Who We Are

The Mazamas promotes climbing, responsible recreation, and conservation values through outdoor education, advocacy, and outreach.

Founded in 1894 on the summit of Mt. Hood, the Mazamas a nonprofit mountaineering education organization located in Portland, Oregon. The Mazamas offer over 700 hikes and 350 climbs annually. A variety of classes and activities are offered for every skill and fitness level and are open to both members and nonmembers.

Mazama Beta

General Information

Membership

Join us! Anyone who has summitted a glaciated peak is eligible to join the Mazamas. We have members from ages 4–104, and more than 850 individuals who have been members for more than 25 years. 

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Mazama Mountaineering Center

The Mazama Mountaineering Center (MMC) is located at SE 43rd and Stark. At the MMC, our facilities include 4 meeting rooms, a 175-seat auditorium, a library, administrative offices, and our museum/archives. Office and library hours are Mon-Thurs, 11 a.m.–7 p.m., and Friday, 10 a.m.–2 p.m

Publications

The Mazamas is a active community of individuals who have a vast array of stories to tell. From first climbing experiences to pushing limits to stories of exploration and research, our publications contain something for everyone.

  1. Mazama Magazine: A monthly publications filled with timely stories and notices.
  2. Mazama Annual: Our annual journal. Contains reports, stories, and in-depth articles.
  3. Mazama Annual Report: Our annual financial report.

Organizational Structure

The Mazamas consists of an Executive Board (the Mazama Executive Council), staff, and volunteers. 

The board consists of nine members and is elected by the membership. The board is responsible for hiring the Executive Director, who is in turn in charge of hiring and managing the staff. Volunteers hold a variety of roles at the Mazama, including climb and hike leaders, instructors, class coordinators, and much more. 

Classes & Education

Each year we teach a variety of courses in mountaineering related fields for students of all levels. For most classes, you do not need to be a member, and most classes have lectures open to those who are not in the class.  We offer classes in basic and intermediate mountaineering, advanced rock climbing, advanced snow and beginning ice climbing, ski mountaineering, first aid, nordic skiing, and much more. 

Mountaineering & Climbing

Mountaineering is the primary activity enjoyed by our members. Climbs are open to anyone who meets the qualifications set by individual leaders. We offer climbs on everything from Mount St. Helens and South Sister to Forbidden Peak.

Hiking

Hiking is one of the most popular activities of our members, with more than 700 hikes organized each year. In 2017 there were hiking opportunities on 83% of the days of the year! Our hiking program includes moderate hikes, strenuous conditioning hikes, trail tending (work trips), backpacks, snow bivouacs, snowshoe trips, street rambles and short, family-oriented walks around Portland. Most of the hikes are within easy driving distance of Portland, with several offered each weekend, as well as weekday and evening hikes. 

Trail Tending

The Mazamas actively promotes the establishment and maintenance of hiking trails through its trail tending work. Trails such as Trapper Creek, Chetwoot Loop, and Mazama Trail were created by and are regularly maintained by the Mazamas. Mazama Trail Tenders were instrumental in re-opening many trails in the Columbia Gorge which had been hit hard by the devastating storms of early 1996. We expect to be heavily involved in helping the Columbia Gorge recover from the destructive fire of 2017. 

Travel

Annual Outings range in duration from five days to three weeks. They vary in scope and number from year to year, depending on the volunteer leadership. Most of the outings involve climbing or hiking but also may be skiing, geology, or even wine-tasting! Although most outings are held in the Western United States, many travel to foreign destinations.  

Conservation

In addition the recreational activities of the Mazamas, conservation is central to the Mazamas’ mission. Since inception, the Mazamas has played a significant role in preserving wilderness areas for posterity. Historically we played a role in establishing Crater Lake and Mt. Rainier as national parks, in the preservation of the Oregon Caves as a national monument, and in setting aside the original 4,000 acres in the city of Portland as Forest Park.

The Mazamas endeavour to maintain a close liaison with officials in all land managing public agencies to insure that the viewpoint of those who access and enjoy outdoor areas is clearly understood by authorities. 

Evening Travel Programs

Informative and entertaining programs are held at the Mazama Mountaineering Center each Wednesday evening, October through April. The outdoor-oriented programs are free and open to the public, and range from movies and slide shows to lectures and demonstrations. 

Used Equipment Sale

A used equipment sale, sponsored by the Trail Trips Committee, is held annually in the spring. This is a great opportunity to find bargains in gear for hiking, camping, climbing and skiing; and a great way to sell surplus outdoor clothing and equipment and support the Mazamas at the same time.