×

Log In

Need an RMI account? Create an account

Register With Us

Already have an account?

*required fields

The password must meet the following criteria:

  • At least 8 characters
  • At least 1 lowercase letter
  • At least 1 uppercase letter
  • At least 1 number
  • At least 1 symbol (allowed symbols: !?@#$%^&/*()[]{}><,.+-=;)

Keep up to date with information about our latest climbs by joining our mailing list. Sign up and we'll keep you informed about new adventures, special offers, competitions, and news.
Privacy Policy

×

Expedition Skills Seminar - Shuksan

Type in the number of people in your climbing party and the list of available trips will update.

  • Show Trip Info

    Price
    $2790
    Deposit
    $500
    Duration
    6 days
    Difficulty
    Level 2
    Type
    Skills
×

Check Availability

RMI Logo
Expedition Skills Seminar - Shuksan

Expedition Skills Seminar - Shuksan

dollar sign Price / Deposit

$2,790 / $ 500

Meter Difficulty

Level 2

Clock Duration

6 days

Climber on cliff Type

Skills

Establish a solid foundation of mountaineering skills and prepare for bigger peaks on the Mt. Shuksan's Sulphide Glacier.

Jump To…

RMI's Expedition Skills Seminar – Mt. Shuksan is a six day instructional mountaineering course with a summit attempt of Mt. Shuksan via the Sulphide Glacier.

EXPEDITION HIGHLIGHTS

  • Six days of extensive training on the picturesque Mt. Erie and Mt. Shuksan's Sulphide Glacier.
  • Mt. Erie overlooks the Puget Sound, with panoramic views of the San Juan Islands, the Olympics, and several of the Cascade volcanoes.
  • An expedition-style climb allows us to establish successive tented camps as we ascend the Sulphide Glacier in preparation for our summit bid.
  • The diverse terrain of the North Cascades and Mt. Shuksan is ideal for learning mountaineering skills and techniques on a program suited for novice mountaineers.

The Sulphide Glacier on Mt. Shuksan
The Sulphide Glacier on Mt. Shuksan
The Sulphide Glacier on Mt. Shuksan
The Sulphide Glacier on Mt. Shuksan
The Sulphide Glacier on Mt. Shuksan
Making the approach to Mt. Shuksan's Sulphide Glacier
Camp on the Sulphide Glacier
Mt. Shuksan standing over the Sulphide Glacier
Training on the Sulphide Glacier
Climbing the Sulphide Glacier at sunrise
An RMI Team on the upper stretches of the Sulphide Glacier
Climbing Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid
An RMI Team on Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid
An RMI Team on Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid with Mt. Baker in the distance
An RMI Team climbing Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid
On the summit of Mt. Shuksan
Descending Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid
An RMI Team below Mt. Shuksan's Summit Pyramid after reaching the top
Descending the Sulphide Glacier

Our Expedition Skills Seminar on Mt. Shuksan (9,131') places emphasis on developing foundational mountaineering skills while ascending an iconic peak of the North Cascades. After a day of training basic climbing techniques on Mt. Erie, the team moves to Mt. Shuksan.

Establishing tented camps, we ascend the Sulphide Glacier using the mountain's terrain to learn mountaineering skills such as snow and ice anchors, crevasse rescue, ice climbing, fixed line travel, and other technical skills. Our summit attempt entails scaling the rock and snow of Mt. Shuksan's prominent summit pyramid.

RMI's Expedition Skills Seminar – Mt. Shuksan is ideal for climbers interested in building their mountaineering skills while visiting one of the jewels of the National Park system - North Cascades National Park. The diverse terrain and relaxed itinerary provide excellent training opportunities.

Our Expedition Skills Seminars are comprehensive training courses designed to educate climbers to the mountaineering skills needed to tackle the world's greatest peaks. Successful completion of the Expedition Skill Seminar – Mt. Shuksan will prepare you for many of our expeditions around the world, including Denali, and provides you with a foundation for other major glaciated mountains.

We lead the Expedition Skills Seminar – Mt. Shuksan at a 2 to 1 climber to guide ratio ensuring that you receive a high degree of hands-on instruction and have a small, efficient rope team during the summit ascent.

THE RMI DIFFERENCE

The Mountain Guides at RMI have a reputation as top guides in the United States. RMI Guides participated in some of America’s first ventures into the far reaches of the Himalaya. Years of expedition guiding and alpine climbing around the world have built a core of consummate professional guides.

Our guides are celebrated teachers and trainers, known for their leadership as well as their character. They possess the compassion, enthusiasm and ability to empower others and inspire them forward. Such qualities may only be found in people at the top of their profession. Despite their vast experience, RMI Guides still remember their own first steps into the mountains, and enjoy helping other climbers reach new heights.

Our exceptional focus to detail, our unparalleled level of climber attention, and our genuine excitement for these adventures make our programs truly memorable.

SAFETY

RMI strives to create the safest mountain experience possible. Our experienced team of guides focuses on leading fun and successful climbs without compromising safety. Each climb includes careful pre-trip planning, daily weather forecasts, avalanche forecasts, and diligent attention to detail. All RMI Guides are highly trained in remote medicine and rescue skills and carry comprehensive medical kits, rescue equipment, and radio communication equipment throughout the program. Regardless of the objective or the destination, safety remains RMI’s top priority.

As you prepare for your upcoming adventure please feel free to contact our office and speak directly to one of our experienced guides regarding equipment, conditioning, the route, or any other questions you may have about our programs. We are available Monday thru Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at (888) 89-CLIMB or [email protected].

Climber Reviews

Filter By
09/25/2022
This group really got along well. Solid vibe
Katherine F.

09/18/2022
We had poor weather much of the trip. Our guides did a very good job of adjusting the schedule to accomplish the most training possible and made adjustments so we could summit. Most of the team thought it was a very small chance we would even be given the opportunity to summit. The guides excelled at making our trip a total success!
Doug C.

09/14/2021
The climb and the coaching
Scott L.

09/05/2021
Simply put this was an unforgettable trip. Andy, Chase, and Steve worked with us to make this trip truly our own, and considering the strength of our team and the inclement weather we made the absolute best trip was could have dreamed of across those 6 days. All topics covered, and two mountains explored. It would be my pleasure to climb with these guys any time.
Carl L.

09/20/2019
The scenery, the companionship with new friends, the excellent guides, and the overall experience gained in the mountains
Beechard M.

09/19/2017
I loved learning all the various skills from building anchors to self-arrest to glacial travel to tying knots etc. Everything was hands-on and the guides were incredibly knowledgeable and excellent teachers/leaders.
Jen Y.

09/16/2017
This is my third trip in three years with RMI. I cannot imagine using another guide service.
John W.

08/31/2017
This program was one of the best I've attended. These three guides were a big part of the experience and should be recognized for their work. Amazing guides!
Anthony L.

09/23/2016
All three guides were excellent and I'd sign up for any climb they were leading. Great people skills, leadership skills, and of course mastery of the mountaineering skills being taught. Altho this trip was in Sept., toward the end of the summer climbing season, I didnt detect any weariness in having to work with another grp of amateurs (which I imagine would be easy to start to feel). They were enthusiastic, engaged, and good humored throughout. Further, there was no sense of one guide being stronger or more knowledgable or prefered over the others - all three were great instructors. I felt like we really got the A team with Eric, Solveig, and Jenny.
Robert S.

09/28/2015
The ratio of clients to guides was perfect.Teaching about expedition snow/ ice anchors, glacier travel, etc was excellent.
David C.

09/15/2015
Learning the right skills to approach an alpine climb safely. I felt there was something missing from the Rainier climb where everything is done for you and this fulfilled my goal of taking my climbing skills to the next level.
Will S.

09/04/2015
Great group. We all "gelled" nearly perfectly
Paul G.

09/04/2015
I enjoyed getting to interact with the guides to learn from their experiences. The instruction was top notch and I am exited to put it to use on my own to build my mountaineering skills.
Nick B.

11/10/2014
The guides are top notch, at the end of the day that's all the really matters.
Matthew B.

10/26/2014
Summit!
Heather M.

10/07/2014
signed up for this trip to learn and practice mountaineering techniques in preparation for future climbs...and it certainly met my expectations for that. and of course the actual climb and environment was amazing.
Rick H.

09/27/2014
The first day was a repeat of a Rainier climb, but not to big of a deal. Would love more time on crevasse rescues.
Justin L.

09/15/2014
Itinerary was great. The guides truly were incredible. Great teachers, and just great, smart, funny engaging people.
Mark R.

09/15/2014
Great introduction to mountaineering
Charles T.

09/04/2014
good instruction, good guides, good itinerary
Josh M.

Print all Trip Details Print this Page

Travel Consultant

RMI has partnered with Erin Rountree to provide comprehensive travel support. We have been working with Erin for many years. As an independent agent of the Travel Society, she has booked countless miles for adventure travelers across the globe and is extremely knowledgeable about the travel needs of our programs. Please call (208) 788-2870 or send email to [email protected].

Travel Insurance

We highly recommend travel insurance for this trip. Your travel insurance policy should include trip cancellation, trip interruption, trip delay, baggage loss or delay, medical expenses, and evacuation.

Navigating through the different options for travel insurance can be challenging. When purchasing Travel Insurance, here are a few items to consider:

  • Read the fine print. Travel Insurance will reimburse you when canceling for a covered reason for prepaid, non-refundable trip costs that you insure. However, there are exclusions, so make sure you understand the “covered reasons.”
  • Confirm that your activity is a covered “activity.” Not all travel insurance policies will offer coverage for activities such as mountaineering, climbing, skiing, or trekking adventures. Policies can also exclude coverage for activities due to the gear used (crampons, ice axe), activities that go above specific elevations, or activities in a particular region of the world. If there are exclusions, you may need to add an “Adventure” or “Sports” package to cover your activity.
  • Verify that your state of residence is allowed with the policy that you are purchasing. Not all insurance companies offer policies in all 50 states.
  • Contact your travel protection company directly for any questions you have regarding benefits or coverage.

We have partnered with Travelex Insurance and Harbor Travel Insurance because they offer certain policies specifically designed for adventure travel and offer coverage for remote areas and activities like mountaineering, climbing, skiing, and trekking, without any altitude restrictions. 

 

For your convenience, we offer Travelex Insurance Services, Inc.(CA Agency License #0D10209) travel protection plans to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. 

For more information on the available plans visit Travelex Insurance Services or contact Travelex Insurance (800) 228-9792 and reference location number 47-0370. 

The product descriptions provided here are only brief summaries. The full coverage terms and details, including limitations and exclusions, are contained in the insurance policy. Travel Insurance is underwritten by Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company; NAIC #22276.

Harbor Insurance 

 Harbor Travel Insurance covers the following critical benefits:

  • Evacuation to a nearest appropriate hospital once hospitalized.
  • Trip cancellation/interruption, primary medical expense coverage, sporting goods, baggage loss, emergency dental, AD&D, and more.
  • Completely integrated one-stop program with a single contact for emergency services to travel assistance and insurance claims
  • 24/7 access to paramedics, nurses, and military veterans.

Harbor Travel Insurance is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel security risk company. Their team is comprised of special operations veterans, paramedics, Stanford Medicine affiliated physicians, former intelligence officers, insurance actuaries, and global security experts with dozens of years of experience in theaters around the world. The Redpoint network covers the globe, making them uniquely equipped to provide elite rescue travel insurance – in every sense of the word.

Getting There

You are responsible for your own transportation to the program's trailhead. Most climbers will fly into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) the evening before the program and rent a car for the 2-hour (depending on traffic congestion), 95-mile drive to Anacortes. Your team meets at the parking lot on the very top of Mt. Erie, in Anacortes. We meet at 8 a.m. Click here for driving directions.

On the second day of the program the team will rendezvous at Bingham Park, 322 W Munro Street in Sedro-Woolley. Click here for driving directions.

After a team meeting, we will drive to the climb's trailhead. You will need a Northwest Forest Service parking pass to leave your car at the trailhead. Passes are $30 and valid for one year. There may be an opportunity to leave some vehicles at the Ranger Station and carpool with other team members. Northwest Forest Service parking passes are available for sale at the ranger station.

Ride Share: If you are participating in a climb and are interested in sharing a ride, please post your information in the "Ride Share" forum of your North Cascades Discussion Board by logging into your RMI Account.

Area Accommodations

We suggest spending the night prior to the start of the trip either camping or lodging in the town of Anacortes. We suggest spending your next night in the town of Mt. Vernon or Sedro-Woolley to lessen your drive time in the morning.

Weather

For updated North Cascades weather forecasts, click here.

Tipping

Our guides work hard to ensure your well-being and success on the mountain. If you have a positive experience, gratuities are an excellent way to show your appreciation. Amounts are at your discretion and should be based on your level of enjoyment. Tips for excellent service normally average 10 – 15% of the cost of the program. If you would rather not bring the guide gratuity with you on the trip, you can send a check or call the RMI office to pay with a credit card upon your return.

Facts

North Cascades National Park has over 300 glaciers, more than any other park in the lower 48 states. More than half the glaciers in the 48 states are concentrated in this mountainous wilderness region called the North Cascades.

For more facts click here, and for even more click here.

Resources

General Information on North Cascades National Park.

North Cascades National Park map.

Communities & Activities outside North Cascades National Park, click here.

Contents
Print all Trip Details Print this Page

Qualifications

This trip is open to all individuals in excellent physical condition. There are no technical climbing prerequisites to join this program.

 

Get In The Best Shape Of Your Life And Then Go Climb A Mountain

Create A Fitness And Training Program

 

Physical Fitness Training

Mountaineering requires a high degree of physical stamina and mental toughness. Even for the healthiest and fittest individuals, climbing mountains qualifies as an extremely challenging endeavor.

  • Start immediately. Start a rigorous fitness and training program now with the goal of arriving in top physical condition and confident in your skills.
  • Be intentional. Focus on gaining the necessary strength, stamina and skills to meet the physical and technical demands of the climb.
  • Be sport-specific. The best fitness and training program mimics the physical and technical demands of your climbing objective. The closer you get to your program date, the more your training should resemble the climbing.

For the Expedition Skills Seminar – Shuksan, you are preparing for:

  • Steep hiking, climbing and glacier travel with a 50-60 lb load
  • An 8 - 10 hour summit day
  • Mountaineering techniques requiring core strength and flexibility

Nothing ensures a personally successful adventure like your level of fitness and training. Bottom line: Plan on being in the best shape of your life and ready for a very challenging adventure!

Below are approximate outlines of the program's physical demands that will be helpful in planning your training schedule and goals:

Total Climbing Time
Elevation Gain / Loss
Total Distance
Pack Weight
DAY 1 — Skills Training Mt. Erie
8 Hours
n/a
n/a
n/a
DAY 2 — Hike to Sulphide Glacier
5 - 6 Hours
Gain = 3,500'
4 miles
50 - 60 lbs
DAY 3 — Skills Training
5 - 6 Hours
Gain = 1,500'
Loss = 1,500'
2 miles
20 - 25 lbs
DAY 4 — Skills Training
5 - 6 Hours
Gain = 1,500'
Loss = 1,500'
2 miles
20 - 25 lbs
DAY 5 — Summit Climb
8 - 10 Hours
Gain = 3,125'
Loss = 3,125'
6 miles round trip
20 - 25 lbs
DAY 6 — Descend to Trailhead
2 - 3 Hours
Loss = 3,500'
4 miles
50 - 60 lbs

Please refer to our Resources for Mountaineering Fitness and Training for detailed fitness and training information.

 

Acclimatization

 

No acclimatization is necessary for this program.

Contents
Print all Trip Details Print this Page

What You’ll Need

A list of required personal equipment accompanies every RMI program, and the thought process behind each item is much greater than simply “preparing for the worst and hoping for the best.” The list for your program takes into account factors such as: seasonality, route conditions, weather, elevation and more. As such, this list is framed within the broadest of contexts and is dynamic by its very nature. Therefore, certain variables (additions and/or subtractions) are inherent within such an all-encompassing list. We make every effort to recommend only top of the line clothing and technical gear and it is never our intention for you to buy or rent unnecessary gear.

The Guide Pick is an example of the listed item, giving you an idea of the material and specifications of the item. This exact item does not need to be purchased or used; however, any item you choose must have similar characteristics and performance abilities to the Guide Pick.

RMI Guides concur on the potential necessity of every item, thus every item on the list is required at gear check. However, guides may also have suggestions derived from their experience, some of which will vary from a given list. The guides’ recommendation whether to bring along or leave behind certain item(s) comes during the gear check, when the team first meets. Occasionally this recommendation comes at the expense of having previously purchased an item. If a guide presents the option of leaving behind certain item(s) on the list of required equipment, it is for a reason. Their recommendation may be related to the weather, route conditions, freezing level, perceived strength of the party, or desired pack weight.

Ultimately, there will never be a consensus for a “perfect” equipment list for an ascent. It does not exist because of the multitude of variables faced by climbers throughout the climb. Please follow this equipment list closely so that you will arrive for the gear check with all the required items. Keep in mind the list is not black and white, fine tuning will occur once you meet with your guide. Have a great climb!

If you are planning on renting gear for your climb, there are two options. Please note rental items are not shipped. Pick-up/Drop-off is at the store location. 

Northwest Mountain Shop - 820 Metcalf Street, Sedro-Woolley, WA 98284 | Phone: (360) 854-8761. Most of the required equipment is available for rent or purchase. Equipment can be reserved online.

Backcountry Essentials - 214 W Holly Street, Bellingham, WA 98225 | (360) 543-5678. Many of the required equipment items are available for rent or purchase. Equipment can be reserved online.

The Equipment Shop - American Alpine Institute - 1513 12th Street, Belllingham, WA 98225 | (360) 671-1570. Most of the required equipment is available for rent or purchase. Equipment can be reserved online.

Equipment List

Pack & Travel

Image of 65+ LITER BACKPACK
65+ LITER BACKPACK

Your pack must be large enough for your layers, climbing gear, and food, as well as a portion of your tent and your share of group equipment. You will not need a separate summit pack.

Guide Pick™

Sleeping Bag & Pad

Image of SLEEPING BAG
SLEEPING BAG

We recommend a bag rated between 20° and 0° F. Allow ample room for movement. We recommend down over synthetic for its light weight, warmth, and packability. If climbing in April, May, June, or September, or if you know you sleep cold, consider a 0° F bag.

Guide Pick™

Image of COMPRESSION STUFF SACK FOR SLEEPING BAG
COMPRESSION STUFF SACK FOR SLEEPING BAG
Guide Pick™

Image of SLEEPING PAD
SLEEPING PAD

Full-length inflatable or closed cell pad.

Guide Pick™

Technical Gear

Image of ICE AXE
ICE AXE

The length of your axe depends on your height. Use the following general mountaineering formula: up to 5'8", use a 65 cm axe; 5'8" to 6'2", use a 70 cm axe; and taller, use a 75 cm axe. If you hold the axe so that it hangs comfortably at your side, the spike of the axe should still be a few inches above the ground.

Guide Pick™

Image of CLIMBING HARNESS
CLIMBING HARNESS

We recommend a comfortable, adjustable alpine climbing harness. Removable, drop seat, or adjustable leg loops are convenient for managing your clothing layers over the course of the climb and facilitate going to the bathroom.

Guide Pick™

Image of TRIPLE-ACTION LOCKING CARABINER
1 TRIPLE-ACTION LOCKING CARABINER

Used for clipping into the climbing rope.

Guide Pick™

Image of LOCKING CARABINER(S)
1 LOCKING CARABINER(S)

Used for clipping into anchors, etc.

Guide Pick™

Image of NON-LOCKING CARABINER(S)
3 NON-LOCKING CARABINER(S)

Used for pack ditch loop, etc.

Guide Pick™

Image of CRAMPONS
CRAMPONS

10-point or 12-point adjustable steel crampons with anti-balling plates designed for general mountaineering use.

Guide Pick™

Image of AVALANCHE TRANSCEIVER WITH FRESH BATTERIES
AVALANCHE TRANSCEIVER WITH FRESH BATTERIES

Transceivers are required on all North Cascades programs before July. The RMI Office will notify climb participants if the transceiver is not needed for their climb after July 1st.

Guide Pick™

Image of TREKKING POLES
TREKKING POLES

We recommend lightweight and collapsible poles with snow baskets.

Guide Pick™

Image of BELAY DEVICE
BELAY DEVICE

A tube-style belay/rappel device that can accept a variety of rope diameters.

Guide Pick™

Image of MECHANICAL ASCENDER (OPTIONAL)
MECHANICAL ASCENDER (OPTIONAL)

For practicing fixed line travel. You guides will also provide one to practice with. Most people prefer an ascender designed for their weak hand, leaving their strong hand free to hold their ice axe. For example, a right-handed person would use a left-handed ascender.

Guide Pick™

Image of ' ACCESSORY CORD
12 ' ACCESSORY CORD

6 mm cordelette in one continuous length OR precut into two 4' sections OR two 13.5" Sterling Hollow Block sewn loops.

Guide Pick™

Image of ' ACCESSORY CORD
15 ' ACCESSORY CORD

7 mm cordelette in one continuous length OR one 240cm dyneema sling.


Head

Image of HELMET
HELMET

A UIAA (Union Internationale des Associations d’Alpinisme) or CE (European Committee for Standardization) certified climbing helmet.

Guide Pick™

Image of WARM HAT
WARM HAT

Wool or synthetic. It should provide warmth but also be thin enough to fit underneath a climbing helmet.

Guide Pick™


Image of BUFF
BUFF

A Buff provides versitile head and neck protection. A neck gaiter is also acceptable.

Guide Pick™

2 PROTECTIVE FACE MASK(S)

Cloth or surgical face mask for use in situations where 6 feet of distance from others cannot be maintained.


Image of HEADLAMP
HEADLAMP

Start with fresh batteries and bring extra set(s) of batteries appropriate to the duration of the trip.

Guide Pick™

Image of GLACIER GLASSES
GLACIER GLASSES

Glacier glasses are protective sunglasses that provide close to 100% frame coverage (wrap-around frames and side shields ensure no light can enter from the top, bottom, and sides of the glasses) and transmit less than 10% of visual light.

Guide Pick™

Image of GOGGLES
GOGGLES

Amber or rose-tinted goggles for adverse weather. On windy days, climbers, especially contact lens wearers, may find photochromatic lenses the most versatile in a variety of light conditions.

Guide Pick™

Hands

Each glove layer is worn separately as conditions change during the climb.

Image of LIGHT WEIGHT GLOVES
LIGHT WEIGHT GLOVES

Light weight liner or softshell gloves. Lighter colors absorb less sunlight while still offering UV protection.

Guide Pick™

Image of MEDIUM WEIGHT GLOVES
MEDIUM WEIGHT GLOVES

Wind- and water-resistant, insulated mountain gloves.

Guide Pick™

Upper Body

We recommend a minimum of five upper body layers, all of which can be used in conjunction with each other. Two of these should be insulating layers, one light, and one medium, that fit well together. Today there are many different layering systems to choose from, including fleece, softshell, down, and synthetic options.

Image of LIGHT WEIGHT BASELAYER OR SUN HOODY
LIGHT WEIGHT BASELAYER OR SUN HOODY

Long-sleeve wool or synthetic top. Light weight, light-colored, hooded baselayers (sun hoodys) are highly recommended for sun protection.

Guide Pick™

Image of LIGHT WEIGHT INSULATING LAYER
LIGHT WEIGHT INSULATING LAYER

One step up in warmth and bulk from a baselayer. A technical fleece makes an ideal light weight insulating layer.

Guide Pick™

Image of MEDIUM WEIGHT INSULATING LAYER
MEDIUM WEIGHT INSULATING LAYER

A down, synthetic, or softshell hoody makes a great midlayer.

Guide Pick™


Image of DOWN OR SYNTHETIC INSULATED JACKET
DOWN OR SYNTHETIC INSULATED JACKET

Your down or synthetic jacket should must have an insulated hood and be able to fit over the rest of your upper body layers. It will be worn primarily in camp and at rest breaks on summit day

Guide Pick™

Image of SPORTS BRA
SPORTS BRA

We recommend a moisture-wicking, active-wear bra.

Guide Pick™

Lower Body

We recommend a system of four layers, all of which can be used in conjunction with each other. Products which combine several layers into one garment, such as traditional ski pants, don’t work well as they don’t offer the versatility of a layering system.



Image of SOFTSHELL CLIMBING PANTS
SOFTSHELL CLIMBING PANTS

Softshell climbing pants can be worn in combination with a base layer on colder days, or alone on warmer days.

Guide Pick™

Image of RAIN PANTS WITH FULL-LENGTH SIDE ZIPPERS (HARD SHELL)
RAIN PANTS WITH FULL-LENGTH SIDE ZIPPERS (HARD SHELL)

Non-insulated, waterproof shell pants must be able to fit comfortable over your baselayer bottoms and softshell climbing pants. Full side zippers or 7/8 side zippers are required so that shell pants can be put on while wearing boots and crampons.

Guide Pick™

Image of LIGHT WEIGHT TREKKING PANTS OR SHORTS  (OPTIONAL)
LIGHT WEIGHT TREKKING PANTS OR SHORTS (OPTIONAL)

A light weight, synthetic pair of pants is a good option for the approach trek when hiking at lower altitudes and in warm conditions. These pants have no insulation, are typically made of thin nylon, and commonly feature zippers to convert between pants and shorts.

Guide Pick™

Feet

Image of SINGLE MOUNTAINEERING BOOTS
SINGLE MOUNTAINEERING BOOTS

Insulated, full-shank, and crampon-compatible leather or synthetic single mountaineering boots are ideal for the North Cascades.

Guide Pick™

Image of HIKING BOOTS/APPROACH SHOES (RECOMMENDED)
HIKING BOOTS/APPROACH SHOES (RECOMMENDED)

A pair of approach shoes or lightweight boots for approaches and hiking on rugged terrain after the snow melts (typically by mid-July). Can also be used as a camp shoe.

Guide Pick™

Image of GAITERS
GAITERS

A knee-length pair of gaiters, large enough to fit over your mountaineering boots. This will protect you from catching your crampon spikes on loose clothing. Not needed if using a boot with an integrated gaiter.

Guide Pick™

Image of PAIRS OF SOCKS
2 PAIRS OF SOCKS

Either wool or synthetic. Whatever sock combination you are accustomed to wearing during your training or previous adventures (whether single medium weight socks, a medium weight with a liner sock, two medium weight socks together, etc.), should work just fine for this climb.

Guide Pick™

First Aid & Medications

Image of SMALL PERSONAL FIRST AID KIT
SMALL PERSONAL FIRST AID KIT

Our guides carry comprehensive medical kits, so keep yours small and light. We recommend a selection of adhesive bandages, antibiotic ointment, Moleskin and blister care, medical tape and/or duct tape, basic pain reliever, and personal medications.

Guide Pick™

Personal Items

Image of MEALS & SNACKS
MEALS & SNACKS

See the Food tab for suggestions and quantities.


Image of BOWL
BOWL

Packable plastic bowl. Collapsable models can work but must be handled carefully to avoid unintended collapsing. A lid is a great feature.

Guide Pick™

Image of INSULATED MUG
INSULATED MUG

Insulated outdoor-style mug. We recommed a model with a removable lid, which helps retain heat and prevent spills. You may also choose to use 0.5L insulated bottle or a 0.5L nalgene.

Guide Pick™

Image of SPOON OR SPORK
SPOON OR SPORK

A spoon or spork made of durable plastic or anodized metal. A long-handled spoon can be nice, especially if eating from a freeze-dried meal pouch.

Guide Pick™

Image of WATER BOTTLES
2 - 3 WATER BOTTLES

One-liter water bottles with wide mouths made of co-polyester (BPA-free plastic).

Guide Pick™

Image of AQUAMIRA WATER TREATMENT DROPS
AQUAMIRA WATER TREATMENT DROPS

Chlorine Dioxide water purification drops. Make sure to select the 30-minute version.

Guide Pick™

Image of GALLON ZIP-LOCK BAG
GALLON ZIP-LOCK BAG

This will be your personal trash bag.

Guide Pick™

Image of LARGE GARBAGE BAGS
2 LARGE GARBAGE BAGS

Heavy-duty trash compacter bags for use as waterproof pack/stuff sack liners. You can also use a a waterproof pack liner.


Image of PERSONAL TOILETRIES & BAG
PERSONAL TOILETRIES & BAG

Include toilet paper, hand sanitizer, toothbrush and toothpaste, and wet wipes. Bring a quantity appropriate to the duration of your trip.


Image of TRAVEL SIZE HAND SANITIZER
TRAVEL SIZE HAND SANITIZER
Guide Pick™

Image of SUNSCREEN
SUNSCREEN

We recommend small tubes of SPF 30 or higher, which can be carried in pockets for easy access and to prevent freezing.

Guide Pick™

Image of LIP BALM
LIP BALM

We recommend SPF 15 or higher.

Guide Pick™

Image of INSECT REPELLENT
INSECT REPELLENT
Guide Pick™

SPARE CONTACT LENSES/ EYEGLASSES (OPTIONAL)

Spare prescription glasses if you wear contact lenses/eyeglasses.


Image of PEE FUNNEL (FOR WOMEN, OPTIONAL)
PEE FUNNEL (FOR WOMEN, OPTIONAL)

Practice using this before coming on the climb!

Guide Pick™

PEE BOTTLE (OPTIONAL)

One clearly-marked wide-mouth or collapsible bottle for overnight use.

Guide Pick™

Image of CAMERA (OPTIONAL)
CAMERA (OPTIONAL)

Many smartphones have excellent cameras. Action cameras, small point-and-shoots, and compact dSLRs are lightweight and work well at altitude.


Image of POWER BANK (OPTIONAL)
POWER BANK (OPTIONAL)

A small power bank, enough to charge a phone or e-reader several times.

Guide Pick™

Travel Clothes

Image of TRAVEL CLOTHES
TRAVEL CLOTHES

We recommend bringing a selection of clothing to wear while traveling, site seeing and dining.  


SUNGLASSES

Pre-Trip Checklist

Purchase travel insurance.


Purchase airplane tickets.


Arrange transportation and lodging.


Reserve rental equipment.


Be in the best shape of your life!



Provided Equipment

RMI provides the following equipment for your program: tents, stoves, group cooking equipment, fuel, climbing ropes and anchors, and blue bags (for solid waste disposal).

Every guide on your climb will carry rescue equipment and a first aid kit. Each climb has two-way radios and a cell phone for emergency contact.

Contents
Print all Trip Details Print this Page

MEALS

On the Expedition Skills Seminar – Shuksan you will need 6 mountain lunches, 4 dinners, and 4 breakfasts while on the mountain.

OVERVIEW

Nutrition while training and nutrition while climbing are two very different things. You may follow a specific nutrition regimen while training to aid your desired outcomes, but once it comes to the climb, calories are what count the most. While climbing, you are trying to maximize energy and performance over a short period of time.

Our food priorities when climbing are:

  • a high-calorie intake
  • a variety of flavor profiles (sweet, salty, sour, etc.)
  • durability/packability
  • enjoyment

Caloric requirements will vary widely from climber to climber based on physical size and metabolism. It is important for you to know what your body requires. One of the normal, albeit disconcerting, adjustments to altitude is a slight loss of appetite. Bring food you enjoy. If you don't love a food at home, you certainly won't like it on the mountain!

Ample hot and cold water will be provided for your meals, drinks, and refilling water bottles. When planning your menu, don't bring any items that require extensive preparation, cooking, or simmering. We are able to provide you with boiling water but do not have the ability to actually cook food items.

Things to keep in mind as you plan your meals:

  • How much space the food will take in your backpack
  • How well the food will hold up throughout the trip in your backpack
  • How much waste does the food produce

Consider repacking items into smaller Ziploc bags to minimize the space in your pack. Your food will get crammed into your backpack, jostled around, exposed to extreme temperatures, and even sat on (by you, of course!). What holds up better in these conditions, two slices of bread or a bagel? When packing, it is essential to consider the waste you will produce on the climb; after all, you have to carry it off the mountain. We've already mentioned repacking items to minimize space. Repacking items can also eliminate waste!

MOUNTAIN LUNCHES

Mountain lunches, aka snacks, are eaten during short breaks throughout the day. We continually snack to keep our energy levels up while we climb. We typically take rest breaks every hour or so to adjust our clothing layers, eat, and hydrate. Avoid packing any items that require preparation or hot water at each break. In terms of quantity, aim to bring 1 lb. of climbing food per day. We suggest using snack or sandwich size Ziploc bags to portion out snack food.

The importance of having foods that you genuinely enjoy cannot be overstated. Eating properly is the key to maintaining strength while in the mountains. To combat the loss of appetite at altitude, we aim to have a variety of foods that stimulate the whole palate, from sweet to sour to salty. See the sample menu and packing list below for ideas!

 

Mountain Lunch Foods

 

• Cold pizza • Bagel sandwich • Tortilla wraps • Chips
• Trail mix • Peanut butter pretzels • Chocolate covered pretzels • Apple slices
• Crackers • Cookies • Candy bars • Protein bars
  • Chewy candy • Veggies and hummus  
PRO TIP:
Feel fancy! Charcuterie (cured meat, cheese, and crackers) makes a great mountain lunch!

 

Breakfast

Single-serving instant oatmeal, Cream-of-Wheat, or granola make a good main course fare. A variety of granola bars, pastries, fruit, and a hot drink mix of coffee, tea, cocoa, or cider are suggested. Plan on eating a breakfast that tastes good and that you find filling. See the sample menu and packing list below for additional ideas!

Breakfast Food Items

 

• Instant hot cereal (Oatmeal, Cream-of-Wheat, Cream-of-Rice, etc.)
• Granola or cereal
• Freeze-dried breakfast (Mountain House, Peak Refuel, Mountain Zora, and Katadyn's Alpine Aire all have breakfast options)
• Add-ins such as individual servings of peanut butter or honey, raisins or craisins, or a few tablespoons of powdered milk can put your mountain cereal game over the top.
PRO TIP:
Think outside the box. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (on bagels) or ramen make great breakfast options!

Dinner

This meal will give your body the initial fuel it needs during your summit attempt. Spend time considering your options so that you go to bed nourished and ready for the climb ahead of you. Freeze-dried entrees are very convenient mountain dinners. Pay attention to the caloric quantity – it varies from meal to meal. See the sample menu and packing list below for more ideas!

Dinner Food Items

 

 

• Freeze-dried entrée (Mountain House, Peak Refuel, Mountain Zora, and Katadyn's Alpine Aire have a wide variety of options)
• Instant soups (including Cup-o'Noodles and ramen)
• Cold pizza
• Cold fried chicken
• Pasta salad
• Bagel sandwich
PRO TIP:
Have a tasting party of freeze-dried entrees to test them out before your climb.

BEVERAGES

Staying hydrated on the climb is crucial. You will have access to ample cold water while at camp for drinking and replenishing water bottles. When climbing, you will want to ration how much water you drink at each rest break to ensure you have water throughout the entirety of your climb. You can expect breaks to occur approximately every hour or so of climbing.

Just as with food, it is important to have a variety of things to drink that excite your taste buds. Drink mixes such as Gatorade, Kool-Aid, Liquid IV, Nuun, etc., are great for flavor. Hot beverage options are also an important component to consider while at camp. Coffee, tea, cocoa, and cider are great ways to warm up in the evening before bed, when you wake up for your alpine start on summit day, and to recharge once back at camp.

Climbing Beverages

• Drink Mixes (Gatorade, Kool-Aid, Liquid IV, and Nuun are great for flavor variety)
• Instant Coffee (Starbucks Via is a great option for being pre-portioned)
• Assorted Tea
• Instant Cocoa
• Instant Cider
PRO TIP:
Skip the water bladder and practice rationing your water while training.
Contents
Print all Trip Details Print this Page
Contents
Back to Top

Sign up for our Newsletter

Image of Mt Rainier
    *required fields
    • Keep up to date with information about our latest climbs by joining our mailing list. Sign up and we'll keep you informed about new adventures, special offers, competitions, and news.
      privacy policy

Thank you for subscribing to the RMI Expeditions Newsletter!

While you're at it, you can sign up some of our other mailings as well:

Please choose the programs you'd like updates on: