Monday, May 7, 2012

Ben Lomond Trip

In a week, My wife, my father-in-law, Mark, and I will be heading to Washington to climb Mt. Rainier.  Kelsey and Mark have spent a ton of time in the mountains backpacking, but mountaineering on glaciers will be a new experience for them.  Over the weekend we headed up to Ben Lomond to practice self-arresting, climbing on a rope team, and crevasse rescue.

Here are a few pictures from the trip:

Kelsey and Mark.  Ben Lomond is the peak on the far left.

Myself and Kelsey

This is looking up toward the summit from our camp.  A storm came through during the night with really high winds.  We set the tent (Stephenson's Warmlite 3R) up in the open because I wanted to see how it would hold up to the wind.  I had no idea the winds would be so strong.  I would guess that wind gusts during the night were around 70-80mph.  However strong they were, we all agreed that we had never been in winds that strong before. The winds made it impossible to sleep and I spent much of the night waiting for our tent to be ripped apart.  

Here's the tent the next day.  Despite the extremely high winds, the tent is still standing.  In fact, even though I was expecting the tent to be damaged by the winds, it did just fine.  Other than deafening flapping from the tent material, it held up great.  The poles, which are pre-curved, hardly seemed to notice the wind.  They bent slightly under the wind, but not much at all.  I've been in other 4-season tents in winds that weren't nearly this strong and spent much of the night holding the tent up so the winds wouldn't flatten the tent.  I'm definitely super impressed with the wind resistance of the tent.

Nearing the summit

Me and Kelsey on the summit

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