The Adventure Guys

The inside story on outside recreation for South Puget Sound and beyond

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Archives: April 2010


Cayuse Pass opens at Mount Rainier National Park

Cayuse Pass in Mount Rainier National Park opened for public vehicle travel Friday afternoon, park superintendent Dave Uberuaga said.

Opening the pass, which closes each winter, allows motorists to travel along the east boundary of the park via State Route 123. State Route 410 is also open from Crystal Mount Boulevard as far as State Route 123, but Chinook Pass remains closed.

The Washington State Department of Transportation removed  snow, rocks and downed trees from the roads, which have been closed since Nov. 8. Park officials say deep snow remains on the sides of the road.


Crystal Mountain breaks ground on new gondola

From Crystal Mountain:

Preparations for the new gondola began Monday, April 26th, with the demolition of the Market and Bumps Espresso stand, the site where the bottom terminal will be located.

The gondola will travel up Exterminator and finish at the top of the Rainier Express chairlift after passing through 13 lift towers.  Construction is expected to be completed November/December 2010.

Crystal Mountain will be the only ski area in Washington and Oregon to have a gondola.

“The addition of the gondola is a big step towards becoming a year-round resort and recreation area,” said Crystal spokeswoman Tiana Enger. “It will

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Bellevue skier retires from U.S. Alpine Team

Bellevue’s Paul McDonald, a product of Crystal Mountain, announced his retirement from the U.S. Ski Team on Wednesday morning.

The 2004 NCAA slalom champion at Dartmouth finished his career with two top-three finishes in a race at Mission Ridge near Wenatchee.

“It was incredible to be a part of such an awesome team,” McDonald said in a statement released by the team. “You can always look at ski racing and want to do more in the sport, but what I’ve learned in this sport will absolutely help me in the next step of my career.”

McDonald’s career was hampered by back problems in recent years. He started 14 World Cup races. The 25-year-old plans to pursue a career in finance.

McDonald grew up skiing at Crystal with fellow Team USA members Scott Macartney and Libby Ludlow. Ludlow retired in ’08 and Macartney retired in March.

Will Brandenburg, a 2010 Olympian from Spokane, is the only remaining team member from Washington. Vanessa Berther of Bellevue and Colby Granstrom of Lake Stevens are on the developmental team.

Read the release from the U.S. Ski Team:

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Rainier ranger: Climbers showed courage by staying alive

Climbing rangers rescued two young climbers Tuesday afternoon on the south slopes of Mount Rainier a day after the Canadians were caught in adverse weather and fell 75 feet into a crevasse.

Both climbers, a man and woman in their early 20s, were able to walk with rescuers to nearby Camp Muir where they were later airlifted off the mountain. Neither climber sustained life-threatening injuries, but both had symptoms related to hypothermia, said park spokeswoman Patti Wold.

The female climber complained of neck and back pain, Wold said.

Both climbers, whose names have yet to be released, are from Quebec

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Coast Guard offers boating safety reminders

As the Pacific Northwest prepares to kick off the 2010 boating season, the U.S. Coast Guard issued a news release reminding boaters to have a ‘SWEET’ time on the water.

Here is the rest of the news release:

S – Safety

* Don’t drink and boat

* Wear a life jacket

* Ensure your eqipment is labeled with the proper contact information. Click here for more information.


* Check weather forecasts

* Dress for the water, not the weather

E – Equipment

* Carry a VHF-FM marine radio

* Make sure your boat is in good repair

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Mount Rainier climbers who fell over cornice rescued


Mount Rainier National Park spokeswoman Patti Wold just confirmed that both climbers have been rescued.  Both climbers, in their early 20s, were able to hike to Camp Muir where they were airlifted off the mountain. Both were suffering from symptoms of hypothermia and the female climber had neck and back pain.


Rescuers have reached the male climber in the two-person party stranded overnight on Mount Rainier.

The climber, who had been in and out of consciousness, was able to walk up to Camp Muir so he could warm up.


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Three rockfish species listed under the Endangered Species Act

NOAA’s Fisheries Service earlier today announced that it is listing three populations of rockfish in Puget Sound and the rest of the Georgia Basin for protection under the Endangered Species Act.

The populations of two of the rockfish species – canary and yelloweye – have been designated as “threatened” and a third rockfish species – bocaccio – as “endangered.”

An endangered species is at high risk of extinction; a threatened species is vulnerable to extinction in the near future and in need of protection.

Populations of all three rockfish species in the Georgia Basin, which encompasses Puget Sound and

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Anglers battle elements to chase trout

Another opening day of the lowland lakes trout season has come and gone. Anglers on both sides of the mountains had to deal with iffy weather: cold, wind, rain and occasional snow flurries.

State Department of Fish and Wildlife staff and volunteers reported checking 4,801 anglers with 11,100 trout from 116 lakes statewide on Saturday. Anglers checked statewide averaged 2.2 trout kept per angler, with many more trout caught and released during the day. 

Here are the opening day reports from the department. The lake’s name is followed by the number of anglers checked, the number of fish kept,

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