Mt. McKinley: Nugent & Team Return Home

Posted by: Billy Nugent, Mike King, Sean Collon | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley

Hi all!
Billy here checking in for the last time from this year’s Denali expedition. Our team showed tremendous poise after our butt kicking on our first summit attempt and rested through another marginal day on the way to our eventual summit day that was absolutely beautiful.  We encountered some moderate winds in the 30 mph range but generally enjoyed clear skies and decently warm temps. It took us just over 12 hours of solid work to make the round trip mission from our high camp at 17,000’ and the whole team was pretty worked by the end. The next morning we awoke at a leisurely hour, packed up camp and descended the West Buttress back to Camp 4 at 14,000’ where we were greeted by Dave Hahn’s expedition with cheesy bacon quesadillas! Quite the treat… After picking up our cache at 14 we continued down through extremely deep snow to 11,000’ where we ended up camping again because the team was pretty wasted yet again. Our final day on the mountain was surprisingly clear with only occasional sections of whiteout as we marched down the Kahiltna towards Basecamp. Except for a little excitement involving a crevasse fall the trip was mostly a slog. And as we arrived at the lower airstrip around 6 pm we could see the runway markers of the upper airstrip but were relieved to hear from Lisa that we wouldn’t need to travel any further. K2 was already on the way and going to land right next to us. And just like that we were in the land of the living slamming burgers and downing beers with all of the tourists in Talkeetna. Talk about a culture shock! Needless to say, the gang went big rocking the Fairview and ended up closing down the Teepee (and nearly getting kicked out!). A proper way to end a successful Denali expedition. Too much fun!

I’d like to thank both Mike King and Sean Collon for their hard work and the good times and the rest of the team members for persevering despite crummy weather forecasts and tough odds. It’s a trip I won’t forget for a while.

See ya next year!

RMI Guide Billy Nugent.

Sign Up For Mount McKinley 2015 Email Alerts

1

Ha ha.  And who was the last one standing.  One about to be birthday boy as I recall!  Fabulous trip all around.  Just fabulous.

read more

Posted by: Art Muir on 7/7/2015 at 9:17 pm


Mountaineering Training | My Go-To Workout

Posted by: Pete Van Deventer | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Mountaineering Fitness & Training

There is no way around it: there are some days where fitting my planned workout into my schedule is impossible.  On the days when chores and errands catch up with me and I don’t have much time to do a workout, I have a go-to workout that I know I can do in 45-50 minutes.  On a day when life feels too busy and I’m tempted to blow my workout off, having a quick workout ready helps me to stay motivated and get out the door.

My workout involves a short, 10 minute running warm-up, 15 minutes of short intervals, a 5-10 minute cool-down, and a short series of core exercises.  Depending on what phase of training I am in and what my goals are, I may alter the pace, number, or duration of my intervals.  During my aerobic building phase, I might run at a tempo that is slightly slower than my 5k race pace for 2 minutes, recover at a light jog for 1 minute, and repeat 4 more times.  This bump in pace helps to mix up my tempo and keeps my legs feeling a bit quicker, but the effort isn’t so hard that I’m building up large amounts of lactic acid.  Later in the season during an intensity phase, I might push the pace of those intervals right to my threshold, or do shorter 1 minute, all out efforts, with a full minute of recovery in between.  This helps to build my anaerobic threshold, and develop my ability to recover as well.  The warm up and cool down are really important for preventing injuries, and I try to resist the temptation to skip or cut short either. 

The light core session to close doesn’t necessarily build a lot more strength, like a dedicated strength session would be designed to do, but it gives me maintenance.  I mix up the exercises, but an example workout might be:

  • 3 sets of 50 crunches
  •  
  • 3 sets of 20 pushups
  •  
  • and 3 sets of 20 dips


I always end this workout with the same series, something that we used to call a “super set” on the college ski team. It consists of:

  • 100 crunches (feet on the ground, curling my torso towards my knees, but not a full sit-up)
  •  
  • 50 sit-ups to the side (alternating sides)
  •  
  • 25 leg raises (some straight on, some to either side)
  •  
  • and 100 more crunches to finish

Having one piece of my routine that is exactly the same each time lets me develop a benchmark for how my core strength is feeling. 

While your go to workout doesn’t need to mirror this, try to develop a workout that has definitive goals.  If your time is pressed, a short series of intervals will be more beneficial for your fitness than a 30 minute easy jog, most of the time.  Having some goals allows you to be focused during the workout, even if it is just for a short period of time.  Your go-to workout can be any genre: cycling, running, swimming, or spinning are all good options depending on where you live and can do readily.  Remember to build up your strength over time; trying to jump right into a “super set” tomorrow if you haven’t been doing a lot of core strength is a recipe to get injured.  Good luck with your training, and stay motivated: it will pay you back in enjoyment many times over on your next climb!
_____
Pete Van Deventer is a senior guide at RMI Expeditions, guiding climbs on Mt. Rainier, Mt. McKinley, and abroad. He calls Aspen, CO home, where he also teaches avalanche courses and is a fully-certified ski instructor.

Trekkers take a moment to sip tea in Pheriche, Nepal.   Photo: Linden Mallory

Peru Seminar: Team Arrives at Base Camp of Nevado Copa

Posted by: Elias de Andres Martos, Robby Young | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Peru
Elevation: 10,000'

Greetings from Nevado Copa Basecamp, one of the most beautiful places on earth!(seriously) We all climbed this morning to this idyllic place, and ever since, our eyes have been put on the slopes of this Andean giant that sits before us. All is ready to launch tomorrow towards high camp, and our forecast is telling us we’ll have the best weather possible. Everyone is really well acclimated, and the good sports reign amongst the crew. Stay tuned for the progress of the graduation climb of this 2nd edition of our Peru Seminar.

RMI Guide Elías de Andres Martos and team

Sign Up For Peru 2015 Email Alerts


Ecuador Volcanoes: Walter & Team Summit Cayambe!

Posted by: Mike Walter | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Ecuador
Elevation: 18.997'

We had a very long and successful day in Ecuador yesterday. It actually started the night before, with an eleven o’clock wake up call for an alpine start on our summit bid of Cayambe. The weather had improved dramatically, with a starry sky, no wind, and warm temperatures. We set out from the climbers’ hut a bit after midnight and the team topped out on the summit after nearly eight hours of climbing. Challenging climbing conditions were encountered, including steep slopes and large neve penitentes.

Everyone descended safely to the climbers’ hut and soon we were bumping down the four-wheel drive road back to town. Our drive south to our current hacienda, Chilcabamba, was delayed as roads were closed for hours for the entrance of the Pope into Quito. The Pope’s visit to Ecuador is obviously an important event, and heightened security is expected. Unfortunately for us, the timing meant we could not travel from the north of Quito to the south of Quito for hours. Our group of weary climbers finally arrived at our hacienda 22 hours after waking up to go climbing. A hot shower was about all we could muster up before hitting the sack.

After a great (but long) day yesterday, now we’re enjoying a peaceful rest day at the hacienda. Tomorrow we’re off to the Cotopaxi climbers’ hut for another climbing adventure. We’ll be in touch…

RMI Guide Mike Walter

Sunrise on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter Snow formations on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter Meandering crevasse on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter

Sign Up For Ecuador 2015 Email Alerts

2

Impressive Chuck!  Tell the Pope hello!

read more

Posted by: Jeremy Bates on 7/7/2015 at 12:54 pm

Proud of you, Chuck H.!

read more

Posted by: Jeremy Morton on 7/7/2015 at 12:24 pm


Mt. Rainier: July 7th Summit!

Posted by: Casey Grom | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

Our Four Day Summit Climb Team led by RMI Guide Casey Grom reached the summit of Mt. Rainier early this morning via the Disappointment Cleaver Route.  Casey reported a beautiful morning with calm winds and moderate temperatures.

Congratulations to Today’s Team!

An RMI Guide on the Summit of Rainier. RMI Photo Collection

More Entries

Expedition Stats

Expedition Skills Seminar - Winter
4/12 - 4/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - 12,400'
Everest Base Camp - Island Peak
3/18 - 4/12/2015
Everest Base Camp - Summit / Island Peak - Summit
Mount Everest Base Camp Trek
3/18 - 4/7/2015
Everest Base Camp - Summit
Mount Everest Base Camp Trek
3/21 - 4/12/2015
Everest Base Camp - Summit
Alaska Mountaineering Seminar - Expedition
5/2 - 5/12/2015
Radio Control Tower - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
5/9 - 5/13/2015
Mt. Rainier - 12,300'
Five Day Summit Climb
5/11 - 5/15/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/13 - 5/16/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/14 - 5/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
5/13 - 5/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/15 - 5/18/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/20 - 5/23/2015
Mt. Rainier - 13,200'
Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir
5/17 - 5/22/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Alaska Mountaineering Seminar - Alpine
5/8 - 5/18/2015
The Munchkin - Summit / The Throne - Lost Marsupial - Summit / Big Arapiles - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
5/20 - 5/24/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/21 - 5/24/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/22 - 5/25/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Alaska Mountaineering Seminar - Expedition
5/14 - 5/24/2015
Radio Control Tower - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir
5/24 - 5/29/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/27 - 5/30/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/28 - 5/31/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
5/27 - 5/31/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
5/29 - 6/1/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
5/5 - 6/2/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
5/12 - 6/2/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir
5/31 - 6/5/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/3 - 6/6/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/4 - 6/7/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/5 - 6/8/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
6/4 - 6/8/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/6 - 6/9/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
5/19 - 6/7/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Kautz
6/5 - 6/10/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/7 - 6/10/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/8 - 6/11/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/9 - 6/12/2015
Mt. Rainier - 14,410'
Four Day Summit Climb
6/10 - 6/13/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/11 - 6/14/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
6/11 - 6/15/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/12 - 6/15/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/13 - 6/16/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons
6/12 - 6/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
6/13 - 6/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/14 - 6/17/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/15 - 6/18/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Kautz
6/14 - 6/19/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/16 - 6/19/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/17 - 6/20/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/18 - 6/21/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
5/26 - 6/18/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Mt. McKinley Upper West Rib Expedition
5/28 - 6/18/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/19 - 6/22/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
6/19 - 6/23/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/20 - 6/23/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/21 - 6/24/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/22 - 6/25/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons
6/20 - 6/25/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
6/2 - 6/21/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/23 - 6/26/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/24 - 6/27/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mt. Baker - North Ridge
6/22 - 6/23/2015
Mt. Baker - Summit
Forbidden Peak - West Ridge
6/22 - 6/27/2015
Forbidden Peak - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/25 - 6/28/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/26 - 6/29/2015
Mt. Rainier - 11,300'
Five Day Summit Climb
6/25 - 6/29/2015
Mt. Rainier - 11,400'
Four Day Summit Climb
6/27 - 6/30/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/28 - 7/1/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Expedition Skills Seminar - Kautz
6/26 - 7/1/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/29 - 7/2/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Emmons Climb
6/29 - 7/3/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
6/30 - 7/3/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Mt. Baker - North Ridge
6/26 - 6/28/2015
Mt. Baker - Summit
Mount McKinley Expedition
6/9 - 6/28/2015
Mt. McKinley - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
7/1 - 7/4/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
7/2 - 7/5/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Five Day Summit Climb
7/2 - 7/6/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Four Day Summit Climb
7/4 - 7/7/2015
Mt. Rainier - Summit
Sign Up For Dispatch Alerts
  • Trekkers take a moment to sip tea in Pheriche, Nepal.   Photo: Linden Mallory
  • Sunrise on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • Snow formations on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • Meandering crevasse on Cayambe, Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • An RMI Guide on the Summit of Rainier. RMI Photo Collection
  • Visiting the Ojamaa Orphanage in Tanzania. Photo: Chelsea Hall
  • Children jump roping at the Ojamaa Orphanage. Photo: Chelsea Hall
  • Reading with the Ojamaa Orphanage children in Tanzania. Photo: Chelsea Hall
  • The Rogers Kilimanjaro team dinner at the Dik Dik Hotel, Tanzania. Photo: Madison Cronin
  • View from the Edge of the World on Mount McKinley, Alaska. Photo: RMI Collection
  • Mt. McKinley's 14K Camp. Photo: John Race
  • View of Mount Rainier from Paradise. Photo: NPS Webcam
  • An RMI team leaving Denali's 11K Camp, descending to Base Camp. Photo: Lindsay Mann
  • Climbing Nevados Urus in the Ishinca Valley, Peru. Photo: Lindsay Mann
  • Tocllaraju from Nevados Urus summit. Photo: Elias de Andres Martos
  • Mt. Foraker from Mt. McKinley's 14,200' Camp. Photo: RMI Collection
  • An art vendor at the Otavalo Market in Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • A produce stall at the Otavalo Market in Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • Locals perusing stalls at the Otavalo Market in Ecuador. Photo: Mike Walter
  • Climbers on the summit ridge of Mt. McKinley.  Photo: Dave Hahn
  • The view from the summit of Mt. McKinley, Alaska.  Photo: RMI Collection
  • Climbers on the top of Motorcyle Hill at 11,600 ft on Mt. McKinley.  Photo: RMI Collection
  • Climbers approaching the summit of Mt. Rainier.  Photo: Seth Waterfall
  • The RMI Ecuador Volcanoes team ascending Fuya Fuya with Cayambe in the distance. Photo: Mike Walter
  • The RMI Ecuador Volcanoes team ascending a 3rd class ridge on Fuya Fuya. Photo: Mike Walter
  • Cayambe as seen from the summit of Fuya Fuya. Photo: Mike Walter
  • The RMI Ecuador Volcanoes team on the summit of Fuya Fuya. Photo: Mike Walter
  • The East and West Ridges of Forbidden Peak as seen from Sharkfin Tower in the North Cascades, WA. Photo: Kristina Weller
  • 11,200 ft Camp on Mt. McKinley, AK with Kahiltna Dome in the distance. Photo: RMI Collection
  • The RMI July 3rd Four Day Summit Climb team enroute to Camp Muir on Mt. Rainier. Photo: Win Whittaker
  • Sunrise on the Upper Mountain of Mt. Rainier. Photo: Win Whittaker