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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

Category: Climbing
June 9, 2014 at 6:04 AM

Mount Rainier accident: Stop blaming climbers for costs

A photo provided by the National Park Service shows Liberty Ridge and the Carbon Glacier, with a helicopter at top right. (National Park Service)

Like many in the climbing community, I was sad to see the recent Rainier climbing accident, and proud of the rangers, guide service and community response [“Liberty Ridge is risky, deadly Mount Rainier route,” Local News, June 2].  One thing I hope to address is the knee-jerk reaction that I almost always see online after any such accident:  Climbers (or their survivors) should be sent a


Comments | More in Climbing | Topics: climbing, Mount Rainier, National Park Service

May 23, 2014 at 4:54 PM

Mountain rescues: Taxpayers should not take on risk

Aviators fly the CH-47D Chinook helicopter at 8,500 feet, practicing a live hoist extraction on 14,411-foot Mount Rainier on Wednesday. A test dummy simulating a hiker was lowered on a stretcher, tended to medically and hoisted back up within an hour. (Steve Ringman / The Seattle Times)

There will always be individuals among us who want to partake in adrenaline pumping, limit pushing, not-for-the-weak-of-mind activities [“Mount Rainier rescuers practice for the inevitable,” Local News, May 21]. I myself have enjoyed the thrills of skydiving in the past.

But there are certain risks associated with these sports, and all those who participate must accept responsibility for their decisions. It was this notion that got me thinking: How can climbers in Washington, knowing full well the risks of their sport, and the unpredictable power of Mother Nature, in good conscious climb the


Comments | More in Climbing | Topics: Chris Toomey, climbing, Mother Nature

May 1, 2014 at 6:03 AM

Everest: Create higher payouts for Sherpas killed while working

The article about local charity efforts to raise funds to benefit the families of 16 Sherpas killed in an Everest climbing accident exposes troubling attitudes about the value of Nepali lives [“Many here work to help families of Sherpas killed on Everest,” Local News, April 24]. Currently, the mandatory life insurance payout for each…


Comments | More in Climbing | Topics: climbing, Everest, insurance

April 28, 2014 at 2:58 PM

Everest avalanche: Respect for Sherpas, help ensure support for families

A Nepalese government delegation meets with Sherpa mountain guides last week near Everest base camp in Nepal. (ADRIAN BALLINGER, ALPENGLOW EXPEDITIONS / AP)

We have all been affected by the tragedy that killed 13 members of the Sherpa community — three more remain missing and are presumed dead [“Many here work to help families of Sherpas killed on Everest,” Local News, April 24].

We appreciate those who have gracefully left the mountain to allow the families, friends and the Sherpa community to grieve and to show respect to


Comments | More in Climbing | Topics: Everest, Pasang Gelzen Sherpa