Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Upcoming climbs!

2015 has been a great year for mountain lovers.  Despite the low snow levels, I and a record number of my good friends have been following our dreams to climb to the peaks that we've always longed to reach.

Within the past year, I've been blessed with opportunities to summit Mount Hood, Mount Adams, multiple times up Mount St. Helens, and other less famous peaks.  Some are outings that I've lead for NW Wilderness or other local groups.  Family schedule permitting, I'm hoping to squeeze a few more in.

Never before seen photo of Katya and I on the summit of Mount Hood!

Our final Mount Hood climb of the year has been bumped up considerably to chase after the official end of the "safe" climbing season last week.  Time slipped away from us this year.  Don't judge-- I was asked to climb, I didn't volunteer.  But how could I say no?  We promise we'll turn around and descend if we observe that the post-season rockfall or crevasses are too dangerous.

It's up to another, more experienced climbing buddy whether or not we will again pursue my ever-elusive hopes of climbing Mount Rainier (links are in blue) this summer.

But there will certainly be another Mount Adams climb or two in the mix.  If I lead a two-day climb, we would be climbing to camp at altitude before summitting the next day.  The other climb I'd like to participate in, organized by another leader, would be a single day ascent.

I hope to be climbing, rappelling, or doing whatever my favorite friend Katya is in the mood for this week... both today and on Friday.  But great friends are more important than the activities we choose.  And this weekend's insane 32-mile, 7500+ elevation gain circumnavigation of Mount St Helens will be a tough and painful but ridiculously fun scramble over some really rough terrain for us.  I've been looking forward to this one since hearing about last year's notorious expedition that ended on 2:17 a.m the next day.  I feel like I'm in great shape, although this trip will probably deal the final blow to my orthotic inserts before they need to be repaired.  Future Mount St Helens climbs are on hold until this fall season, but Garth's Blog readers can soon expect an upcoming blog post about the most recent climb I led up to the St. Helens rim.

Many more hikes and scrambles are in the works, but I only have time to lead one or two a month.  I'm also excited to lead upcoming hikes for a couple of local churches, as well as rallying some friends in Europe for a Mount Blanc summit bid.

All of these plans are subject to change.  I won't be updating this "Upcoming Climbs" post, as I often do.  Rather, I'll be sharing some of these adventures here on Garth's Blog and Twitter as they happen.  Someone like me doesn't deserve to have these opportunities, or to blessed with such amazing and supportive friends and family... but I thank God for all of this.


Family always comes first.  And our student ministry at Aloha Church of God is also the highest priority, with a special emphasis on growing our ministry and fundraising for our upcoming Mexico mission trip with Welcome Home Outreach Ministries.  Gotta have priorities!

Coming next, after our Loowit 360 marathon scramble...

A photo posted by Garth Hamilton (@garth_hamilton) on

Taking a group on our most recent hike, to Nesmith Point!

No comments: