Article and Photo By Keir Hart
I get antsy on planes. It’s not like I’m afraid to fly. On the contrary, I fly all over the world. It’s just that, inevitably, I start to squirm around like I have ants in my pants. My book and inflight entertainment can only keep me occupied for so long. Thank goodness for the aisle seat.
“I’m so bored,” I was thinking to myself just as I heard the static from the pilot’s headset crackle from the overhead speaker.
“For those of you on the left side of the plane, we have a good view of Mt Rainier.” Every person on the plane spun their head around to get a glimpse of the volcano. My mouth dropped. The glacier capped mountain loomed outside the window like a white-haired sumo wrestler, and felt about as intimidating. The ice sparkled in the sun, broken only by rock and the deep crevasses that fractured the trail to the summit. Towering at 14,410 feet above sea level, Mt Rainier is the most glaciated peak in the contiguous US. Climbers often use the mountain as a training ground for higher peaks like Aconcagua and Everest. My heart pounded as a small smile spread across my face. I was going to climb that.