Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Reach the Summit!
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.