Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Glorious Morning

We're wrapping up 2010 in style! A blue moon for New Year's Eve brings night time skiing and bonfires. We have a stretch of clear weather to enjoy, with moderate temps (it's about 8 degrees above right now).
Check out this sunrise from just 10 minutes ago!













We'll be closed for the 4-day weekend, and back in the office on Monday.

Here is the availability update:
2010 AMS Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 2 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL (waitlist)
May 31-June 20: FULL (waitlist)
June 7-June 27: FULL (waitlist)
June 14-July 4: FULL (waitlist)
June 21-July 11: FULL (waitlist)

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 6 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 11 spaces available

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: 9 spaces available
March 27-29: 11 spaces available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 5 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 6 days, 2010 Availability
April 16-21: 8 spaces
May 7-12: 9 spaces
June 4-9: 9 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 12 days, 2010 Availability
April 18-29: 7 spaces
May 14-25: 8 spaces
June 11-22: 8 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Things change quickly! Applications show up every day. If you are uncertain of your schedule but you are interested in participating, stay in touch with us: info@climbalaska.org or 907-733-1016. Leave us a message if we don't answer, we'll be back in the office on Monday.

Have a great weekend! I'll be back in 2010!
~Julia

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Merry Christmas

We had a 4 pm Christmas Day dinner with 20 other Talkeetna friends. Everyone brought something and the main course was chili made with Anya Zolotusky's famous organic beef. We'll be eating it for a few more days.

Best wishes for the New Year
We hope everyone is holding up!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Sending you all warm wishes!
May the lengthening days be Merry & Bright!

Winter Solstice is behind us, hooray! It's time to curl up with a cup of hot cocoa...

2010 AMS Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 3 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL (waitlist)
May 31-June 20: FULL (waitlist)
June 7-June 27: FULL (waitlist)
June 14-July 4: FULL (waitlist)
June 21-July 11: FULL (waitlist)

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 6 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 11 spaces available

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: 9 spaces available
March 27-29: 11 spaces available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 5 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 6 days, 2010 Availability
April 16-21: 8 spaces
May 7-12: 9 spaces
June 4-9: 9 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 12 days, 2010 Availability
April 18-29: 7 spaces
May 14-25: 8 spaces
June 11-22: 8 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Things change quickly! If you are uncertain of your schedule but you are interested in participating, stay in touch with us: info@climbalaska.org or 907-733-1016. Leave us a message if we don't answer, we'll be back in the office on Monday.

Have a great weekend!
~Julia

Friday, December 18, 2009

Denali 2010 Update

Just a few small changes to add this week:

2010 AMS Availability Report:


Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 3 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL (waitlist)
May 31-June 20: FULL (waitlist)
June 7-June 27: FULL (wiatlist)
June 14-July 4: FULL (waitlist)
June 21-July 11: FULL (waitlist)

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

We have only a few spots available for custom West Buttress Denali Expeditions during the April 26- July 4, 2010 date range, if you are interesting in a custom climb contact us soon.

The AMS office will be open next week Monday -Wednesday (normal winter hours) and Thursday (1/2 day).

Enjoy your holidays,
Caitlin


Winter Office Hours: M- F, 10 am - 6 pm or later sometimes...
Summer Office Hours: 7 days a week, 8 am- 10 pm or more most days...

Monday, December 14, 2009

2010 Denali Availability Update & Waitlist Info

We are getting ready for some holiday cheer, with our leggy tree!

For those who received it, I'm glad you enjoyed the Holiday message, Happy Holidays everyone!!!

Have some serious fun this month.






2010 AMS Availability Report:


Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 3 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL (waitlist)
May 31-June 20: FULL
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: FULL (waitlist)
June 21-July 11: FULL (waitlist)

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

What is the Waitlist?

If the expedition date you want is filled, and you are qualified to join an AMS expedition, you may consider joining the waitlist to be contacted upon the event of a cancellation from that expedition date.

In the spirit of trying to be as fair as possible, we are strictly first-come-first-serve here at AMS, and that goes for the waitlists as well.

Who signs on to the waitlist?

Some are just locked into one expedition date. Currently most people on the waitlists are currently signed up for their 2nd choice AMS expedition date. In the event that their 1st choice expedition date has an opening, they will be transferred to that space and, well, there is a bit of a waterfall effect with more spaces opening on different expedition dates. So things can happen rapidly. It is certainly worthwhile being 2, 3, 4, or 5th on a waitlist.

Do people really cancel?

We do get cancellations each year, unfortunately, most often as a result of personal or family illness or injury. We do have a straightforward cancellation policy and we encourage all AMS participants to obtain Travel/Trip Cancelation Insurance, which covers you in these cases; one option is Travel Guard. Make sure to check out their Adventure Sports Coverage.

How do I get on a waitlist?

Complete and return to AMS the AMS Application and Denali Questionnaire, we will review your paperwork and contact you to speak with you about your past climbing experiences. If all looks great, we will place your name on the waitlist for the expedition(s) of your choice. If you have questions about the process after that, just let us know.

Have a great week!

Cheers,
Caitlin


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Kodiak Island Rescue Class



Just got back from teaching a 3 day rescue workshop on Kodiak Island for Alaska Avalanche School. Beautiful island and the only place I know of where you can ski and surf the same day.
cheers, Colby Coombs

Availiblity Update

2010 AMS Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 3 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL (waitlist)
May 31-June 20: FULL
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: FULL

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 6 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 12 spaces available

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: 9 spaces available
March 27-29: 11 spaces available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 7 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 6 days, 2010 Availability
April 16-21: 8 spaces
May 7-12: 9 spaces
June 4-9: 9 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 12 days, 2010 Availability
April 18-29: 7 spaces
May 14-25: 8 spaces
June 11-22: 8 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Things change quickly! If you are uncertain of your schedule but you are interested, stay in touch with us: info@climbalaska.org or 907-733-1016. Leave us a message if we don't answer, we've been out shoveling snow quite a bit lately.

Cheers,
Caitlin

Friday, December 4, 2009

It's Bachelor Weekend!

Talkeetna kicks off WinterFest tonight, starting with the Motorized Parade of Lights, the Taste of Talkeetna, and all sorts of other stuff. Peter Mulvey is playing a concert out at Whole Wheat Radio starting at 8pm (you can listen online!). The Su-Valley Hockey team has two home games this weekend!

Saturday is packed with events!!
It starts with the Oly and Lena ski race - which is a hoot!! Teams of an "Oly" and a "Lena" (or at least dressed the part) have to tell an "Oly and Lena" joke then relay around the 5k groomed trail. Good joke tellers get extra points!

The Talkeetna Bachelors Society will greet the passengers arriving on the Northbound train at noon, hoping for single ladies. Those single ladies are invited to participate in the Wilderness Woman Competition, with great prizes for the top 5 finishers - which will be awarded at the world-famous Bachelor Auction & Ball! That begins at 7pm, with the crowd-pleasing band Rick Shaw and the Transporters jamming funky dance tunes from 11 pm until it's time to go eat Breakfast at the Roadhouse! The Roadhouse opens at Midnight on this special night for those hungry revelers. Of course, there will be another band at the Fairview into the wee hours and the merriment will be all over town, with too many activities to list here.
The Bachelor Auction & Ball raises money for charity! If you can't make it, you can learn more & donate to the cause on their website.

Check out these websites: Bachelors, Chamber, Roadhouse, Denali Arts Council, hey, and while you're surfing, check out the AMS website. Thinking about going climbing this spring? Or maybe taking a Mountaineering Course next summer? Check out our programs, our complete 2010 schedule, then send us an email or give us a call if you're interested. Let us know if we should save you a spot, things are filling rather quickly this year. You don't want to miss out!


2010 AMS Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 3 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: FULL
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 3 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 6 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 12 spaces available

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: 9 spaces available
March 27-29: 11 spaces available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 7 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 6 days, 2010 Availability
April 16-21: 8 spaces
May 7-12: 9 spaces
June 4-9: 9 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Alaska Range Mountaineering Courses, 12 days, 2010 Availability
April 18-29: 7 spaces
May 14-25: 8 spaces
June 11-22: 8 spaces
There are sessions in July, August & September.

Things change quickly! If you are uncertain of your schedule but you are interested, stay in touch with us: info@climbalaska.org or 907-733-1016. Leave us a message if we don't answer, we've been out shoveling snow quite a bit lately.

Happy December!
~Julia

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at AMS!

"Pardoning the Chickens"













Lisle, White Chicken & Rosie. Chicken found a friend to keep her warm.

The AMS Office will be closed for the Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend. We'll be back on Monday. Have a great weekend!
~Julia, Caitlin, Colby, Rob

Expedition Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 4 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: FULL
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!

Aconcagua, Normal Route, 2010 Availability:
February 8-26, 2010: 6 spaces
Argentina is calling you!

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 7 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 4 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 3 spaces available!

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: Available
March 27-29: Available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 7 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Send us an email if you have questions about a particular program or availability.
We'll be back in the office on Monday.

Cheers,
~Julia

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tuesday Update

Six inches of new snow in Talkeetna! More beautiful powder and another pretty day. Low sunlight gave us a bit of warmth midday and warm temps made it a joy to be outside. A perfect day for making snow angels. It made it up to 25 F today.

We've filled another expedition! The WFR course will be full soon, also.

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 4 spaces (1 pending)
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: FULL
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 3 spaces available!

Check in with us if you have any questions.
Cheers!
~Julia

Monday, November 23, 2009

Expedition Update

The temp is soaring today! Up to 36 (above zero!) today, with warm and cloudy being the forecast for the week. Maybe we'll get some snow? The Aurora Forecast predicts a "moderate" showing of Northern Lights for Thanksgiving, which is more of a showing than we've had in quite a while. If you look at the forecast here, you'll see that the folks up around the arctic circle get more shows than we do "way down" here at Latitude 62.

Expedition Availability Report:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 4 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: 1 space*
June 7-June 27: FULL
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Aconcagua, Normal Route, 2010 Availability:
February 8-26, 2010: 6 spaces
Argentina is calling you!

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 7 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 4 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Wilderness First Responder Course, 2010
March 6-14: 3 spaces available!

WFR Re-certifications, 2010
March 20-22: Available
March 27-29: Available

Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops, 2010
April 10-11: 7 spaces available
There are also sessions in July and August.

Send us an email if you have questions about a particular program or availability.
We're here this week through Wednesday, and closed for the Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend.

Cheers,
~Julia

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Update - Complete Details

Greetings! Another Expedition Full!

Denali,
West Buttress, 2010
Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: 1 space*
June 7-June 27: 1 space - pending
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Aconcagua, Normal Route, 2010 Availability:
February 8-26, 2010: 6 spaces
Argentina is calling you!

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 7 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 4 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Other 2010 offerings:
Mountaineering Courses - all dates have availability
Wilderness Hikes & Treks - all dates have availability
Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops - all dates have availability
Wilderness First Responder Courses & Re-certifications - all dates have availability, but the 9-day WFR Course is filling quickly!
Click here for the 2010 Schedule and prices.

Many Custom options are still available. Thinking about Ham & Eggs? The Trolls? Give us a call or send us an email. We're in the office from 10 am to 5pm Monday - Friday, this time of year.

We're enjoying the snow here!
Cheers,
~Julia


The Trolls

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Changes to Update

Greetings from dark and chilly Talkeetna! The thermometer has hovered around Zero F all day. Another fantastic sunset!











3:30 p.m.













4:30 p.m.



There were some small changes today - here is the official standing:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 1 space
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: 1 space*
June 7-June 27: 1 space - pending
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Enjoy!
~Julia

Monday, November 16, 2009

Expeditions Filling Up!

Greetings from chilly Talkeetna!
It was 20 below zero here this morning, and the needle is headed back down that way as I prepare to get on my bike and pedal home in the dark - it got dark at 5pm!

Two more expeditions filled up over the weekend, and two more are on the brink...

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: FULL
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: 2 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 1 space - pending
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

We've had several inquires about Mountaineering Courses - we do still have availability on all scheduled courses for 2010.

Here was the view today:


























Enjoy!!
~Julia

Friday, November 13, 2009

Quick Update Before the Weekend

Hello All,
Just wanted to post a quick update for the weekend.

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 1 space - pending
May 10-30: FULL (waitlist)
May 17-June 6: FULL (waitlist)
May 24-June 13: FULL
May 31-June 20: 2 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 1 space - pending
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

We're getting action on Wilderness First Responder Courses, too! If you have a group of people who need to take the WFR or WFR Recertification/Challenge, please contact us soon to insure your spots for March.

Check in with us on Monday for details if your favorite date is full or nearly full.
Have a great weekend!
~Julia

2009 Operation Denali: National Geographic's Best Adventure

Marc Hoffmeister, team leader of Operation Denali, was recently awarded Adventurer of the Year. This expedition had unique challenges with 4 of the 6 team members severely injured from the Iraq war. For example, Jon Kuniholm, who lost his arm to an IED, carried two extra prosthetic arms in case one broke. Matt Nyman, who lost his leg in a helicopter crash, hauled extra prosthetic legs in his sled. These guys prepared by taking an AMS mountaineering course in 2008 and made an inspiring video everyone should watch. Be warned, there are some graphic parts.
video
AMS took the responsibility of this expedition to heart and assigned senior Denali guide, Kirby Senden, plus two assistants, Todd Tumolo and Matt Montavon. Denali is hard for everyone; no one has ever said, "It was easy." And the mountain doesn't make concessions, period. That makes the success of this expedition that much more meaningful. Their story will be covered in National Geographic's Adventure magazine's Dec/Jan print edition and I urge you to vote for it in the Reader's Choice award.

Marc was also honored with the Alaska Governor's Veterans Advocacy Award, awarded to him on Wednesday, Veterans' Day.
Colby Coombs

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Winter Storm Warning






























We finally got some snow!!
More is expected tonight. Here are some pics from the AMS compound.
The Veterans were able to hold their ceremony at the local VFW Post 3836 in spite of the storm. These are hardy people up here. http://ktna.org/2009/11/11/talkeetna-vfw-post-3836-honors-veterans/
http://ktna.org/2009/11/11/heavy-snow-cancels-most-events/
I got to test out my new snow tires.

Here is the update for the West Buttress:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 2 spaces
May 10-30: FULL
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 1 space
May 31-June 20: 2 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 1 space
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

There are three spots with applications pending - spots are going fast!

Ciao,
Julia

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Little Snow & A Little Cold

We have nearly 2" of snow on the ground here in T-town, and the temp was 3 degrees when I came to work this morning. It was a beautiful, sunny day! There is a winter storm warning in effect for tomorrow, cold and lots of snow, especially north of here. Nearly everyone here feels we are overdue for snow.













Here is the update from the AMS Office:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 3 spaces
May 10-30: FULL
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 1 space
May 31-June 20: 2 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 1 space
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

We still have space on Mountaineering Courses, including Denali Prep/Kahiltna Dome Expeditions, as well as Wilderness Treks and Hikes.
Cheers!
~Julia

Friday, November 6, 2009

Clear Day in Talkeetna

Greetings Blog Fans,






















It was clear and dry in Talkeetna today. The Post Office gossip seems to be focused on the lack of snow for this time of year. But excellent ice skating on the frozen ponds! I'm going to wait until the lakes are good-and-frozen before I venture out. It was up to nearly 40 F yesterday and today. I was talking to Dave Johnston who is glad it's not snowing yet, as they are still working on the roof of their sauna. Dave is usually one of the first ones to strap on his skis each year! (Yes, this is the Dave Johnston.) He's been skating on the ponds in his neighborhood, noting that it had been down to -4 a couple of nights and "probably frozen through". I noticed that they've been starting to get the hockey rink iced up for practice, that's more my speed.

It has been a busy week here in the AMS office. Lots of enrollments in progress for the West Buttress! Here is the official standing as of today - there are a few applications pending so this will very likely change first thing on Monday.

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 4 spaces
May 10-30: FULL
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 2 spaces
May 31-June 20: 3 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 2 spaces
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 1 space
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Have a great weekend!
~Julia

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Update

Hello all, here is an availability update...

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: FULL
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 2 spaces
May 31-June 20: 3 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 2 spaces
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 2 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Have a great weekend!
~Julia

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cool & Sunny in Talkeetna

We're enjoying a view of the Range today - it has been a while! Yesterday we had our first snowfall, but it was gone in no time. This morning it was down to 20 degrees, with this lovely view...
That cloud became a triple lenticular with a miles-long tail, fueled by a gnarly wind out of the north!













Here is the update for availability:

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 3 spaces
May 31-June 20: 3 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 2 spaces
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 2 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides,$6900 per person

Enjoy the day!
~Julia

Friday, October 23, 2009

Quick Update

West Buttress Availability has changed...

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 3 spaces
May 31-June 20: 3 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 2 spaces
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides

Have a great weekend!
~Julia

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ray Genet, Gear Sale and Lots of Other News...

Talkeetna News
We're enjoying warmer weather today, it's up to 40 F. It's been like winter in Portland, lately, with overcast skies and cold mornings, down to 20 F some mornings. Somehow the pansies and other hardy flowers are hanging in there and the lawn is still green. Nothing on the ground except leaves, so the biking and hiking is still awesome! People doing construction work got some bonus time to do dirt work before the ground freezes. (Melis & Joey finished their dirt work! Gray water system is in!)

Tonight there will be a Talkeetna Community Education class here in town, called "Chicken University", learn how to raise chickens in Alaska! Steve Brown from Palmer is teaching - he climbed with us last year. He's the University of Alaska Fairbanks extension agent, and knows everything about farming, gardening and so on here in the cold. Very fun to talk to him!

While you are perusing the KTNA Announcements, scroll down and you'll see there will be a Celebration of the Life and Times of Ray Genet, on Sunday October 25 at 3pm here in town. Colby has been helping with the slide show. The locals have been coming up with some amazing stories! Can't believe it's been 30 years...

AMS News
It's time for the Sort-of-Annual Used Gear Sale at AMS!! Saturday, October 24th, from 10 am to 2 pm at the AMS Mountain Shop on F Street in East Talkeetna. Phone number is 354-1233.

It's been BUSY here in the office! We are experiencing an early surge in enrollments, for West Buttress Expeditions especially. We're getting WFR enrollments much earlier than usual, too.

We have some exciting changes - we're adding a FULL West Rib Expedition to the schedule; and we've set up the May 31 West Buttress Expedition as a high guide-to-climber ratio, small group. This is an awesome option! Check with us for more details. We've already got one experienced climber signed up.

Here is the latest for availability:

Aconcagua, Normal Route, 2010 Availability:
February 8-26, 2010: 6 spaces
Argentina is calling you!

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 7 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: FULL
May 24-June 13: 3 spaces
May 31-June 20: 3 spaces*
June 7-June 27: 4 spaces
June 14-July 4: 1 space
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!
All Dates Filling Fast!
*Special small group, 4 climbers, 2 guides

Denali, West Rib, 2010 Availability:
Yes, Full Rib! May 29-June 18: 4 spaces. Contact AMS for details!
Custom Dates Available

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Other 2010 offerings:
Mountaineering Courses - all dates have availability
Wilderness Hikes & Treks - all dates have availability
Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops - all dates have availability
Wilderness First Responder Courses & Re-certifications - all dates have availability

Many Custom options are still available. Give us a call or send us an email. We're in the office from 10 am to 5pm Monday - Friday, this time of year.

Ciao!
~Julia

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Thursday Update

It's been warmer than usual here in Talkeetna, a very nice autumn. It's been a bit damp and foggy the last couple of days. The "snow" word keeps appearing in the forecast, but the snow line is still pretty high.

The office has been pretty busy with enrollments, people calling about their plans for 2010 and some even for 2011. The Mountain House is almost completely booked for 2010! We'll start taking reservations for March 2011 on March 1, 2010. We'll be starting a waiting list for 2010 soon. We still have a few dates open here and there.

We got the latest Jack Wolfskin catalogue in the mail with their several page spread about their visit to Alaska in April 2009. Their photographer, Gaudenz, took beautiful photos and the weather cooperated for them. Fantastic photos from their dog mushing trip with EarthSong Lodge up by Healy and their time on the Ruth Glacier with our guides Brian McCullough and Larry Holmgren. Manfred and his kids obviously had a great time. They gave their gear a thorough workout! There are some fun pictures of Talkeetna, too. I enjoyed Manfred's personal narrative of the adventure.
It's a huge, gorgeous catalog - check it out! www.jack-wolfskin.com Pick your language of choice and enjoy. Thanks Manfred!

Updates for enrollment:

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 7 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: 1 space
May 24-June 13: 6 spaces
May 31-June 20: 5 spaces
June 7-June 27: 4 spaces
June 14-July 4: 5 spaces
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 4 spaces (possible Full West Rib expedition - contact AMS for details)
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Other 2010 offerings:
Mountaineering Courses - all dates have availability
Wilderness Hikes & Treks - all dates have availability
Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue Workshops - all dates have availability
Wilderness First Responder Courses & Re-certifications - all dates have availability

Many Custom options are still available. Give us a call or send us an email. We're in the office from 10 am to 5pm Monday - Friday, this time of year.

Cheers!
~Julia

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Denali Prep Courses

The hot topic lately here is how to prepare for a Denali climb. Of course, this is different for everyone. It depends whether you are starting out as a couch potato or a marathon runner.
If you're beyond couch potato, have been getting out there backpacking, maybe trying a little rock climbing, and want to "kick it up a notch", a Mountaineering Course is a great way to go. If you have your sights set on Denali in particular, a Denali Prep Course is highly recommended. Meanwhile, get out there and start hiking, biking, climbing, bagging some 14-ers and snow camping every chance you get.

Our Denali Prep Mountaineering Course, also called Kahiltna Dome Expedition, is an ideal way to prepare! Some of the advantages to our Denali Prep Course include the fact that you'll be experiencing the Alaska Range firsthand. You fly in to Base Camp and follow the West Buttress route for about a third of the route. What better way to prepare? Along the way, you practice all the skills needed for the entire West Buttress route: glacier travel & crevasse rescue, camp building and fortifying, fixed line ascension, etc, and you'll travel expedition style (moving camp) pulling sleds with gear. The course is set up to teach you to be self-sufficient for an expedition, not just to rely on guides for your future climbs. This course would also be great training for other big, cold, glaciated mountains.
Here is the link to more info: http://www.climbalaska.org/mtc-denali-prep.html

Kahiltna Dome Expedition/Denali Prep Course, 2010 Availability:
June 3-12: 8 spaces
Custom Dates Available

Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: 1 space
May 24-June 13: 6 spaces
May 31-June 20: 5 spaces
June 7-June 27: 4 spaces
June 14-July 4: 5 spaces
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Filling Fast!

Denali, Upper West Rib, 2010 Availability:
May 29-June 18: 4 spaces
June 5-June 25: 4 spaces
Custom Dates Available

We are processing registrations for all of our 2010 programs, so drop us a line if you're curious about enrollment: info@climbalaska.org

Cheers!
~Julia

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Winter is sneaking up on us














It is a beautiful sunny day here in Talkeetna. The mountains look amazing and crisp compared to a great day mid-summer.

I heard from folks 120 mile north of here that the snow is moving down the mountainsides. The folks at Camp Denali maintain their office at Mile 229 of the George Parks Highway, where they have snow on the ground!
http://www.campdenali.com/live/blog/blog
Here is a photo from them:

~ Julia

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

2010 Availability

Here's the rundown at the moment for Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: 1 space
May 24-June 13: 6 spaces
May 31-June 20: 5 spaces
June 7-June 27: 4 spaces
June 14-July 4: 5 spaces
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces

We also have availability on all Mountaineering Courses, including Denali Prep and Advanced Mountaineering Courses for 2010. We are processing enrollments, so drop us a line if you're curious about enrollment. info@climbalaska.org

Cheers!
~Julia

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Another Guide Gets Married!

AMS Guide Seth Hobby and his bride Maren were married in Norway!
Congratulations Seth & Maren!
(I'll see if I can get a photo up...)
~Julia

Sunday, September 20, 2009

6 Day Mountaineering course finishes the AMS season

The last climbers in the Alaska Range flew out on time and all smiles. Good weather persisted throughout the course and they were able to crank through all of the curriculum plus move camp. A nice way to end the season. We'll still be posting periodic entries while we get ready for whats turning into an exciting 2010. Be well out there.
Colby

Friday, September 18, 2009

12-day Mountaineering Course has returned!

Melis, Joey, Dusty and their crew - Tamara, Mark, Garett, John, Stephen, Alex & Michael have returned from the Eldridge Glacier all smiles! They are unpacking, enjoying the autumn leaves and thinking about showers, lunch and dinner, then enjoying some laid-back Talkeetna life.

The 6-day Mountaineering Course is due to fly out tomorrow if the weather holds. (Larry, Matt M, Emily, Casey & Matt B) It's looking pretty good, we'll see how things look in the morning.

Cheers,
~Julia

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wednesday - Sept 16, 2009

Expedition Availability Update

Here's the rundown at the moment for Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 1 space
May 17-June 6: 1 space
May 24-June 13: 6 spaces
May 31-June 20: 5 spaces
June 7-June 27: 5 spaces
June 14-July 4: 5 spaces
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces

If you are curious about availability for any of our programs, feel free to email us: info@climbalaska.org

Cheers!
~Julia

Monday, September 14, 2009

Word from two courses!

The 6-day Mountaineering Course packed today and flew to the Coffee Glacier in the Alaska Range. Pictured left to right: Emily & Casey (newlyweds!), instructors Matt Montavon and Larry Holmgren, & Matt B. What a beautiful day! They enjoyed the sun while packing and practicing fixed line ascension. Tomorrow they will work on the basics of knots, roping up, then placing anchors and going for a glacier walk. The next day they'll focus on ascending out of a crevasse and probably practice some scenarios. Tonight they'll focus on building camp and eating dinner!

Melis called in from the Eldridge Glacier with the 12-day Mountaineering Course to report great weather, a foot of new snow and that they are having a great time! They moved camp today, down glacier and plan to do some climbing tomorrow. The next day they will will move camp again then start on some more advanced skills and rescue scenarios. Hello to everyone from Melis, Joey, Dusty, Mark, Tamara, Garett, John, Stephen, Alex and Michael!
Cheers,
~Julia

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Mountaineering Course Birthday Summit!

Joey and the 12-day Mountaineering Course called in from the summit of an un-named peak along the Eldridge Glacier at 1:45 pm today - they are celebrating Mark's birthday on the summit! They've been debating on a name for it and so far the winning name is "Not Hershey Kiss". They are enjoying sunny weather and they say "we can see every mountain in Alaska!" Everyone says hello!
Cheers,
~Julia

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Back from the Arrigetch


Colby returned from guiding a 9 day back packing trip through the Arrigetch Mountains, Gates of the Arctic National Park, Brooks Range. After a couple rainy days they got blue bird weather for the rest of the trip. Here is a shot of the East and West Maiden.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Course Photos

Here are pictures from today. 12-day Mountaineering Course led by Melis, Joey and Dusty. Participants are: Mark, Tamara, Garett, John, Stephen, Alex & Michael. Here are some shots of them packing, and a group photo. They flew to the Eldridge Glacier in the Alaska Range. Click on photos to see them larger.
Cheers!
~Julia

2010 Expedition Update

Denali West Buttress Expeditions are starting to fill up! We'll have the 2010 Schedule with expedition availability posted on our website next week. http://www.climbalaska.org/schedule.html
We are now booking for all Workshops, Courses and Expeditions for 2010. Wilderness First Responders & WFR Re-certifiers are welcome to sign up to make sure your spot is secure.

Here's the rundown at the moment for Denali, West Buttress, 2010 Availability:
April 27-May 17: 5 spaces
May 3- 23: 5 spaces
May 10-30: 3 spaces
May 17-June 6: 3 spaces
May 24-June 13: 6 spaces
May 31-June 20: 6 spaces
June 6-June 27: 5 spaces
June 14-July 4: 6 spaces
June 21-July 11: 4 spaces

If you are curious about availability for any of our programs, feel free to email us: info@climbalaska.org

Cheers from sunny Talkeetna!
~Julia

Happy Labor Day!

We're gearing up here for our September 12 Day Mountaineering Course! 7 students (Mark, Tamara, Garett, John, Stephen, Alex, Michael) and instructors Melis, Joey & Dusty are enjoying a gear check in the sun on this crisp, 50 degree morning. They are heading out to the Alaska Range this afternoon. We'll try to give you updates here.

As usual, I can't resist posting photos of the beautiful mountains as captured by webcam.
Here's the North Side webcam, and the South Side webcam.
Hope you all are enjoying a well-deserved long weekend!
~Julia

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Rain Has Gone...

Wow, many days of rain, gorgeous colors bursting from the forest, mushrooms everywhere, and now SUN! It's a beautiful day in paradise!
Here are views from the North Side web cam and the TAT webcam here in Talkeetna.
For more photos of this beautiful place, check out the Talkeetna Travel blog: http://talktrav.tumblr.com/

Monday, August 31, 2009

Colby to the Brooks Range

Colby is guiding a backpacking adventure in the Brooks Range for Arctic Wild. Here are some photos from Arrigetch Peaks in Gates of the Arctic National Park. Here is their website - amazing places they go to!
That powdered sugar dusting signals the termination of summer, "termination dust", better be ready for winter!
Enjoy
~Julia

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Rain is clearing for Roland














Deb, Liz & Roland must be enjoying a beautiful morning up on Kesugi Ridge! The clouds are lifting and they should be getting fantastic views of the Alaska Range. It's probably chilly, a good morning for a hot breakfast and a great hike along the ridgeline. They planned on visiting Curry Ridge as well as Kesugi, using Ermine Lake as their base camp. I bet the blueberries are outrageous! They are close to Broad Pass, the low point in the Alaska Range where the highway and railroad traverse the range with ease. Broad Pass is famous as a fantastic blueberry-picking spot!

The above photo is from the North Side Web Cam, it's part of the NPS Air Quality Monitoring program. This is a long way from where Roland, Deb & Liz are, but it gives us an idea of what kind of weather they are having. The view is from the Wonder Lake Ranger Station, looking at the North Face of Denali (Wickersham Wall), with the McKinley Bar (River) in the distant foreground. There is a bit of the Park Road visible, winding by the ranger station. Here is the link to the webcam:
http://www.nature.nps.gov/air/webcams/parks/denacam/denacam.cfm
Here is the view from the TAT webcam here in Talkeetna.

Enjoy,
~Julia

Monday, August 24, 2009

Annual Backpacking Adventure

Deb, Liz and Roland have packed up and hit the road for Roland's annual Alaska visit. He loves backpacking here so much, he's become a fixture in Talkeetna. They are heading to Denali State Park where they will get up on Kesugi Ridge and enjoy the amazing flora and fauna of that area. They'll be in alpine tundra and get to pick blueberries! It's possible to see wildlife there, such as caribou, wolves, marmot, fox and bear. They plan to be back on Friday, I don't know if we'll have any reports from them during the week.
The weather has been alternating between really nice and really rainy; presently it's mostly cloudy with isolated showers. The sun has been peeking through, so we're hoping they'll get some good views on their hikes.
Have fun Roland!
Cheers,
~Julia

(P.S. You can click on the photo for a larger version.)

Good weather held on...

Friday was another beautiful day in Talkeetna and across the region. The 12-day Mountaineering Course flew out of the Alaska Range on schedule. They had quite a fantastic experience, with two feet of snow during the course, and Glacier Olympics for their last day! I hope to have some photos to post here for you.
Cheers!
~Julia

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Awesome Day in AK!

This is an OUTSTANDING day in the Alaska Range! "Bluebird", "Splitter", whatever you wish to call it - the sky is so incredibly blue and the mountains are striking! If it manages to stay like this, or even half-decent, then Larry, Dusty, Quinton, Mi, Rick & Marty on the 12-day Mountianeering Course will be flying out of the mountains tomorrow morning.
I'm not making any promises, but it is looking good for an on-schedule return.
Here's the link to the webcam: http://www.talkeetnaair.com/webcam
Enjoy!
~Julia

Monday, August 17, 2009

Good times!

Larry checked in with a report from the 12-day Mountaineering Course that has been enjoying the Eldridge Glacier as their home the last week. Hello to all, from Quinton, Mi, Rick & Marty, and of course from Larry & Dusty!
Today they hiked/climbed and did some rock climbing up to Exit Pass and got some great views, looking over to the Buckskin Glacier and beyond. They have moved camp once and plan to move again in a day or two. They've had lots of snow and rain. Today they it cleared off and they enjoyed the sun!
The weather forecast is non-committal, we'll see what happens when it is time for them to fly out. Tonight they'll enjoy some cold temps and stars!
Cheers,
~Julia

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Snowing on the Eldridge!

Larry & Dusty called around 1pm today with a report from the 12-day Mountaineering Course - Mi, Marty, Rick & Quinton are in good spirits and doing great! They got 6 inches of snow during the night and more is falling today.
They were scheduled to do crevasse rescue practice yesterday. Larry said they "did it all" and climbed a peak! Today they'll be doing lots of shoveling and doing more classes.
This is probably what it looks like out there today for them:It's 50 degrees and raining here in beautiful downtown Talkeetna.
Cheers!
Julia

Monday, August 10, 2009

Photos from the Last Mountaineering Course


This is a view of the peak they climbed, most likely a first ascent.

Descending the peak ascent.
A view up at the Moose's Tooth massif.
Here are some photos Todd Tumulo took while on the last AMS mountaineering course.