Alpenglow Ski Mountaineering History Project Home
Seattle Magazine, 1969
Seattle Magazine, Dec 1969, p. 49 - Thompson, Tim, "The Ski-Climbers"This important article includes brief recollections by Hans-Otto Giese of his ski-climbs of Mt Rainier in 1928, Mt Adams in 1932, and Mt St Helens in 1933. The author correctly notes that the 1928 Rainier climb "ushered in a sport new to the Pacific Northwest--ski mountaineering."
"Throughout the thirties and forties, others trudged to the top of Mount Rainier on the climbing, or cross-country skis. But today, no one makes full ski ascents on the highest peak in the state, and--although hundreds of thousands of Northwesterners have become avid skiers since the twenties--only a handful ski up any of the other mountains of the Cascades." The author calls ski mountaineers a "dying breed."
Since 1962, both the Mountaineers and the UW Intramural Activities Department have had ski mountaineering courses in which some 250 students have enrolled. A Mountaineer instructor estimates that graduates of the two courses represent about 75 percent of all ski mountaineering enthusiasts in the Northwest. Giese observes, "People are too lazy now. They'd rather sit on a chair, get hauled up, ski down and then take the next chair up--just like a yo-yo."
The article includes the following photos:
- Walter Best leads three men up the Interglacier during the 1928 ski-climb of Mt Rainier.
- Hans-Otto Giese and another man rest on the slopes of Mt Adams during the 1932 ski descent.
- A skier (Giese?) stands next to a deep crevasse and peers down into it.
Return to the Alpenglow Ski Mountaineering History Project home page