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Mt. McKinley:  Okita and Team Cache at 16,600’

We awoke to a clear, cold morning, excited to get our climb up the fixed ropes and onto the West Butress started. With several other guided groups set to climb this morning, we coordinated our departures and ended up being the first big party up the hill, alllowing us to move unhindered by other traffic. This ended up working out great for us because our teamed proved to be up to the task of climbing the steep terrain of the route.

Under perfect conditions, we negotiated the fixed lines that seem so dauntingly steep from camp, and made our way up the Butress to a cache spot at 16,600’. This is a spot higher than most folks cache, yet everyone made it there in good form. At this point the climbers who were still feeling great went on to carry all the way up to 17,200’ camp, a feat that I had yet to be able to do with a group in 20 years! This is certainly a testament to how well our team is doing.

So, after this great success (and incredibly hard work) we are really looking forward to our first rest day tomorrow. Given the amount of energy everyone has given to reach this point, it will be the rest we so deserve to charge back up the batteries in preparation for our last move towards the summit.
I, for one, am looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow.

Good night,


Comments (7)

Go Frank, go!! I’m following with excitement and wishing you well. Elizabeth from Rainier session. PS. Brandi is heading to Nepal next week!

Posted by: elizabeth holt on

Wow you guys are doing awsome.  I am so happy the weather is in your favor.  Enjoy your much need rest day.  I will b thinking of you all please stay safe.  I love you Maile.  xoxo Mom

Posted by: Ginny myers on

Wow what a climb…Thinking about you daily, have fun, be safe, Love, Mom and Dad.

Posted by: Lynne Candelario on

Way to go team!  Awesome job!!  Oh by the way Zac . . . John Rich won Celebrity Apprentice and the Blockbuster on Bayview is closing.  I passed this website on to your team at work so they are all following your progress too.  Tatum is telling everyone who will listen that her dad is “pooping on a mountain!”  I guess after the blog about the “loo” that’s a pretty important thing to you too.  Love you and miss you! M, T & B

Posted by: mary candelario on

HW:So good to hear your guys are doing so well! Enjoy your rest day as the the most challenging part is still ahead of you. I hope the food we packed still tastes good at 16,600. Took BB to Eatly today after the soccer class and we had a good time. We love you! -F

Posted by: F on

Amazing!!  Impressive!!  We knew you were all good, but not THAT good!  Keep up the hard work and you’ll have Brent saying you’re his best team EVER!  Hope you get to try and summit soon.

Posted by: Mary Vierling on

So glad to hear from you!!! Enjoy your rest day - well deserved. Please, stay in touch. We are following your every step here. As much as we would love to see you soon, we will wait as long as it takes so please play it safe! Love you very very very much!

Posted by: Marina on

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More Updates


Mt. McKinley:  Billy and Crew Back at 17,000’ After Summit Climb


Mt. Rainier: May 28th Update

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