Monday, June 9, 2008

Two More Denali Summits!

We have heard from Denali Teams 3 (Ice Agers) and Team 4, and they both summited! Team 3 - the Ice Agers - summited on Friday evening June 6th, and Team 4 reached the top on Saturday, June 7th! Read below for dispatches from lead guides Kurt Hicks and Mike Madden:

Mike reporting for Team 3:

"We left for the summit at 11:00am on Friday, in pretty reasonable weather so we decided to give it a look. We climbed under blue sky and the weather was fairly nice, but as we moved on to the summit ridge we were hammered by high winds and snow. The team worked hard to reach the summit and in spite of the wind, we made it! After we reached the summit we turned right around to get back to High Camp! We got back at 2:30am in the morning and the team was very happy. After drinking lots of water, the team went to bed. We will be heading to rest at Camp 3, and then moving down the mountain and hopefully flying off the glacier on Sunday."

Kurt reporting for Team 4:

"We left High Camp at 10:00am on Saturday. The weather was warm, except it was cold in the shade of Denali pass for the first two hours of the climb. Then, it felt like the temperature warmed up even though it was minus 15 degrees out! Our team moved steadily and efficiently up the mountain. We took a break when we reached the football field. Then we powered on up it, and saw friends and other guide services on the route. Everyone worked together to get everyone to the top. At 6:00pm we reached the summit! There was a light breeze with a few clouds but we had beautiful views of Mt. Foraker and other surrounding peaks. We didn't stay on the summit for long. Our group did not want to get held up on the ridge with a lot of other climbers, which is often the case on this part of the route. So we descended down the route, and it took about two hours to get back down Denali pass - which it took us six hours to get up! All was fine all the way down to High Camp. The plan is to get up early on Sunday and power down to Camp 3 and rest. We will then make the long hike down to base camp and wait to fly out!"

Check out our Dispatches webpage for more team updates and photos.

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