Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Reach the Summit!

Posted by: | May 30, 2011
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 17,200'

What a perfect day for a summit! And so, what better way to spend the day high on Denali than to go for a little walk. First to Denali Pass still shrouded in the cold morning’s shade. Then, bang a hard right followed by a sweeping left towards Archdeacon’s Tower. Over hill and dale to the Football Field, then up Pig Hill for a final but kicker and onto the summit ridge.
We finally reached the summit at about 5:30, wearing our big down parkas to protect us from a rather chilly breeze. What a day!

Unfortunately we were missing a couple of key members of our team, a consequence of not taking a rest day after our big push up from 14,200’ camp. But we all discussed the gamble of taking advantage of a perfect day on your first morning and agreed on the strategy.

So, Clay and Frank, having reached their personal high point of 19,000’ today, will have another chance at the summit tomorrow if the weather holds up along with their motivation. These two have probably earned the right to summit as much as anyone due to their hard work for the team, selflessness, and good nature. Maile, Leon and I, along with the rest of the team, are completely committed to helping these two amazing individuals reach their goals.

We’re all looking forward to a good night’s sleep, so until next time…

RMI Guides Brent, Leon and Maile

RMI Guide Brent Okita checks in after reaching the summit of Mt. McKinley with his team.

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Frank - awesome. What a fantastic accomplishment; to think that I personally know someone who scaled Mt Mckinley. Can’t wait to hear the story and see pics.

Lou (Adam’s dad)

Posted by: Lou Lenz on 6/4/2011 at 4:20 am

Been looking for your name Uncle Frank!! Good Luck, hope all is well!! We’re thinking of you and sending you the best weather ever!

Posted by: Britain on 6/2/2011 at 6:40 am

Congrats to you and your team Steve! What at awesome accomplishment! Now get back safe!
Bill Sinak

Posted by: Bill Sinak on 6/1/2011 at 5:05 am

Congratulations team!  What an accomplishment!  Good luck tomorrow Clay and Frank - we hope the weather holds out for you.  Zac we are so proud of you and we are looking forward to your safe return.  I think Belen is catching on that you haven’t been in the ‘bafroom’ this whole time.  we miss you and we can’t wait to have you safely back home.  All our love, M, T & B

Posted by: mary candelario on 6/1/2011 at 2:23 am

Paul: Congrats to you!
I knew you’d be a keener on this mountain.
A good day, indeed…

Posted by: Rachel J. on 5/31/2011 at 10:52 pm

CONGRATULATION!  I am soooooo happy you had a good summit day. Be safe coming down remember your not done yet.  I am thinking of you all and hoping you are getting some rest.  I love you Maile girl xoxo Mom

Posted by: ginny myers on 5/31/2011 at 5:47 pm

Congratulation team Okita,
Way to go Steve and Roger. If it’s safe; do everything you can to help Frank and Clay summit. It is truly amazing that you reached the summit at such a pace.
And remember Steve your work is not done until you deliver me to the top of Rainer in Aug. 
Mom called me at work to give me the great news. She was really excited. Can’t wait to see you.

Posted by: Doc Vierling on 5/31/2011 at 5:21 pm

Good Luck Frank and Clay!!!

Posted by: Carole on 5/31/2011 at 9:19 am

Hooray to Sergey and team who made the summit so soon!!Have a well deserved rest and I’ll pray the weather holds for the rest of the team to achieve their goals.
Please post more pix!

Posted by: Linda on 5/31/2011 at 8:36 am

Zac, Congratulations, what a wonderful experience, we are all so proud of you.  Love, Mom and Dad.

Posted by: Lynne Candelario on 5/31/2011 at 8:04 am

CONGRATS - AMAZING!!! Hope the weather holds up for the other two guys and you all summit by tonight as a team. Great job! Take a good rest and please please please be careful on the way down. Love you and can not wait to see you!

Posted by: Marina on 5/31/2011 at 7:52 am

HW - Congrats!!! What an accomplishment! It seems you guys are doing this in record time too. Enjoy some well deserved rest and please be careful on the rest of the way down. We are very pround of you! - Love, F

Posted by: F on 5/31/2011 at 7:46 am

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