Mike Gauthier Reports on Strange Behavior on Rainier


The Seattle Post-Intelligencer has an interview with Rainier Climbing Ranger Mike Gauthier who notes he likes cell phones on Rainier although people leave some strange messages.

What annoying cell phone calls have you gotten?

“As a general rule, I find them to be helpful for me, for a search and rescue manager. Unfortunately, people need them sometimes and I’m glad that they have them. That said, one time these guys called and they were climbing a really technical route called Ptarmigan Ridge, and basically they called in from above base camp and they wanted us to give them the route conditions and directions.

“This one struck me as particularly absurd because, generally speaking, you’d like to think that people on those routes had done a significant amount of planning…. They left their name and number and they were like, ‘Call us back right away.’ “

In other items Gauthier notes he has climbed Rainier 36 times in one season, prefers the Emmons Glacier Route, is sometimes amazed at team ropework — sometimes even with ropes around their necks.

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