Two days after Mailbox Peak we climbed to Camp Muir.
Camp Muir is one of the base camps you can spend the night at the night before you climb Mt. Rainier. It's about half way up. We woke up at 5 and started our hike at 7:30. It was fun to drive to the mountain and watch the sun rise. It was incredible.
It was so much more beautiful than pictures or words can describe.
(I can't remember, but I think that's Mt. Adams in the background)
It's crazy because as your hiking it looks like the top it just RIGHT THERE but you're still SO far away!! Like an entires day's worth of hiking away.
It was such an amazingly clear, perfect day to be hiking.
Once we crossed the river it was all snow for the rest of the way.
The higher we got the harder it got to breathe but the views kept getting better and better.
The clouds started rolling in and I hoped we'd make it to Camp Muir before the weather turned on us.
The last 45 minutes is really, really steep and you're so tired and can hardly breathe and everything is burning… but it doesn't' matter because you can finally see Camp Muir and it's ALL worth it!!
(That little brown building in the middle of the picture… Camp Muir)
(Jake coming up the mountain)
And we made it! I was greeted by those two men and one of the first things they asked was how long did it take us (we were the first hikers to get there that day). I checked my watch and it was 11:30… so 4 hours. Apparently that's pretty freakin' awesome so I kind-of felt like a rockstar.
The night before it was a crazy thunder and lightning storm. They all said it was WAY scary and those people didn't get to hike Mt. Rainier that day (because it was storming all night and technically you wake up at midnight in order to get to the top and back down in one day before it gets hot and melts the ice and snow). It had snowed a few inches that night too.
You can see some of the crevasses.
6 people had died from an avalanche earlier this Summer and just a few days prior to us hiking they found 3 of the bodies. It was a weird feeling being up there. Spiritual and awe-inspiring but a little eerie too.
I guess I needed a picture every few thousand feet :)
We ate our lunch and talked to a few people about what it's like to climb to the top and how to prepare and when to do it… etc.
From the first time I went to Mt. Rainier this Summer I've been wanting to climb to the top. I did a lot of reading about it and thinking about it and obsessing about it and worrying about it and losing sleep about it and it was nice to at least make it to Camp Muir (it's the highest you can go without a permit or guide). I'm pretty sure Jake and I will climb it someday; we want to at least.
We talked with tons of people on the way down and one girl even gave us two plastic trash bags so that we could sled down. Best gift ever!!!
When we finally got almost all the way down there were billions of people everywhere. A far cry from being the first two people on the mountain that day. But we still had an amazing experience and it was probably one of the top ten best days of my life. Honestly. It was fantastic. Makes me love Jake even more when we do such fun things like this together.