Entries From McKinley Custom 6-10-14

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Back in Talkeetna

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 29, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 348'

June 29, 2014 - 8:23 am PT

We finally got off Mt. McKinley as the snow stopped and the clouds parted. We wrapped up a great adventure with a great meal that did not have to be rehydrated.
I want to thank Bruce and Josh for being great partners in our adventure. Bruce is one of my heroes. Even though he is blind, he climbs with a natural ability and has a great mountain sense. He truly understands what mountaineering is all about. I look forward to our future adventures together!

RMI Guide MIke Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

River near Talkeetna, Alaska. Photo: Eric Frank
3

I agree with all. Bruce and Josh are Mountaineers and heros in my book.  Glad to know you are safe and now have memories of Denali that will keep with… read more

Posted by: James on 6/30/2014 at 5:52 am

I’ve been watching you—but also NOAH’s weather reports—and I’m really, glad you made the decision that you did, even with all of that forward momentum that I KNOW you had. … read more

Posted by: Susan on 6/29/2014 at 6:22 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team’s Adventure Continues

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 27, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 7,300'

June 26, 2014 - 9:40 pm PT

We set out Tuesday morning to move up to 17k when circumstances both unfortunate and out of our control forced us back down to 14k camp. We made the wise mountaineering decision to forgo the summit for another time and begin the arduous trek back to Denali’s Basecamp.  We made it back to Basecamp around ten yesterday morning and were disheartened to hear that although clear here, the planes were not flying because of weather between here and Talkeetna. We set up camp and made the best of being stuck in the Alaska range.

Although we thought our adventure was winding down, we woke up last night to over a foot and a half of snow threatening our tent. We shoveled around camp for over two hours helping other teams that had tents collapse. When the snow finally slowed down this morning, we had collected well over three feet!  Although it was fun to see that much snow, it also meant we needed to put on our snowshoes to stomp down an entire runway filled with nearly waste deep, wet snow. The weather never really cleared today, but we are hoping that we will not receive as much snow tonight and the weather will be clear for flight activity to resume tomorrow.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

Snowstormed tents on Mt. McKinley. Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

3

Mike and Josh,
Thank both for leading Bruce on such a great trip!

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Posted by: Mom and Dad on 6/29/2014 at 5:35 pm

I’m so sorry, you guys—but I know you made the correct decision based on what you were facing—I was watching the local weather for Denali via the NOAA feeds and… read more

Posted by: Susan Matthews on 6/27/2014 at 9:26 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen and Team Resting at 14,200’

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 23, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 23, 2014 - 7:31 pm PT

We decided that today would be a great day to do some more acclimatization at 14,000’ on Mt. McKinley. Instead of carrying our gear higher we decided to rest today and then retrieve our gear on our move to 17,000’ tomorrow. The team is feeling strong and we are feeling very positive about a good summit bid once we get into position at seventeen. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather for us for a few days!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

Camped at 14,200 ft on Mt. McKinley, Alaska.  Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

5

I see from the other teams that the weather is really bad.  I hope you all are dug-in and holding out safe and warm.

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Posted by: James on 6/26/2014 at 6:47 pm

Hoping the weather will hold and you guys make it.Weather in Virginia is lovely.

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Posted by: Ron Holt on 6/24/2014 at 7:03 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen and Team Take a Rest at 14,000’

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 23, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

After a big day yesterday, we had a rest day here at 14,000’ on Mt. McKinley. We practiced some more fixed rope techniques and got ourselves organized. Our plan is to move our cache up to 17,000’ camp tomorrow. This will allow us to carry much lighter on our move day and to further our acclimatization before we make our big move up to 17,000’ Camp.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and “The Ocho”

Camp life at 14,000 ft on Mt. McKinley.  Photo: Brent Okita

On The Map


Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Mission Accomplished

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 22, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 22, 2014 - 12:41 am PT

We woke up early to cold temperatures. The skies were clear and the winds were calm. After a good breakfast we set out to carry gear up higher. Not too long after we started climbing, the weather began to turn. Snow began to blow at us as we approached the fixed lines that go up to 16,200’. The weather was never too terrible, but it was never good. We decided to cache our gear at the top of the fixed lines and head back to camp. Rest day/acclimatization day tomorrow.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

An RMI Team ascending Mt. McKinley's fixed lines. Photo: Brent Okita

On The Map

1

Looking good, following the journey from here in Seattle with interest!  Stay strong & keep focussed!!  (we know you will)

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Posted by: Susan on 6/22/2014 at 3:13 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Rest Day at 14K Camp

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 21, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 20, 1014 - 10:00 pm PT

We woke up this morning when the sun hit the tent. It was a cold morning here on Denali so it took us awhile to get out and about. We were on a rest/acclimatization day so we ate, drank, and took care of some chores to get us ready for our cache day up high tomorrow. Our plan is to carry some gear to somewhere between here and 17,000’ camp. The actual cache spot will depend on how well we are feeling and what the weather gives us.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen Team “The Ocho”

Post tent at Denali's 14,200' Camp with the fixed lines in the background. Photo: Lindsay Mann

On The Map

2

Was a great day in the Cascades.  Too bad you din’t have our weather.  View of 3 volcanoes from the top of Bandera

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Posted by: Ron on 6/21/2014 at 4:28 pm

Anchorage 30mph winds and poring rain.  But better than wenatchee.  Miss you, stay warm

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Posted by: Gwyn on 6/21/2014 at 3:08 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Move Into 14K Camp

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 20, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 20, 2014 - 8:29 pm PT

We woke up to snowing and blowing again this morning. We pushed our wake up/ departure time back a couple of hours and the weather cleared up nicely for us. Although leaving early is a bit colder, it keeps us off the glacier when it heats up and it gets us into camp early. We arrived at 14,200’ camp around 11:45 this morning and got the pick of the litter for already dug out camps. Since many of the other teams that were stacked up because of the weather headed up to 17k today, camps with big snow walls were in abundance. With a little bit of prep we got a great camp set up. We just finished some tortellini with salmon…roughing it. Thanks RMI, the food has been great on this trip!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

Motorcycle Hill on Mt. McKinley. Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

4

Great progress!!  Hope the weather continues to give you windows of opportunity.

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Posted by: Ron on 6/21/2014 at 5:42 am

Getting close.  Good luck guys!

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Posted by: Brigitte on 6/21/2014 at 5:15 am


Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Carry to 14K Camp

Posted by: Mike Haugen, Josh Gautreau | June 18, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 11,200'

June 18, 2014 - 8:20 pm PT

We woke up around three to clear skies and no wind. We couldn’t resist this opening to cache gear up higher. We were traveling so well this morning that we decided to carry all the way up to McKinley’s 14,000’ camp. It was such a nice day up there that we spent around an hour and a half catching up with the Tyler Jones’ and Jake Beren’s teams. It looks like there should be good weather for a couple of days?? Cross your fingers for all of us!

The plan for tomorrow is to move our camp up to 14,000’. We are hoping for more of the same weather we had today.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Team “The Ocho”

An RMI team ascending from Denali's 11,000' Camp. Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

4

Love the pictures. Beautiful. Bruce will soon be above Rainier elevation.

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Posted by: Kris McCann on 6/19/2014 at 2:41 pm

Fingers crossed!  Mike, your lawn is looking gorgeous!

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Posted by: Brigitte on 6/19/2014 at 1:33 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen and Team Working Hard at 11,000’ Camp

Posted by: Josh Gautreau, Mike Haugen | June 17, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 11,200'

June 17, 2014 - 7:14 pm PT

Once again the weather turned nasty overnight. We woke up to howling winds, snow, and low visibility. We waited until later in the morning and the weather began to get better.  We decided to do our back carry since the weather was just good enough to travel. We made great time getting back down to our cache at 10,000’. We dug up our cache and were reunited with much of the food and gear that we will not be using until higher up on the mountain. As we were headed back up to camp, the skies cleared somewhat and the weather was downright pleasant the rest of the day.
Our plan for tomorrow is to cache much of the same food and gear up towards 14,000’. This will take some of the weight off from our move day and help us acclimatize to higher altitudes.
Climb high and sleep low.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and “The Ocho”

Tucked in at 11,000 ft on Mt. McKinley.  Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

8

Mike and Bruce,
We are eagerly awaiting each installment of the story! Happy climbing!
Kristina Stamatis

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Posted by: Kristina on 6/18/2014 at 2:01 pm

Go Bruce! Wishing you well and remember to bring back some McKinley snow for me in a zip lock bag. =)

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Posted by: Donald Chen on 6/18/2014 at 1:38 pm


Mt. McKinley: Haugen and Team Move to 11,000’ Camp

Posted by: Josh Gautreau, Mike Haugen | June 16, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 11,200'

June 16, 2014 - 8:03 pm PT

We arrived at our 11,000’ camp in the late afternoon today. Our plan was to leave early this morning to head up here, but the weather was pretty terrible. White out conditions and strong winds kept us in the tent all morning. Just after noon, the weather started to get a bit better and we got word that the conditions were better higher up. We heard a couple of planes that take people on scenic tours overhead, so our suspicions of clear skies above were confirmed. We packed up our camp in record time and headed uphill. The conditions grew steadily better the higher we went and the traveling was actually pleasant.
We arrived in camp way earlier than we predicted as our team has been very steady and strong as we travel up the mountain. We built a storm fortified camp and are just finishing up a well earned meal.
Our plan for tomorrow is to do a back carry. This means that we will go back down to dig up our 10,000’ cache and bring those supplies up to our new camp. We will hopefully have the weather to complete this task early so that we can rest up for our days at higher altitudes.

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and RMI Team “The Ocho”

An RMI Team moving to 11,000ft Camp on Mt. McKinley. Photo: Lindsay Mann

On The Map

7

Wow you guys are rocking that mountain!  I’m looking for your tracks on Google Earth…. ok not really.  But WOW!

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Posted by: James on 6/17/2014 at 7:06 pm

Encouragement to Bruce and Michael. Let me know if I have the right team.

Ron Holt

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Posted by: Ron Holt on 6/17/2014 at 9:52 am


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