Mt. McKinley: Jones & Team - The Stage is Set…

Posted by: Tyler Jones, Garrett Stevens, Bryan Hendrick | June 07, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 11,200'

June 7, 2014 - 6:49 pm PT

...and the players are ready! Hello from our cloudy camp at 11,000. The team had a productive morning rising to a cold clear day! We started the day with a classic mountain breakfast of instant grits with a side of pop tarts. We know it’s not likely many would approve but for us it hit the spot and was the fuel we needed on a breezy, cold morning lugging our cache loads all the way to our next camp at 14,200 ft.

This was our first day of more technical climbing - we’ve been referring to the mountain behind us as the long heavy approach. The rope teams climbed with crampons and ice axes up Motorcycle Hill around to the famous Squirrel Hill. Lore has it that one early expedition had a furry stowaway on board that jumped from a member’s pack at a break on this stretch of mountain, resulting in the long-standing name “Squirrel Hill.”

After this section we made great time up to and around Windy Corner, which gave us a taste of some icy breezes as we crested over into the sun. The remaining stretch of glacier went quickly, and we were dropping our kit into yet another snow hole before noon. The group climbed flawlessly as we were back to our tents at 11,200’ before we knew it. Now we’re resting and preparing for tomorrow’s move up to our fourth camp,the highest so far. Don’t touch that dial, we’ll be back with an update tomorrow!

RMI Guides Garrett, Tyler, Bryan, and the team

Pulling sleds on Motorcycle Hill, Mt. McKinley. Photo: RMI Collection

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Comments

Great job Jake! You are well prepared for what lies ahead!  Wish we knew what color your coat is, it’s hard to pick you out in the photos!  Love Mom

Posted by: Diane on 6/8/2014 at 3:39 pm

Congratulations Paul !!

You finally get to see the view from the 14,000 ft. camp.  Pretty amazing, isn’t it.  Sounds like the weather has been preety decent for you guys.  I hope it stays that way so you don’t get stuck hunkering down at 14k or 17k. 

-Larry Seaton

Posted by: Larry Seaton on 6/8/2014 at 12:13 pm

Good climbing, good guiding and good writing. Keep up the good work, from your number one fan. Love Dad.

Posted by: Nick Boekenoogen on 6/8/2014 at 10:17 am

Hi Paul! Sitting out on the deck with Max & Meeka enjoying our beautiful Sunday AM weather.  (65 degrees, light breeze and not a cloud in the sky.) I hope you and your team enjoy your day too ! Btw- someone told me that pop tarts are the breakfast of champions! Stay safe.
Love Ronda, Al, Meeka & Max

Posted by: Ronda Kinneberg on 6/8/2014 at 8:58 am

Freeze or Fry!

Posted by: Matt on 6/8/2014 at 7:57 am

Jen - Sounds like a tough, but rewarding day. Glad to hear the carry up to 14,200’ went well. Can’t wait to read about today’s adventure!

Posted by: Nicole on 6/8/2014 at 6:19 am

Great writing, guys—-makes me feel like I’m there; glad to hear you’re all climbing strong. Paul: as ur gynecologist, I suggest motrin for muscles cramps…Ben

Posted by: ben Alvarez on 6/8/2014 at 1:49 am

Good luck Jen and team.  Prayers for safe climbing and good weather.

Posted by: Terry on 6/7/2014 at 9:51 pm

Missing you, Will! Glad to hear you are having good weather. Everything sounds like it’s going well. So proud of you, hope you’re having fun, and thinking of me on squirrel Hill. ;) :*

Posted by: Christine on 6/7/2014 at 7:47 pm

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