Monday, May 7, 2012

Advanced Mountaineering Course

A couple climbers on a route in the Ramparts.
Winslow Passey called in a bit ago from the Rampart glacier.  The Advanced Mountaineering course has been having a great time and they are learning a ton.  They are planning on doing a traverse from one area of the Alaska Range to another area of the range.  Yesterday they went on a scouting mission to check the descent from the Rampart glacier out onto the main flow of the Kahiltna glacier.  They will have to cross the Kahiltna glacier and travel up (North) for a few miles to get onto the Pika glacier. 

Traverses like this are heavily dependent on weather and conditions.  Winslow like the conditions that she saw yesterday when they scouted.  They were hoping to start the traverse today, but the weather is funky, so they are going to wait until tomorrow.  When I talked to her earlier is was a whiteout.  White out navigation is very tricky.  They will need to have good weather to do this traverse.  Once the traverse is under way it will take about 3 days to make it over to the Pika where they will get picked up when the course is finished.

If they are unable to traverse it is no big deal, since they are already in an ideal local for a mountaineering course.  They got about 8" of fresh snow last night and it was still falling.

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