I have attempted Curtis Ridge and have friends that have sent it http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthr ... ber=578246
, but they are very, very strong climbers and one of them took a leader fall on the route (the other fellow recently made the second winter ascent of Mt Huntington, in a day). The rock on Rainier is generally horrible, but the crux rock pitch, which has gone free, is on reportedly decent rock. Some parties take the Wickwire variation which avoids the rock crux in favor of water ice.
Curtis Ridge is one of the more difficult and seldom climbed routes on Rainier. The Roskelly/Lowe route on the Sunset Amphitheatre Headwall is the only route I can think of that is more difficult on Rainier. One SPer, a strong ice and rock climber from Colorado took one look at the easier Ptarmigan Ridge and declared the route to be too dangerous for him. (Two partners of mine climbed it a couple of days before). My point is, if you have never done Rainier before, you may want to try something more reasonable before spending the time/money/effort to get shut down. If you do Curtis Ridge, I would recommend doing it as early as possible so that the rock is frozen, decreasing rock fall.
The White River Road (the best approach) typically opens Memorial Day weekend. I would plan to go as soon as the road opens and the weather forecast is decent. When I attempted it, we followed the footsteps of two experienced climbers from Colorado who were attempting Liberty Ridge. They came in the day before us. We turned around due to bad weather, the Colorado guys were already on LR. One of them died, a friend was the medic in the helocotper who retrieved the body.
Take home message: Curtis Ridge is a BFD, don't take it lightly. If the mountains you list on your profile are the sum total of your climbing experience then you have absolutely no business going anywhere near the North side of Rainier. Stick to the Emmons.