This page is part of a larger set of posts about my trip to climb Mt Rainier.
I was traveling alone and had already spent considerable money on this trip, so I elected to room at the Whittaker Bunkhouse. I took the option to sleep in the shared bunk space for $35. I must say Lou Whittaker is quite the smart business man. He established several businesses that all complement each other quite nicely, and are conveniently collocated in what is called “Rainier Basecamp”
Rainer Basecamp consists of:
- RMI (Guide Service)
- Whittaker Bunkhouse (Lodging)
- Whittaker Mountaineering (A good mountaineering store and gear rental shop)
- Bar and Grill
- Coffee / Ice cream shop (part of bunkhouse)
All of the businesses were well run and very convenient. I had two dinners at the bar and grill, and ate breakfast both mornings at the coffee shop. Be aware there is a rush when the coffee shop opens at 6:40, and when climbers return on the bus. The girls at the front desk were very friendly, and helpful even when things were busy.
The bunkhouse met my expectations and was very adequate lodging for the two nights preceding my climb. It was fun to hang out with the other climbers instead of sitting in a room by yourself. There was no wifi in the bunkhouse itself. I spent most of my evenings sitting on the porch in front of reception. Here I was able to get a good wifi signal, and single bar of Verizon coverage. The bed in the bunkhouse was soft and a little bit lumpy. It was also quite hot and the rooms do not include air conditioning. We opened the windows and it did cool down enough to sleep by late at night. The coffee shop had really good coffee (tully’s espresso) and pretty good breakfast options. The key to enjoyment here is to have the correct level of expectations. You are there to climb a mountain not relax at the 4 seasons. The comforts and service are much better than the alternative of camping, but certainly not resort level.