Amid warmth wave, Seattle climbers grew to become initial group to summit and ski 5 Washington volcanoes in 5 times

As Seattleites languished in hotels and lined their windows with foil through very last week’s historic warmth wave, Trevor Kostanich and Scott Rinckenberger achieved a mountaineering milestone. They climbed, summited and skied down the state’s five volcanoes in 5 times.

In what Kostanich and Rinckenberger referred to as the “Five in 5,” the two became the very first mountaineers to climb and ski Mount Rainier, Mount St. Helens, Mount Adams, Mount Baker and Glacier Peak in 5 consecutive days. They began at Mount Rainier’s Glacier Basin trailhead at 1 a.m. on June 24, and completed up at Glacier Peak’s North Fork Sauk River trailhead at 9:30 p.m. on June 28. In among, they traversed Mount St. Helens, Mount Adams and Mount Baker.

The closest precedent Rinckenberger could discover to their historic first was a 2017 endeavor by a group of Ellensburg police officers, who summited the five volcanoes in five times and 15-furthermore several hours, but didn’t ski.

An additional climber, Peter Avolio, “got the vision” of “Five in Five” from examining about the Ellensburg cops, claimed Kostanich. The two made an endeavor in June 2018. They hit 4 mountains, but bailed on Glacier Peak because of to climate worries: An inch of rain adopted inside 24 several hours.


Avolio, Kostanich and Rinckenberger made an endeavor alongside one another earlier this summer months, but stopped midway by when they understood they would not complete their goal in time.

Kostanich reported he’d felt confident he could get it accomplished in his most current attempt, but then June’s warmth dome arrived above the West Coast — and lingered. “This forecast began to add more issue,” he said.

Substantial temperatures existing extra obstacles for climbers. With exaggerated and a lot quicker melt, there is an increased risk that snowbridges will collapse, with the far more glaciated parts the most at risk.

For this explanation, reported Kostanich, he and Rinckenberger “didn’t want to be on Mount Rainier with a lot more aim hazards” on the best times, so they begun their endeavor with Mount Rainier, obtaining it out of the way in advance of temperatures spiked on June 28.

Trevor Kostanich crosses below a cascading waterfall on the Heliotrope Ridge trail during the exit from Mount Baker. Each peak required significant mileage of trail walking before skis could be employed on the glaciers and seasonal snow fields. (Scott Rinckenberger)


Ordinarily, climbers earning an attempt like this would make an alpine start off early in the morning, and Kostanich claimed he and Rinckenberger “exaggerated” this notion, leaving at 10 p.m. for each the Mount Adams and Mount Baker stretches of the journey. Departing after dusk, they traveled in the course of the night time and skied down the mountain 1st thing in the early morning.

This minimal the time they used in the warm sunshine, decreasing the chance of heat exhaustion, sunshine exposure and dehydration, and made it probable to vacation effectively and safely and securely inspite of the severe temperature scorching the state, as Seattle logged its a few best days in recorded historical past and temperatures peaked at 108 levels, all involving June 26 and June 28.

Counterintuitively, the heat temperatures introduced a number of unexpected rewards. Commonly, reported Kostanich, climbing by means of the night time means “the snow floor is icy, with chilly winds,” but alternatively, he and Rinckenberger observed the temperatures ended up nice and the snow floor easy thanks to the hot weather conditions.

At the commencing of their vacation, a full moon authorized them to travel safely and securely without headlamps.

“The trip necessitates a large amount of organizing,” he reported, but good results also is dependent on what circumstances crop up in the minute. “What we saw was far more beneficial than anticipated, and there is a great deal of situations what we see, we don’t like, and we convert close to.”

Continue to, he claimed, “we realized we have been in difficulty for heat on our last volcano” — Glacier Peak, which expected about 36 miles of travel. They timed the vacation so they’d summit in the morning and commit the most sun-exposed hours of the working day returning to the trailhead, dipping their heads in streams and creeks along the way to cool off. They concluded the journey on June 28, at the warmth wave’s peak.

Trevor Kostanich, left, and Scott Rinckenberger celebrate their fifth volcano summit in five days on the top of Glacier Peak. The most remote, and most pristine of the Washington volcanoes, Glacier Peak would prove a significant test, but would also provide a spectacular wilderness experience, and a fitting adventure to end the journey. All told, the round trip to the summit of Glacier peak included 36.6 miles and 13,140 feet of elevation. The team would arrive at the North Fork Sauk trailhead at 9:25 p.m., which put them just a few hours ahead of their self-imposed midnight deadline for completing the “Five in Five.” (Scott Rinckenberger)


Kostanich and Rinckenberger did not camp alongside the way, but summited all the volcanoes “in a single push with out any right away equipment,” mentioned Rinckenberger. In concerning mountains, Kostanich and Rinckenberger took turns driving whilst the other rested.

A mate, Chris Shalbot, picked up the driving on the final two mountains, when “the double photographs of espresso weren’t lasting as a lot of minutes as they ended up supposed to,” stated Kostanich.

The genuine MVP of the vacation came in the motor vehicle belonging to Rinckenberger. He drives a Ford F-150, Kostanich explained, and “his truck experienced great A/C.”