American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Bad Weather, Exposure, Washington, Mt. Ranier

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1979

BAD WEATHER, EXPOSURE Washington, Mt. Rainier

On September 8, Shirli Voight (30) of Denver and Guillermo Mendoza (28) of Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico, were found buried in the snow about 13,300 feet near Mount Rainier National Park’s Disappointment Cleaver climbing route.

“It didn’t appear they were caught in an avalanche,” said Larry Henderson, a Mount Rainier National Park spokesman. “It looks like it was just the weather.

We’ve had several days of very bad weather.” There was no immediate indication the climbers had pitched camp or attempted to take shelter. They apparently attempted to continue on through cold, punishing weather instead of holing up against a snowstorm that descended on them.

Other climbers say the pair at the 12,500-foot level and advised them not to proceed because of bad weather conditions. Voigt was director of the Colorado Mountaineering Club Mountaineering School; Mendoza was a student in Denver and a climbing instructor for the Mexican Mountaineering School. (Source: The Seattle Times)

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