Thursday, May 5, 2011

4/25 Denali, Pat Ormond

Pat Ormond

Pat and Nick, the two guides for the AMS 4/25 West Buttress Expedition called in last night for the 14,200' camp. They took a rest day yesterday (Wednesday) and are planning on carrying this morning to 16,200', the top of the fixed lines. Skyler (sp?) I relayed your message about the Spot messenger. If Hal figures it all out leave a comment on where to track them.

They are planning on resting tomorrow and then they will start to look for a window to move up to High Camp at 17,200'. Every one is "chowing down" and feeling good. Pat might give me a call back today, so if any of you who have peeps on this expedition and want me to relay a message to them let me know asap.

It's been cold enough up there that they are travelling later in the day. Pat said they rolled in from 11 fairly late in the day and it was 30 below. As far as I know they are pretty much all by them selves at the 14,200' camp. NPS (National Park Service) hasn't even showed up to camp yet. They will be arriving any day now I suspect.

The plan as of last night was to leave 14K around 11 or 12 today. The group is all refreshed and trained up in all of the technical procedures of ascending and descending the fixed lines on the steep "headwall" as well as clipping and unclipping from all of the running protection the guides will be placing on the 16K ridge.

They will be carrying/caching several days of food, fuel and a few odds and ends. For the most part though, they will be wearing all of their clothes and will have eaten a good portion of their lunch food, so there is not a whole lot of weight to cache.


Here is a photo of climbers getting ready to descend the fixed lines, the climber in the background is preparing to attach his ascender to the top of the fixed lines, 16,200'. Judging by the emptiness of their packs I'd say this was their carry day.


Courtney said...

Am thinking of you Nick!

The Urban Homesteader said...

Thank you so much for the update! The tracker is working great, and I've been able to follow their progress to a T. Friends/family of the group can email me at, and I'll be happy to pass on the link. Do they have to wait for NPS to put protection on the ridge before they can head up?

Message for Hal: Love you! Keep the toes and nose warm and TCB!!!

Thank you, AMS!

Alaska Mountaineering School said...

Thank Schuyler!

It will be fun to see thier progress. The team does not have to wait for the National Park Service to continue up the mountain. The fixed lines ( from 15,500' to 16,200' ) are already in place and the team has plenty of anchor equimpent with them as well. Along the 16K Ridge, they will be placing pickets (snow achors) and using natural protection as they climb to high camp.


Schuyler said...

Sounds great - thanks for the update, Caitlin!

Arlene said...

Dana, I hope this reaches you. I am a bit site challenged...guess I'd better not attempt any exciting expedition like this, since I can't even navigate the AMS site w/o getting lost. Thinking of you a lot. Love you, Auntie Ar

Maria said...

For Dana and Reid....We continue to send you all our positive energies and "warm" thoughts. Blessings and Bon Chance. The Spot is fantastic! Grams sends her love...she is doing fine!!!

Hugs love and Eskimo kisses!
Mom and Dad

Anonymous said...

Best of luck to everyone.
Reid, when the days get tiring--keep reminding yourself that it can't be as long as the approach to Olympus. Keep an eye out for the cairn concealing the can of Dave's Pale Ale.
Dana, wear those 'captains' with pride--it's REAL glasses like those that helped the legendary mountaineers first conquer the high peaks!
All our best,
Rich, Suzie and family