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Here are some of the more common questions we hear about our activities, events and policies. Feel free to ask your own question if you don’t see yours here!
Why would anyone do something as silly as climb a mountain?
Ahh, the age old question. To paraphrase the British veteran climber Sir Chris Bonington:
Most climbers will likely tell you that they climb for some combination of these reasons. What do you think?
Do you have regular meetings I can attend?
As our membership is around 3,000, we do not have regular meetings. If you’d like to attend some activities and get to know some Mazamas, here are a few suggestions:
I want to join the Mazamas, but have not climbed a glaciated peak . What are the peaks I can climb that have a glacier?
The peaks in Oregon that one can climb to qualify for Mazama membership are: Mt. Thielsen, Broken Top, South, Middle and North Sister, Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Hood. In Washington, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Pinnacle Peak in Mt. Rainier NP as well as many other peaks in the North Cascades have glaciers. In California, Mt. Shasta and several peaks in the central and southern Sierra have glaciers. Of these peaks, South Sister, Mt. St. Helens and Old Snowy (WA) generally have the easiest, non-technical routes, and are most easily hiked in the late summer.
We offer a Hike to the Summit program in August and September each year, where we schedule hikes/climbs to the top of these easier non-technical peaks so people without much experience can have the satisfaction of reaching a summit and become eligible to join.
I don’t want to climb a glaciated peak, but I still want to participate in Mazama activities. How can I do this?
All Mazama activities are open to everyone, member or non-member. There are hundreds of people who hike with us for many years who are not members. To keep up-to-date with our activities, you may subscribe to the monthly bulletin for $15 per year. The bulletin lists all Mazama hikes, climbs, classes, programs, and outings.
What kinds of hikes do you offer?
We have over 700 hikes a year, mostly within an hour or two of Portland. Hikes are listed on our web site and published monthly in the Mazama bulletin. Hikes are graded in both difficulty and pace, so there’s a hike for every fitness and ability level. Current hike schedule
I want to get into rock climbing. What do you have for me?
We currently offer the following types of rock training:
What are the 10 essentials?
These are the generally accepted “10 E’s” - sensible preparedness and emergency gear you should strongly consider bringing on any day or overnight trip. Pack these for a long day hike as well as any overnight camping trips or climbs. (You may want to add a mylar space blanket as well.) A detailed gear list for everything else you may need is also on this site, as well as a suggested food list.
How do I go on a Mazama climb?
All Mazama climbs are open to members and non-members. You need to have sufficient skills and fitness for whatever climb you apply for. To apply for a climb, you need two things: A) a copy of the climb schedule and B) one climb card for each climb you want to do. Along with looking at the climbing overview, here’s the basic procedure.
I really want to climb Mt. Hood. Are the Mazamas a guide service? How can climb Hood if I have no experience?
While we do accept members and non-members on all Mazama climbs, the Mazamas are not a guide service in the classic sense of the word. We do not supply necessary gear or equipment or offer instruction while on the climb, and you need to have experience appropriate for the route you wish to climb. A guiding company typically provides certain gear (e.g., crampons, helmet, ice axe), will offer a day or two of instruction prior to the climb, and are usually willing to take someone with little or no mountaineering experience.
If you have never climbed and you really want to climb Mt. Hood, you have three basic options: A) Convince a friend who knows how to climb to take you; B) Apply for a Mazamas climb (being aware that climbs fill up quickly and many leaders like to see Mazamas Basic Climb School or its equivalent in your experience list); or C) Call a registered guide service and go with them. If you have either a large group or a tight schedule, a professional guiding company is likely to be your best bet. Please have a look at our climbing Mt. Hood FAQ page for more details on these and other questions many folks have about climbing Mt. Hood.
What are the 16 major Northwest Peaks?
The 16 major Northwest Peaks are (from south to north) Mt. Shasta, South Sister, Middle Sister, North Sister, Mt. Washington, Three Fingered Jack, Mt Jefferson, Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Rainier, Mt Stuart, Glacier Peak, Mt. Olympus, Mt. Baker and Mt Shuksan. The Mazamas award a “16 Peak” award to ambitious climbers who tag all of these peaks on official Mazama climbs. Climbs of these peaks often receive the most applications, so if you only apply to climb these mountains, you may be disappointed.
You folks don’t have the answer I need. I want to ask my own question.