110 MPH Winds on Rainier

Here’s a report from Rainier Ranger Chuck Young on the impact of 110 MPH winds on May 27:

A group of climbers guided by one of the park’s permitted concession guiding companies encountered sudden extreme weather conditions while descending from the summit of Mount Rainier on May 20. Blizzard conditions with winds gusting to 110 mph made navigation and communications nearly impossible among all rope teams on the mountain.

One client became moderately hypothermic and two guides suffered from frostbite on their hands.

Guides from other companies who were in the area were summoned for assistance and all parties continued the descent. By midnight, all had been accounted for and had made it safely to shelter at the Camp Muir high camp. Rangers there assisted in warming and treating the individuals.

By the next morning, the weather had improved, as had the condition of the individuals, and all parties descended back down to Paradise without incident.

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