Entries By brent okita

Mt. Rainier: June 20th SUMMIT!

Posted by: Brent Okita, Solveig Waterfall, Mike Soucy | June 20, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The Four Day Summit Climb led by RMI Guides Brent Okita and Mike Soucy was 30 minutes from the crater rim at 7:40 am as reported by Camp Muir.  Camp Muir reported calm winds, and clear skies. The team will spend a bit of time on the summit before starting their descent.

The Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons spent a misty afternoon practicing crevasse rescue and ice climbing skills on the Emmons Glacier near Camp Schurman The spent the evening in camp, having dinner, relaxing, and celebrating an exciting, strenuous and very windy climb to 13,200’ yesterday. The team is descending from their camp this morning and will return to Ashford this afternoon around 3:30 pm.

Congratulations to Today’s Teams!

The Emmons - Expedition Skills Seminar Team practicing crevasse rescue. Photo: Solveig Waterfall
2

Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Grounded

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 07, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley

June 7, 2014 - 7:23 pm PT

The past day and a half have been a whirlwind. Awakening early at 14,200’ the skies had cleared spectacularly, a very nice change from the snowy weather we had getting to camp. With new snow on the ground climbing back down to 11,200’ camp was easy.

We picked up our cache and visited with friends and some fellow guides before heading down glacier to Basecamp. Because the glacier was in great shape we could travel during the day without needing to get on to a nighttime schedule to walk when the snow is cold and crevasse bridges stronger and safer.

Six hours later we were at the airstrip on the southeast fork of the Kahiltna Glacier. An hour later the great pilots at K2 had landed and were whisking us back to civilization. It was a rush to get in a shower before the restaurants closed.

But we made it and gorged on some wonderful food and cold beverages.  A visit to the infamous Fairview Inn to celebrate our trip led some to hydrate to excess into the wee hours of the morning, but incredibly all made it to breakfast at 8:00.

And now we’ve split up and are going our own ways. Part of the team are going fishing and enjoying this great state some more, while the rest of us are flying home.

Leah, Nick and I are among those going home, opting out of fishing this time so we can see our loved ones, and take a well deserved rest.

Thanks for following along on our great adventure. See you next year!

RMI Guides Brent Okita, Leah Fisher and Nick Hunt

Photos on the Mt. McKinley summit. Photo: RMI Collection

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts


Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Down from 17,200’

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 06, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 5, 2014 - 11:00 pm PT

We broke camp early today given our usual plan for getting down towards Basecamp and hopefully off the mountain in another day or so, but today not all went to plan. Some equipment malfunctions and mostly general fatigue has us camped again at 14,200’, getting recharged for our walk back to the airstrip and closer to a burger, beer, and you.

The forecast looks good for walking down the Kahiltna so we’re all hopeful.

Hope to see you all soon.

RMI Guides Brent, Leah and Nick

An RMI team's 14K camp on Mt. McKinley. Photo: RMI Collection

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

3

Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Back in Camp

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 05, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 17,200'

June 5, 2014 - 1:44 am PT

We’re all safely back in camp, horizontal and happy at 17,200’ on Mt. McKinley. And to no small degree exhausted.
It was a perfect day: sunny and calm with never more than a 5-10 mph wind. But mostly calm. A lot of other climbers were taking advantage of the good weather too, but traffic was nicely spread out.
Tomorrow is another big day as we descend to 11,200’ camp to retrieve our cache and get on to a night time schedule.
All for now. It’s cold and I too am ready to get horizontal.

Goodnight from RMI Guide Brent Okita

An RMI Team securely protected at 17,200 ft Camp on Mt. McKinley.  Photo: Linden Mallory

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

6

Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Summit!

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 04, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 20,320'

June 4, 2014 - 7:43 pm PT

Hi, this is Brent from the RMI Okita McKinley Expedition. I am super psyched to report that we just summitted Denali about an hour ago, about 5:30 [Alaska time] this evening under perfect conditions. Minimal wind, hardly anything, and clear, blue skies. Everyone did a great job getting up to the summit. Was a fantastic effort by everybody. Right now, I’m calling down from the Football Field. We wanted to get off the summit, because there are a bunch of other climbers coming up and we wanted to get out of the crowds, as they say. Now we’re back on the Football Field, taking a little break before heading back to camp. And everyone’s doing super well.  I’ll give an update on our progress when we get back down to Camp 17 in a little while. All you friends and family who are listening, you guys should be awfully proud of these folks. They did a great job today. Alright, talk to you later. Bye Bye.

RMI Guide Brent Okita

RMI Guide Brent Okita and Team on the summit of Mt. McKinley, Alaska. Photo: Brent Okita Descending Mt. McKinley's summit ridge. Photo: Brent Okita


RMI Guide Brent Okita calls in from the descent of Mt. McKinley's summit.

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

17

Dan & Team!! We are super excited for you guys and so proud that you accomplished this feat! Can’t wait to hear all about it, safe travels down!

read more

Posted by: Allison & Christine on 6/5/2014 at 5:49 am

Congratulations Bruce and team!  It is so cool being able to follow your progress up the mountain!  You are almost motivating me to want to mountaineer….almost…
Your fellow WFR,read more

Posted by: Kara on 6/5/2014 at 5:16 am


Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Going for the Summit

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 04, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 17,200'

June 4, 2014 - 9:30 am PT

Just spoke with RMI Guide Brent Okita and they are leaving high camp for their summit bid. His words on the weather this morning: “Massively glorious day on Mt. McKinley!”

Good luck to the team as they ascend to the highest point in North America!

On Mt. McKinley's West Buttress just below Washburn's Thumb. Photo: Brent Okita

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

12

Awesome work Mr. Wagner and all!

This is fabulous!!!

read more

Posted by: Bob on 6/4/2014 at 10:01 am

Rick Popp I hope it’s beautiful ❤️U
Carol

read more

Posted by: Carol on 6/4/2014 at 8:44 am


Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Reach 17,200’ Camp

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 04, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 17,200'

June 4, 2014 - 12:53 am PT

The winds have finally abated now that we’re in our tents here at 17,200 ft Camp. For much of the day we we’re climbing head on into the breeze, making for an uncomfortable climb to camp. But we’re psyched now. Tomorrow promises to be a great day, and given the fact that we had to ascend less than 1000’ we should be in good shape.
It was unfortunate the Buttress was so windy because it was such a beautiful climb and day.
Wish us luck with the weather and perhaps our next chat will be from the summit.
Good night from chilly 17,200’ camp.

RMI Guides Brent, Leah and Nick

Climbers on the ridge toward 17,200 ft on Mt. McKinley, Alaska.  Photo: RMI Collection Camp at 17,200 ft on Mt. McKinley, Alaska.  Photo: Brent Okita

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

2

Mt. McKinley: Okita and Team Visit the Edge of the World

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

June 1, 2014 11:47 pm PT

It has been a perfect rest day for us. Not perfect climbing weather, but plenty nice at camp to enjoy the day. Although many climbers took advantage of the relatively good weather to go for 17,200’ camp, many others were suspicious of the cloud cap over the summit that threatened winds on the Buttress. In fact, no guided groups went to 17,200’ today. But we had no such decisions to make. Instead, we slept in until 9:00 then, as we’ve done before, and feasted on a sumptuous brunch of smoked salmon, bagels and cream cheese. What decadence!

The guides had some chores and logistics to sort out, then we took the short tour east to the Edge of the World to take in the view from 14,000’ overlooking the Northeast fork of the Kahiltna Glacier, and affording views way down the glacier to where our very first camp of the expedition was.
We’ve done a lot of climbing since then, and have developed as a strong team caring for the well being of each other as much as ourselves. It’s nice seeing the kind of support these guys give each other.

Tomorrow brings us our biggest challenge of the trip, and everyone shares the mixed emotions of excitement and nervousness. We got through the headwall and fixed lines yesterday, but the Buttress itself is another beast. As is ascending the 3000’ to 17,200’, a new altitude record for many of us.
That this part of the route is the guides’ favorite part attests to the aesthetics of the climbing, and I think the team will get excited when they get on it.

We’re looking forward to a good, hard day. Because it will be a long day for us, which may even be followed by another even harder day (the summit?), this may be the last post of any length for a while.

Wish us luck!
RMI Guides Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, and Nick Hunt

RMI Guide Brent Okita preparing a smoked salmon, cream cheese, and bagel feast at 14,200' on Mt. McKinley, Alaska. Photo: Lindsay Mann Mt. Foraker as viewed from the Edge of the World at 14,000' on Mt. McKinley, Alaska. Photo: RMI Collection

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

6

Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Ascend the Fixed Lines

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | June 01, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

May 31, 2014 - 11:21 pm PT

The weather cooperated, sort of, for our big day climbing the infamous fixed lines to 16,200’. These are ropes fixed in place on a steep part of our route that offer security to our team as we climb it. As seen from camp this headwall is particularly impressive, and intimidating.

The winds had calmed down completely by the time we got up, and the day was looking good. However by the time we actually started walking clouds had rolled in obscuring our views and the route. But the sun could be seen through this layer giving us confidence that we’d climb out of it. And we did.

The headwall itself was challenging, but our training yesterday helped immeasurably. We all made it to 16,200’ where we cached the supplies we carried up and took a well-deserved break. Our descent was slow on the icy terrain, but we managed it fairly well.
By the time we got back to camp, the team was deservedly happy to have climbed this much anticipated part of the route.

And now it’s bed time. We’re all looking forward to sleeping in and being lazy tomorrow.

All for now from 14,200’,
RMI Guides Brent, Leah and Nick

An RMI team ascending the Mt. McKinley fixed lines. Photo: Brent Okita

On The Map

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

5

Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team’s Good Living at 14,200’

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | May 30, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

May 30, 2014 - 11:12 pm PT

The view from the vestibule this morning was not what I’d have called heartening. Clouds and snow dominated the picture, adding visual texture to the soft but incessant howl of the winds coming from the Buttress above. We could still see most of the landmarks around camp, but in the shadow of the early morning it didn’t look promising for our carry. So, after talking with Leah and Nick, I happily crawled back into my warm sack.

We later awoke at the more reasonable hour of 9:00 to get the stoves fired up and start our day. No one complained about not climbing. I think having a real rest day was welcome by all.

So what do we do on these days? First of all, we hang out in the Posh an extra hour or two, then we cut a few snow blocks to further reinforce the walls we built around our tents yesterday. It was impressive seeing the team rally and build some really good walls. I think everyone was feeling good and happy to be doing something. Twelve hours in a tent can do that to a person.
But a rest day is a rest day and some good tent time is a must. A group was playing an animated game of BS next door to us in the Posh. Others were catching up on things on the radio. Naps are never a bad thing, and in this tent a few games of cribbage were contested.  We even got in a bit of rope craft review and knot tying practice. 

Such is life for the climber hanging out at 14,200’ waiting for Mother Nature to offer us a little friendlier weather to continue our climb up the flanks of one of her most beautiful mountain creations.
We’re all doing well and happily waiting this little set back out.

Cheers,
RMI Guides Brent, Leah and Nick

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

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2014 Email Alerts

8

Previous Page More Entries