Friday, May 27, 2011

Running Pro

(Link to last night's news article.) The accidents on and around Denali is traumatic and unusual and sad. It is an alarm to the seriousness of the environment we travel.

The route ascending Denali Pass is different from year to year. Since last year one of the cracks in the middle of the face has grown. To avoid it, the route goes more direct after the rocks. This requires a longer traverse to reach the Pass. Traverses require more protection. You could have one, two, then three members of a rope team fall before the force comes on to one picket. The rope needs to be clipped to 2 or 3 pickets. With a 200' rope, you need 12-14 extra pickets that can be wanded and left in place for the return. Before descending Denali Pass, group up and take a break. Pass around a thermos of hot tea, check your crampons, and get everyone focused on climbing safely. I also pray for strength which can't hurt.

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