She called from the top of Denali pass just a bit ago. They had to break trail the whole way. Denali pass is at 18,200'. I think Melis was out front the whole time, but Forrest could have been breaking some trail too. The traverse to the top of Denali pass is difficult and exposed in sections. Their are fixed pickets the entire way. Groups clip their ropes into these pickets (snow anchors) to safe gaurd themselves in the event of a slip or a fall.
While it is more difficult breaking trail at 18,000 feet, it makes for a nicer trail for everyone who follows in the front runner's footsteps. She said it looked more windblown up above, so she was hoping to make some better time up above. They made it to Denali Pass in just over 3 hours I think she said. That's not bad at all as it is. You can check the webcam link to the right. It looks like the weather is holding steady for them. I may or may not hear from them later.
good luck dawgs
Mike Hammil and Greg V. made it in this morning for the last AMS/IMG Denali trip of the year this morning.