Thursday, June 19, 2008

Messages from Melis & Baby Ravens, Updated

Melis called in from 14 camp Wednesday evening, they were on a rest day - sounding very chipper! They are moving up to High camp today, Thursday, wx permitting. They are planning on taking advantage of Mike and Leighan's supply of tents etc. up there. Melis figured they would be saving 40+ lbs by making the camp swap. This certainly has been the year of the tent swap. I have only been able top make it work once or twice myself, I used to call it the illusive, often talked about but rarely performed tent swap.

She left us a long phone message on behalf of her group. Here goes:
  • From Nevin: "Missing you guys lots. Tom look after the girls and Tilly & Tomcat. Love, Dad"
  • "Happy Birthday John, this one's for you, love you Bro. In my thoughts - Randi, JP, Joe, Elle, Mae Mae and Mom & Dad" - Rob
  • "To Marion, Thank you for your support & sharing my dream, you make my climb easier. I love you." - John
  • "Hi loved ones, Mountain so beautiful, doing fine, missing you, kisses from me." - Line
That was all I could understand on the message - please pardon if the names are wrong! (Was it John or Don?) I didn't hear messages from Tim & Chip - but I bet they say hello! I may not have received the whole message.

Still no calls from Phil - but they were on the same schedule as Mike & Leighan, so we're hoping they'll call in today. He's done a "zillion" expeditions on Denali, I guess you can't teach an old dog about a new blog.

Mike called me last night from back in 17 camp. They had a good trip back to camp last night and still had plenty of sunshine in camp, which is pretty awesome to be able to stay warm at 17,200 feet via the sun after a long hard day.

Phil's crew summitted as well yesterday. Mike saw them coming back down the "Audubon" from Denali pass when I was talking with him on the phone last night.

It's cloudy in Talkeetna, no planes flying yet. But the baby ravens are learning to fly! It is quiet in town except for the persistent cries of the hungry raven fledglings chasing their parents around, demanding food. The ravens closer to the Alaska Range will start raiding climbers caches on the glaciers. The parents teach the obnoxious, huge babies how to dig in the snow, rip into bags and even pull zippers open. They are incredibly intelligent, clever birds with over 36 different vocalizations. If you've ever heard fledgling ravens, you know how desperate the bedraggled parents are to feed them and shut them up! They squawk and scream constantly for food. Parents of teenagers will understand... Park Service tells climbers to dig their caches at least a meter deep, and deeper on the lower glacier area because of the melting that happens as the days go by. If you don't dig deeply enough, climbers may return to find their food and gear scattered all over the place where their cache used to be concealed by snow.

All for now ~ Julia and rob


Donna said...

To Rob (with Melis' group): Happy birthday to you also! Hope you have been getting our messages as our thoughts and love keep helping you up the mountain! Your loving Tifosi...Sandy and Donna

doug said...

To Paul (Lappie):

Looks like things are going well. Hope you are having a good time. The photos and descriptions are phenomenal! Keep it up. Looking forward to biking with you when you return.


Donna said...

Rob (Stein)
You are the first to are going to be a cousin again! Tracey is pregnant! Thought that news would be great shared at the top of the world! Love,
Sandy and Donna

Anonymous said...

To Tim and Chip (with Melis), I am envious. Any penitentes? Sounds like you are cruising up the hill! Hope things are going well and that the summit is "in sight." Have a safe trip up and a safer trip down - remember, it is mandatory. Thinking of you, Britt.