On our last day at Mt. Rainier, WA (this past Sunday), we heard it hit 95 degrees down in the foothills along the i-90 corridor on the eastside of Seattle. Needless to say, we were glad to still be on Mt. Rainier where temps remained much lower. Our crew split up with many opting to head higher to Paradise. However, we decided to stay and hike the Glacier Basin trail where we could park in some shade (at the White River campground) for Trooper dog. Turns out the 3.5 mile (1,280 vertical ft) hike up was a helluva lot drier than last year – we weren’t able to put skins on until after reaching Glacier Basin wilderness camp (elevation 5,965 ft). Those who question the effects of global warming need only do a hike on a hot, sunny day where there are patches of snow: the huge temperature difference between hiking on dry land vs. on snow will have you convinced about the dramatic accelerated warming that occurs when we start to lose our glaciers. Fortunately, much of the trail up to Glacier Basin camp is shaded. The camp itself is still under snow but it’s getting patchy. What’s left around Glacier Basin and lower Mt. Ruth and Inter Glacier are pretty sun cupped – more so than we’re used to this time of the year in Washington. The better snow looks to be above 7000 ft. We’ll have video of the conditions soon so please visit again. In the meantime, take a look at the photos. If you’re headed that way, look out for a black bear (brown color)- it’s following Glacier Basin campers around looking for food. The rangers told us the bear’s a few years old, become habituated to people and will go through your pack if you leave it unattended. The bear hasn’t become aggressive yet and rangers would like folks to help scare the bear to keep it that way – haze it with lots of noise, sticks and stones in the butt – watch the video to see how they do it. They’d like us to help remind folks that this is a wild animal and we’re on its turf so don’t approach it and take any chances. He’s not Yogi Bear and this is not Jellystone Park (and if you didn’t know, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park exists as a chain of campground resorts! Outside of the Pacific NW where we have the real deal). Live to ski another day!