If you missed it, you’re bummed. Attendees from the fourth annual Mt. Rainier retailer event hosted by K2 snowboards on June 27¿30, had such a good time, they called into TransWorld from the top of their climb to tell us about the beautiful view.

“This trip has been the best,” exclaimed Kevin Cortez of the Snowboard Connection in Seattle. “This is the third time I have been on a K2 trip. You can see forever.”

The trip began in Seattle, where about 45 retailers from around the country ferried out to Vashon Island to the K2 factory. After a night of partying, camping, and deep meditation in a teepee, the group woke up and toured the factory.

Then they headed back to the mainland, where they were met by a number of stragglers who joined in for the Mt. Rainier climb.

The procession, which swelled to 70, spent the night at the base of the mountain enjoying yet another night of bonding rituals. At 5:00 a.m. the following morning the crew was up, and by seven the ascent began. The group climbed six miles and 5,300 feet in elevation before reaching their 9,700-foot destination¿Steamboat Prow, a lower peak within the Mt. Rainier area.

Participants in the event had plenty to say as they passed the cell phone around the group: “I’ve never gotten up at four in the morning to do anything except go to the bathroom,” said David Sher of Sacramento’s Mountain Surf and Sport shop.

“It’s incredible up here,” said Colorado Snowboards’ Rob Good. “You definitely earn the feelings you get.” The whole group seemed to be pleased with everything from the 28 degree weather to the 360 degree view of Washington.

After a celebratory Jägermeister shot and a rest, the group strapped in and rode down the mountain toward civilization. When asked whether they would do it again, every person we talked to said yes.

Interested in going on this trip next year? Contact Luke Edgar at K2: 1-800-972-4038.

¿Shanti Sosienski