It’s hard to know why three experienced mountain climbers decided to climb Mt. Hood in the winter. It seems a needless loss of life. Why not climb it in the summer? It’s like going to look for Dracula at night. Why not wait until broad daylight? We are driven by the human or animal spirit to seek the unknown and the impossible dream.
At the beginning of Hemingway’s story The Snows of Kilimanjaro, he writes the following:
Kilimanjaro is a snow covered mountain 19,720 feet high, and is said to be the highest mountain in Africa. Its western summit is called the Masai, the House of God. Close to the western summit there is the dried and frozen carcass of a leopard. No one has explained what the leopard was seeking at that altitude.
Perhaps the three climbers had the same mission as the leopard.