The Mountaineers. The Mountaineers have grown to over 10,000 members in 1979, with the attendant problems of meeting the needs and desires of so many. As the club has grown, new interests have developed. A few years ago we instituted additional winter activities, which have now grown to the same proportions as the summer ones. Besides the club’s four ski lodges in the Washington Cascades, we now have courses in snow- shoeing, Nordic skiing, and ski mountaineering, which begin at first snowfall and continue through to spring.
The climbing courses continue as popular as ever, so popular that in all fairness to those who want to take the courses, we have established eligibility based on length of membership in the club. A few years ago we developed an “Alpine Scramblers” course, which takes the student up to the use of the rope. We begin these courses with 250 students. This past season we graduated 126 basic climbing students, 93 alpine scramblers, and another 17 from the Intermediate (advanced) course, which requires a minimum of two years and a maximum of five for graduation. In addition, we offer courses in camping and backpacking, which take the absolute novice into competence in the mountains.
We also offer outings for the members, from a week or more in the United States for climbers and backpackers to a month in a foreign outing. In 1979 we had five backpacking outings, three climbers’ outings, and three foreign outings to Austria, Iceland, and New Zealand.