Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Rainier Journal: Day Three

I slept soundly through the night. They key seems to be ear plugs... I stayed comfortably in my bag long after the sun was up. Eventually I yielded to natures call and crawled my way out of the tent. I was greeted by Mt. Adams, Hood, Jefferson and St. Helens all seemingly afloat in a sea of clouds. Today is a rest day. We have been sitting, eating, melting snow for drinking water and just hanging out. We practiced our crevasse rescue skills for a bit in a smaller crevasse near camp.

Part of the mountain experience is using a little blue plastic bag that goes in a clear plastic bag. This is how you dispose of your business on the mountain. Drop it in the bag, seal it up, and carry it out. Dan had been doing it the dog poop way, where you drop it on the ground then pick it up with the bag. I told him to just go in the bag. It is cleaner and faster.... I have no idea what must have happened in the next five minutes... Dan came back up the hill bag in hand stating very casually, "that didn't work out so well." He was carrying an open clear bag of his own feces. We all died laughing. He then proceeded to leave it right next to us while he tried to work out a solution. We laughed until our abs hurt and our cheeks felt like they were cramping into a permanent smile. Apparently he didn't know the blue bag was a bag.... He had thought the whole time that it was a tissue or something... I don't know. This is probably too much information, but it was the funniest thing all day.

Mountaineering is an amazing pastime. The route we are doing is considered intermediate, but still affords us all a new perspective on the world. We get to see ourselves pushed into new situation, we get to cope with the fear of hidden crevasses and rock or ice fall, we get to see the surrounding terrain from a new vantage point. We also get to push ourselves physically through the aches and pains of carrying a load up a mountain. Is this the hardest thing I have ever done? As of now, no, but it is another unique time that I will always remember.
 Hanging out.
 The blue bag and my view while using it... Not many restrooms have this view.
 Everyone setting up snow anchors.
Our little crevasse
 Down inside. This one was only about 20-30 ft. deep.
 I was regretting not wearing something waterproof...
We hit the sack around 4 or 5 p.m.

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