Summerland had been selected as a base for a variety of Mountaineer activities during their excursion. The little visited area was found by the Mountaineers to be rich in scenic wonder. With much to focus on, each photographer captured appealing examples of botanical splendor.
Meadows contained carpets of flowers on a plateau carved by receding glaciers. Mountain asters and lilies competed for one’s attention. From afar the startling white avalanche lilies looked like snowfields. Up close one could see the contrast of their golden centers and white petals. On the periphery bloomed clumps of stunted heather.
Trees faced a very short growing season in the high elevation. Those that survived were rugged and showed evidence of frequent high winds and deep snow packs. Subalpine fir stood out majestically in sparse clumps. Fir branches pointed the way of the wind blowing off of the glaciers. A tree that survived many winters gained strength in girth but not in height. Viewers made note of the odd shape that resulted when a tree struggled to grow upward.
White bark pines solved the harsh weather problem by growing along the ground before adding height. Clumps of pines were short, flattened to a standard height.
Chef Carr, with white apron, and volunteer assistant cooks, started early preparation of breakfast for a hungry camp. The Mountaineers were greeted by a special view of an icy Mt. Rainier, brightly lit by the morning sunlight. "Cookee," an honorary assistant chef, made sure the fire burned hot in the portable stove. The Mountaineers lined up near the serving area. Each was equipped with utensils and appetites.
Popular Chef Carr worked morning, noon, and evening at his craft in Summerland. After breakfast a group of volunteer "Nut Crackers," prepared nuts for "Carr’s cake" special dinner dessert.
Fred Q. Gorton, "Chief Scout," formed a climbing party and tested their skills on the south lobe of the Fryingpan Glacier. The soles of all of the climbing boots were checked to make sure that the metal "calks," nailed into the boots, would provide sufficient grip on ice or snow.
The party followed a branch of Fryingpan Creek to the stubby snout of the Fryingpan Glacier.
The women and men practiced the use of alpenstocks for control of balance and as a steering mechanism when "coasting" or glissading.
Copyright © 2002 Tacoma Public Library