Posts for Expedition Dispatches

Everest Base Camp Trek & Island Peak Climb: Grom & Team Summit Island Peak

Posted by: Casey Grom | April 04, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest BC Trek
Elevation: 20,300'

Hello everybody, this is Casey Grom checking in again from the Mount Everest Base Camp Trek and Island Peak Climb. We are all currently safely back at base camp here on Island Peak after a successful but long, hard day. It was a pretty tough night. We actually had quite a bit of snow overnight, which made the trail difficult but fine and pretty slick so it was hard going for most folks for the first few hours. Luckily the wind died down and we were able to get three of our climbers to the top of Island Peak. The other three- a couple of them climbed, one stayed in camp to be moral support. The other two, I think they realized it was a little too much for them. It was a big day. It took about eight hours for the team to reach the summit after almost going non-stop with just a few breaks. We are all back at camp, everyone’s happy and doing well. We just packed up and we’re going to drop down to Chukung… (transmission lost)

RMI Guide Casey Grom

Walking through the rocks at dawn. Photo: Casey Grom Fixed line to summit of Island Peak. Photo: Casey Grom

RMI Guide Casey Grom checking in after Island Peak climb.

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Everest Base Camp Trek: Tucker & Team Have a Couple of Big Days on Their Trek Out

Posted by: Mark Tucker | April 03, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest BC Trek
Elevation: 11,300'

BIG, BIG days in a row.  What a whirl wind tour this has been. Since leaving Pheriche at 14,000 ft and going up to 17,000-foot Everest Base Camp it has been all business.

The team has linked together so many tough days and been rewarded with so many memories, I sure hope the lack of oxygen to the brain doesn’t effect the retention of them. We were up early to a blue-sky day.  Quick breakfast and off we go.  The word descend is a bit misleading when traveling in the Khumbu region.  The dramatic relief in topography combined with all the weathering and rivers makes for a lot of ups and downs from start to finish of the day. Midway on our trek today, it started to snow pretty heavy.  The team has been fine tuning what basic equipment to have in our packs at all times.  Needless to say most of our clothing went on as we traveled through a winter wonderland.  The downhill becomes a big challenge with wet and slippery condition.  An impressive demonstration by my group of climbers today with no misstep under trying conditions. All tired but happy with one more BIG day tomorrow, which will get us back to the Lukla airstrip.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

Everest BC Trek Team take a break to pose on trek back to Namche. Photo: Mark Tucker Trekking out over the Dudh Kosi River. Photo: Mark Tucker Clouds rolling in brought a snowstorm over the trekking team. Photo: Mark Tucker

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Dhaulagiri: Elias & Team Check in from Their Approach to Dhaulagiri

Posted by: Elias de Andres Martos, Jake Beren, Geoff Schellens, Garrett Stevens | April 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Guide News
Elevation: 12,139'

Hello this the Dhaulagiri team. We are at the end of our fifth day of our approach to base camp at a location called Italian Camp. We are roughly at 3,700 meters. Everything has been pretty good so far. We have had really good weather on the approach. A couple of snow storms at night. The sunshine at this camp is baking us right now.  We are about to have a pretty good meal here. We would like to share also that on the approach, we had a really cool encounter in one of the villages. We shared some of the supplies that we gathered over the last year from supporters who have been pitching in to bring us here. So that was really neat to share these items with a village on our way to Dhaulagiri. Everything is well like I said. We have about two or three more days to get into Base Camp from where we will be checking in once we arrive. So we hope all is well and we will keep you posted. Bye.

RMI Guide Elias de Andres Martos

RMI Guide Elias de Andres Martos calls in from Italian Camp.

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Everest Base Camp Trek: Tucker & Team on their Descent to Namche Bazaar

Posted by: Mark Tucker | April 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest BC Trek
Elevation: 14,000'

Hey Mark Tucker checking in from Pheriche down here in the lowlands of 14,000’. Well the team got up and had a nice breakfast in beautiful, beautiful weather. We said good-bye to the crew at Base Camp. It was really fun sharing the expedition experience with these guys.  We had a really good time and were well taken care of. We were sad to leave Jeff Martin, our Operations Manager, all alone up there, but he’s going to be fine. We had a big day today though. Went through Gorak Shep and Lobuche so it was quite a trek for the team. They all did well and the mountain at the last bit threw at us a pretty good snow squall. And for this group of Floridians, the preparation and our great training over the last couple of weeks here, we survived. It was not that bad but it was a fun experience and boy we’re going to share these stories. Whatever they say, I’ll agree with them. Those numbers change when they get back home but I will verify it. So we’re all doing well. The other RMI team, the climbing team, is here as well. It’s been great to rub shoulders with them and these guys are getting to know them as well. So we are all hanging tough. More downhill and up tomorrow, where we’ll end up in Namche Bazaar. Thank you for following.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

Himalaya Panorama. Photo: Dave Hahn Hiking with Ama Dablam in the background. Photo: Dave Hahn An RMI team descending past prayer flags. Photo: RMI Collection

RMI Guide Mark Tucker calls in from Pheriche.

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Everest Base Camp Trek & Island Peak Climb: Grom & Team Reach Chukung

Posted by: Casey Grom | April 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest BC Trek
Elevation: 15,514'

Hey everybody. This is Casey Grom checking in again with the RMI Everest Base Camp Trek and Island Peak Climb. Just wanted to let everyone know that all is well. We left Pheriche yesterday and hiked for a few hours.  It was up the eastern-most valley in the Khumbu region to a little village called Chukung. Unfortunately, I was not able to get reception where we were staying. No cell service or wifi up there either. We had a great night, great food, and got up this morning to a little dusting of snow on the ground. We had a leisurely breakfast and got everything packed up.  And then the team set off this morning around 10 AM. We hiked for about three hours further up the valley to the the base of Island Peak. Our wonderful support staff hiked ahead of us and had our dining tent and even had a hot lunch ready for us. All of our sleeping tents were set up right as we pulled in. We are a little spoiled to say the least. Anyway, the team’s doing great. We’re just relaxing right now inside the tents and will continue to rest this afternoon. We’ll do some training tomorrow and then we’re hoping tomorrow night we’ll make our summit bid. So that’s all for now, hope everyone back home is doing well and we’ll check in again soon.

RMI Guide Casey Grom

Island Peak from Pheriche. Photo: RMI Collection Hiking through the Imja Khola Valley. Photo: RMI Collection Trek towards Island Peak. Photo: RMI Collection

RMI Guide Casey Grom calls in from Chukung.

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Mt. Everest: Hahn & Team Greeted by Specatular Views on Pheriche Rest Day

Posted by: Dave Hahn, J.J. Justman, Billy Nugent | April 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 13,950'

A great day at 14,000 ft and above.  In the pattern we’ve come to expect, it was all blue sky and sunshine to start the day and then cloudy and even a bit snowy to end the day.  But we made excellent use of the sunny and calm morning to go for a hike about 1,200 ft up on the hills behind Pheriche.  Right off the bat, we enjoyed views of the sixth, fifth and fourth highest mountains in the world.  Everest is now hidden from our view by Nuptse, and that will continue until we are above our final tea house in Lobuche, but Cho Oyu, Makalu and Lhotse were trying their utmost to make us forget our central goal of the trip.  They had to fight it out with closer giants like Ama Dablam, Towoche, and Cholatse.  Giant eagle/vultures cruised overhead as we climbed, hoping we’d leave one or two climbers behind, but everybody kept up just fine and the birds went hungry.  We took a bunch of hero shots at our high point and beat feet back down to our luxurious digs in Pheriche.  In the afternoon, the team strolled next door to receive an excellent lecture on altitude illness given by one of the docs of the Himalayan Rescue Association.  The dining room was not nearly as busy as it had been yesterday and the team enjoyed slightly better internet connectivity through the late afternoon and evening.  And that is good, since we don’t expect much web surfing in Lobuche for the next couple of nights.  We’ll try to get our progress out if possible, but of course -no news from us is good news.

Mark Tucker, our soon-to-be basecamp manager, brought his basecamp trekking team back down to Pheriche as planned today.  Nice to see him and his gang.  We’ll say goodbye to him in the morning as he continues guiding his folks back down to Lukla before sprinting back up to be with us.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Spectacular vistas seen by the 2014 Everest team hiking above Pheriche. Photo: Billy Nugent The Everest team resting at their acclimating high point (15,200')  for the day. Photo: Billy Nugent

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Mt. Everest: Hahn & Team Reach Pheriche

Posted by: Dave Hahn, J.J. Justman, Billy Nugent | April 01, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 14,000'

The RMI Everest climbing team reached Pheriche today.  Our last evening and morning down in the trees of Deboche went well enough and everybody was feeling strong and in good spirits this morning.  We set out in bright sunshine with a big blue sky at 8:30 AM.  Yesterday, in traveling the same trail to reach Pangboche we ended up in a huge yak traffic jam where a steel truss bridge had recently collapsed into the river and a detour needed to be negotiated.  Today, the yaks were elsewhere and the trail was blissfully quiet.  We made pretty good time, cruising along above the North bank of the Imja Khosi while steadily gaining altitude.  The trees were pretty much played out a little above Pangboche at perhaps 13,500 ft and the character of the terrain changed.  We took several short breaks alongside the trail and arrived by noon at Pheriche at 14,000 ft.  Our tea house for the night (and tomorrow night as well) is quite popular, “modern” and spacious… a bit of a contrast from the more low key and traditional place we stayed in at Deboche.  There are at least 75 other people sharing the dining hall and lodge, some are climbers and guides that we know from other mountains, some are trekkers, many are climbing sherpas.  We were all happy to be sitting around a warm stove, indoors, as the clouds rolled in and it got nasty and cold in the late afternoon.  It is far too many people for the capacity of the WiFi system, but we are plenty happy to be connected again at any speed.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Top of Pheriche Pass. Photo: RMI Collection Rows of Mani Stones between Deboche and Pheriche. Photo: RMI Collection Teahouse in Pheriche. Photo: RMI Collection

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Everest Base Camp Trek: Tucker & Team Check in from Base Camp

Posted by: Mark Tucker | April 01, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest BC Trek
Elevation: 17,575'

Hey Mark Tucker at Everest Base Camp, checking in.  Woke up to clear blue, not a cloud in the sky. Here in the early evening, we’ve got a little light snow- not unusual. The team is doing well. We had a very productive day: some showers, lots of writing, reading… I don’t know about arithmetic, lots of photos, and a venture into the Icefall. We are sharing our camp with Jeff Martin, the RMI Operations Manager. It’s a pleasure he is setting everything up for the team that’s coming in. Actually the bags that went straight from Kathmandu to Base Camp just arrived for the climbing team. I’m sure they are posting on the website. But their gear is all here and that is always a nice thing. A little bit chilly, as you can imagine. My hands are freezing on this phone but we are going to duck into the dining tent where we will have another three to five course meal and have a little heater in there. Play a little bit of cards and relax and we are already gearing up for tomorrow. Our descent will begin back back towards Lukla. So we are keeping that fresh in our mind. Everybody is doing well and thanks for following. We’ll talk later.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

RMI's Base Camp on Everest. Photo: Linden Mallory

RMI Guide Mark Tucker checks in from Everest Base Camp.

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Mt. Rainier: Intro to Ski Mountaineering is Underway

Posted by: Solveig Waterfall, Bryan Hendrick | March 31, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 6200'

Hello from 6200’!

We spent the day in Ashford yesterday organizing gear and getting our ski kits dialed in.

The road to Paradise was delayed in opening due to the 13” of new snow overnight!

We kept ourselves busy this morning tour planning and exercising our map and compass skills, while enjoying coffee and patiently waiting for the plows to finish their job.
The late arrival was worth it, and we made good time to our campsite here in the Upper slopes of the Paradise Valley.  After building a bomber camp we went out for a cocktail hour ski back down the valley a few hundred feet.

We are all cozy here in camp and looking forward to clear skies and more training tomorrow!


RMI Guides Solveig Waterfall, Bryan Hendrick, and the team!

Route Planning. Photo: Bryan Hendrick Ski Camp. Photo: Bryan Hendrick Paradise Valley. Photo: Bryan Hendrick The Dining tent. Photo: Bryan Hendrick

Mt. Everest: Dave Hahn and Team visit Lama Geyshe

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Billy Nugent, J.J. Justman | March 31, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 12,325'

This is Dave Hahn Calling in from the Mt. Everest Climb. We are spending our second night here Deboche tonight. We weren’t able to send out email from here, that’s why you haven’t heard from us, but all is well. Today was our rest day here.  What did was we hiked over to Tengboche and got our blessing from Lama Geshi, a blessing for attempting the mountain.  That was a great time; we went out lunch in Tengboche afterward and came back here in the afternoon. Everybody is going really well.

Tomorrow it is our intention is to move up to Pheriche. We hope we will have email communication then.

Take care for now, Bye.

RMI Guides Dave Hahn, JJ Justman, Billy Nugent & Team

Lama Geyshe. RMI Photo Collection Lama Geyshe writes a prayer. RMI Photo Collection

Dave Hahn Checking in from Debouche

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Recent Images From Expedition Dispatches

  • The Mt. Rainier winter seminar's high point today. Photo: Robby Young
  • Winter seminar training with avalanche transceivers. Photo: Brent Okita
  • The winter seminar traversing the Cowlitz Glacier. Photo: Brent Okita
  • B3 Helicopter Leaving Everest BC Helipad. Photo: Dave Hahn
  • Mt. Everest from the Kalapathar summit. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Taking a break on our way up the Muir Snowfield. Photo: Brent Okita
  • Mt. Rainier seminar ascending to Camp Muir. Photo: Brent Okita
  • Beautiful vast views on Mt. Rainier seminar. Photo: Brent Okita
  • View from above Everest Basecamp. Photo: Jake Norton
  • Everest Base Camp and the Lower Khumbu Icefall.  Photo: RMI Collection
  • Prayer flags below Pumori. Photo: Jeff Martin
  • View from Pumori C1. Photo: Dave Hahn
  • Dave Hahn descending the Khumbu Icefall. Photo: Dave Hahn
  • Everest BC - Puja ceremony. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Raising the mast at a puja ceremony. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Puja lamas and drum. Photo: RMI Collection
  • RMI's Everest Base Camp at night. Photo: RMI Collection
  • The sun setting on the peaks surrounding Everest Base Camp.  Photo: RMI Collection
  • Kathmandu, Nepal.  Photo: Linden Mallory
  • Touring the Khumbu close to Everest BC. Photo: RMI Collection
  • The moon over Everest's West Shoulder and Base Camp. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Surrounding views from Everest BC. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Casey Grom's team back in Namche. Photo: Casey Grom
  • RMI Everest Basecamp Communications Tent. Photo: Dave Hahn
  • RMI tents with views of the Khumbu Icefall. Photo: Seth Waterfall
  • Island Peak's Headwall. Photo: Casey Grom
  • Hiking above the Tengboche Monastery. Photo: Linden Mallory
  • Team shopping in Namche at the end of the trek. Photo: Mark Tucker
  • Team posing in front of a blossoming tree near Namche. Photo: Mark Tucker
  • Namaste. Photo: Mark Tucker
  • Nuptse from Lobuche. Photo: Dave Hahn
  • Walking through the rocks at dawn. Photo: Casey Grom
  • Fixed line to summit of Island Peak. Photo: Casey Grom
  • Everest BC Trek Team take a break to pose on trek back to Namche. Photo: Mark Tucker
  • Trekking out over the Dudh Kosi River. Photo: Mark Tucker
  • Clouds rolling in brought a snowstorm over the trekking team. Photo: Mark Tucker