Among the many legendary peaks in Washington’s North Cascades, Mount Baker stands out for its sheer mass of ice and snow. At 10,781 ft (3286 m), this heavily glaciated and active stratovolcano is the highest point in the North Cascades. This, coupled with its easy accessibility, makes it the perfect venue for upgrading your mountaineering skills and one of the best spots for skiing in Washington. The ascent is moderate but very engaging, and the complex terrain with modest elevation creates the ideal environment for acclimating to the mountain. Camps along the steep Coleman Glacier route are a breathtaking introduction to high-altitude camping, providing some of the most outstanding alpine vistas in the United States. Using your newfound skills to conquer the summit is an experience that’s guaranteed to make you fall in love with mountaineering.

  • Spend the night at one of the most scenic campsites in North America

  • Master the fundamentals of mountaineering in the magnificent Cascades

  • Test your newly-learned skills with a summit attempt on the stunning Mount Baker

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Mount Baker Glacier Mountaineering Skills Seminar
Jul 01
Early Bird: Mount Baker Glacier Mountaineering Skills Seminar
Jul 2024
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Meet your guide

Blackbird Guides
Blackbird Guides
Blackbird Mountain Guides is here to help you push farther, faster, and smarter. Their ultimate goal is to help you develop awareness, efficiency, and a good decision-making philosophy in the mountains. Whether they’re guiding a "type-1-fun" adventure, helping you develop skills to meet your next mountain objective, or playing in their time off, the Blackbird Mountain Guides team strives to move in good style.

Things to know

  • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

    We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Mount Baker, Washington, please refer to the Washington State Department of Health’s COVID-19 travel guidelines.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

  • What you get in this adventure:

      • An experienced, certified mountaineering instructor with extensive knowledge of the area
      • A pre-trip meeting and gear check in Glacier, WA
      • 3 full days of mountaineering
      • All group gear, including tents, stoves, ropes, guide’s first aid kits, etc.

    What’s not included:

      • Mountaineering equipment
      • Transportation
      • Accommodation in Glacier, WA
      • Food and snacks
  • In order to take part in this mountaineering seminar, you will need to have a high level of cardiovascular fitness. You will be on your feet for 3 full days, learning athletic movements that involve your entire body. While there is terrain for all skill levels in Mount Baker, you will need to manage controlled descents in variable conditions. All participants should feel comfortable on challenging blue or black-level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

  • This program is an introductory course designed to provide an understanding of the techniques and tools used in classic mountaineering. As such, there are no prerequisite skills. If you’ve never mountaineered before, this course is your best bet. They’ll take care of the planning, introduce you to the basics, like skinning uphill, and teach you how to manage the terrain. They also have the experience and avalanche training to keep you safe.

  • For technical mountaineering gear, you will need to bring:

      • Climbing helmet
      • Headlamp
      • Climbing harness
      • Two locking carabiners
      • Triple action locking carabiner
      • Double length sling
      • Belay device
      • Climbing boots
      • Gaiters
      • Crampons
      • Semi-technical ice tool — a curved tool with a pommel for glacier walking and steep snow/ice climbing
      • Technical ice tool — aggressive curved tool for steep ice
      • Trekking poles

    For clothing, we recommend bringing:

      • Sun hat
      • Sunglasses — dark lens glasses with side coverage
      • Goggles
      • Warm hat
      • Neck gaiters
      • Long sleeve base layer — lightweight, synthetic, or wool
      • 2 insulating top layers — light to midweight insulation layers
      • Puffy — midweight down or synthetic with hood
      • Hardshell jacket, hooded — waterproof, Gore-Tex, not insulated
      • Light & midweight gloves
      • Underwear — wool or synthetic
      • Socks — midweight wool/synthetic
      • Long underwear — wool or synthetic
      • Softshell climbing pants
      • Hardshell climbing pants – light, gore-tex pants, full zip are ideal to put on with boots/crampons on

    For food & camping equipment, you will need to bring:

      • Dinner — your favorite freeze dried or “just-add-hot-water” meal for each night in the field
      • Breakfast — your favorite freeze dried or “just-add-hot-water” meal for each morning in the field
      • Hot drinks — instant coffee, decaffeinated tea, hot cocoa, tang, whatever you prefer
      • Half liter nalgene bottle — a hard sided water bottled that can act as your mug for hot drinks and water bottle
      • Soft water bottle 1.5L — flexible water bladder
      • Water treatment or filtration
      • Bowl and spoon
      • Snacks & lunch for every day of the trip
      • Sleeping bag — down or synthetic rated to 20F
      • Sleeping pad — insulated inflatable air mattress
      • Compression stuff — to pack your sleeping bag; ultralight compression sack 10L
      • Backpack – lightweight, simple 50 liter pack

    Finally, here’s a list of other personal items we recommend bringing:

      • Sunscreen (SPF 30 minimum)
      • Lip balm (with SPF)
      • Hand sanitizer
      • Toilet paper
      • Wag bags (Solid Human Waste Disposal Bags)
      • First aid/blister Kit
      • Camera — optional
      • Chemical hand warmers — optional
  • Mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent with Glacier Ski Shop in Glacier, WA, or with Ascent Outdoors in Seattle, WA. Rentals should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent great, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

  • Group sizes and pricing:

      • For this seminar, the usual client-to-guide ratio is 2:1.
      • The price doesn’t decrease as the group grows.

    The mountaineering seminar on Mount Baker can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors may be permitted to join this course on a case-by-case basis.

    If your group has mountaineers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Glacier, WA, the starting point of this tour, most people fly into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport 2,5 hours away. From there, you can rent a car, or take a bus or train.

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, whether that’s at the guide shop in Glacier or a predetermined location. From there, you’ll head to your tour. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ski ability of the group.

  • Secure your spot for next year with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you will be the first one to know about any new upcoming dates. Pick your preferred dates without the risk of your bucket list adventure selling out!
    • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure any time in case the dates don’t suit you.
    • Once the dates for 2024 are set, you can confirm your booking by the end of this year by paying another 20% of the total amount.
    • The final balance is due 3 months (90 days) prior to departure.
    • Once the trip has been confirmed, the regular cancellation policy applies.
  • For regular dates, a 30% deposit to secure your place is due upon booking. Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancellation policy stated below applies, and deposits are no longer refundable. The remaining 70% of the amount is paid the latest 3 months (90 days) prior the departure.
    In the event that the minimum number of people to confirm the adventure is not reached, your guide can cancel the departure at most 2 months before the start of the trip. Please note the adventures for 2024 are expected to reach the minimum number of people soon, and the likelihood of trip not happening is very low.
    In case you need to cancel the adventure, the following cancellation costs would be incurred:
    • The deposit is non-refundable once the trip has been confirmed
    • 70% of the adventure price is refundable if canceled 59 days or more before departure, once the trip has been confirmed
    • 50% of the adventure price is refundable if canceled 30-59 days before departure
    • 25% of the adventure price is refundable if canceled 16-29 days before departure
    • 0% of the price of the trip if it is canceled 15 days before departure.
    All policies regarding cancellation will be clearly laid out by your guide after booking your adventure.
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