icons/avalancheicons/bootscompassfacebookicons/gloveshandsicons/hearticons/helmeticons/ice axeinstagramminusmountainicons/pathsMap Pinplusicons/questionicons/guideicons/ropeicons/gogglesicons/stafftenttwitteryoutube
Cascades Climb with Mountain Madness

Family Climbing Trip — Finding New Possibilities in the Cascades

Here at Moun­tain Mad­ness, we love the oppor­tu­ni­ty to get out to the moun­tains with younger gen­er­a­tions of climbers. It gives us some per­spec­tive and per­haps allows us to pri­or­i­tize a new agen­da. One great way to do that is to set up a cus­tom climb or course with our guides and we will make sure our itin­er­ary fits your fam­i­ly’s needs. 

Last week­end I had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to work with Doug and his 11-year-old daugh­ter, Gina, in the Wash­ing­ton Pass area. Our goals stayed con­sis­tent through­out our 4‑day trip. They were; learn to trav­el well in the moun­tains; tech­niques for mov­ing effi­cient­ly, and man­age our risk in a moun­tain envi­ron­ment. We also had plans to get our­selves phys­i­cal­ly exhaust­ed and have a blast doing it. 

Rob Schiess­er photo

As we crest­ed over the pass from Seat­tle, the sky opened up and the warmth of the Methow Val­ley beck­oned us to prac­tice rock climb­ing move­ment skills. Here we are prac­tic­ing var­i­ous knots and the basics of 5th class climb­ing skills and rope work.

Gina enjoy­ing some gourmet piz­za! Doug DeLancey photo

For our first night in camp we had what I would con­sid­er a restau­rant qual­i­ty din­ing expe­ri­ence. Not bad for the camp food. Piz­za with fresh moz­zarel­la, basil and pepperoni. 

Rob belay­ing Gina on Fun Rock. Doug DeLancey photo

Our sec­ond day we got into the busi­ness of belay­ing and climb­ing ver­ti­cal crack sys­tems. We also inves­ti­gat­ed anchor build­ing sys­tems and rock pro­tec­tion. We fin­ished the day off with a vis­it to Winthrop and some home­made ice cream.

Not a bad place to set up camp! Rob Schiess­er photo

We left our vehi­cle at the hair­pin turn and head­ed into Kan­ga­roo Pass for the moun­taineer­ing por­tion of the trip. We were greet­ed by sev­er­al skiers on our way in as well as gor­geous temps and a gen­er­al­ly firm snow­pack. After estab­lish­ing a camp below what appeared to be the hulk­ing ram­parts of Wal­la­by Peak above, we got right into learn­ing the intri­ca­cies of trav­el­ing over tech­ni­cal snow slopes. 

On the ascent! Rob Schiess­er photo

We began our ascent of Wal­la­by peak with per­fect cram­pon­ing con­di­tions. On the fly, we learned about the walk­ing styles that would give us the abil­i­ty to ascend the more tech­ni­cal slopes of Wal­la­by Peak above.

All smiles at the top of Wal­la­by Peak. Doug DeLancey photo

After our ascent we hung out and gath­ered our sens­es to pre­pare for the hike out. We had a blast and, look­ing back at the peak and our 2,400 foot ascent from camp, found some per­spec­tive on what can be accom­plished even in the thick of doubts and fear. At Moun­tain Mad­ness we are in a line of busi­ness to help our guests man­age their emo­tions on a climb while con­tin­u­ing the lan­guage of possibility.

~ MM Guide Rob Schiesser

Great Father-Daugh­ter team! Doug DeLancey photo

From Dad:

Our trip was exact­ly what I had hoped for and exceed­ed all expec­ta­tions, due to Rob’s pro­fes­sion­al­ism, skill, out­stand­ing atti­tude and just a knack for when Gina need­ed a lit­tle space to work through her fears. Rob planned an absolute­ly per­fect Cus­tom Trip for us that was the best imag­in­able com­bi­na­tion of skills and fun. He han­dled over ten thou­sand ques­tions from Gina, and was always great to be around.

I could­n’t have hoped for a bet­ter trip, and I want you to know he rep­re­sent­ed MM amaz­ing­ly well. Our adven­ture was safe and excit­ing. I know Rob has a great future, as does your company.

Thank you for an expe­ri­ence that Gina and I will remem­ber forever. 

~ Doug DeLancey

Tak­ing a break. Doug DeLancey photo

From Daugh­ter:

Ever been to the top of an 8,000 foot moun­tain? Ever camp out in the snow? I sure have and it’s not easy, try doing it in 20 feet of snow. Yeah! And here’s a plus, I got to wake up at 4:00 in the morn­ing in freez­ing weath­er. But it is fun. I went to Seat­tle, Wash­ing­ton with my father and our guide Robert, Rob for short… We rock climbed huge moun­tains. I have to admit it was scary at times, but I was roped in so I would­n’t fall. My dad and I had a great time. We had home­made piz­za. It was deli­cious. Our guide Rob made it, he was a good cook… We climbed a big­ger rock face…and learned some new tech­niques. I was scared, but I did­n’t show it too much, I think… I did­n’t get all the way to the top, but my dad got far­ther than me, go Dad­dy! After that we got some ice cream… best ice cream, ever. We had salmon that night, it was good, too. We went to sleep… woke up at 4:00 in the morn­ing… had to get straight to climb­ing Wal­la­by Peak. It was almost the hard­est thing I have ever done. It took 4 hours to climb, not to men­tion it was freez­ing. But like I said, fun! 

~ Gina DeLancey