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Redline Guides Go West

Redline Guides Ken and Álvaro.

Taking some time off from the rigors of guiding, Redline Guides Ken Hodges and Álvaro Marques, along with eight others, recently enjoyed a little mountaineering climbing not one, but two iconic Pacific Northwest mountains. First in Oregon, they cut their teeth on the 10,358′ South Sister. This climb helped them acclimate. They then headed to Washington and took on and summited the 14,410′ Mt Rainier where nine out of the group of ten made it to the top of Liberty Crest (one person stayed at Camp Muir).

Back here at home base, some of us having done some of what they just did, we can really appreciate the level of excitement, the beauty, and the suffering they endured. We know how deep one has to dig to get themselves and their gear to the summit of these beasts, the latter in particular — it is a slog-and-a-half. Congratulations to the whole team. Thanks to this training and all the work they’ve been doing this year, come this winter these guys will be prepared to lead the charge up our very own and critically demanding and unforgiving 6288′ Mt Washington and safely guide our guests into the Northern Presidentials and beyond.

What follows are some photos of their trip taken Álvaro, Ken, and Tomoko Nakajima. Enjoy!

Mountain One: South Sister – 10,358′

First up: 10,358′ South Sister in Oregon.

Álvaro’s campsite for the night: here showing pride for his home in Portugal, and the color red.

Up with the sun.

Redline Team. Ready to roll.

The team makes their way.

A glacier lake at around 9000′ (possibly Tear Drop Pool or a Lewis Glacier leftover).

The long haul… almost there now.

On the summit with Middle and North Sister (the oldest of the three) in the background.

After summiting South Sister the team rested for a couple of days as they made their way to their section no objective…

Mountain Two: Mt Rainier – 14,410′

Mt Rainier… the summit is right there.

All that gear. Pounds of it.

Securing permits and getting the D.C. route briefing.

A lush beginning out of Paradise.

Land of incredible beauty.

Pebble Creek and the entrance of the Muir Snowfield.

Just some of the needed gear.

Avalanche beacon refresher.

Stunning vista.

The Cowlitz Glacier as seen from Camp Muir.

The guys representing.

Time to climb.

Summit crew.

Racing the sun… and losing. Recent serac shifts caused the route to wind taking the team a greater distance. The routing on the upper mountain is a constantly evolving thing making the timing of alpine starts tricky.

Here comes the day.

The warming sun brings danger. Frozen hard snow bridges can collapse as the sun warms them exposing climbers to sudden falls (which is why they travel roped).

Chillin’ in the vent.

Team success on the Rainier summit (Liberty Crest), 14,410-feet.

Congratulations goes to the entire team for an amazing accomplishment!

For more information and photos, please check out the members on Facebook.

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