We went snowshoeing on Mt Rainier on the last day of 2023. It was great to have most of the mountain to ourselves. And the twins took to the snow shoes like a fish to water. It was the perfect way to end the last year and start a new one.
Exactly 12 years ago to this day Jenna and I discovered Mt Rainier. We went up there on Dec 31, dug a snow cave and spent the night in it.
The mountain ended up becoming a big part of our lives and we started spending a lot of time on it. Eventually we learned mountaineering and summited it by ourselves. After we left Seattle we couldn’t spend as much time there but we still made it back once every year or two. Two summers ago we hiked up to the base camp and spent the night tented up at 10,000ft.
The mountain has its own weather system so you have to get lucky to be able to see it. I rely exclusively on the NWS forecast for Mt Rainier. I start monitoring the weather a few weeks leading up to it and then see the second order change in forecast to understand which day would be the best to go. I wrote about this here: Understanding weather forecast trends for alpine climbing