Mt. McKinley: Okita & Team Reach 14,200’ Camp

Posted by: Brent Okita, Leah Fisher, Nick Hunt | May 29, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount McKinley
Elevation: 14,200'

May 28, 2014 - 10:33 pm PT

Evaluating the weather at 6:20 this morning from the vestibule of our tent I saw a somewhat similar scene to what I saw yesterday. With one exception. A little lightness shining through the clouds to the north. Faint in the early morning light, but there it was. So with that small glimmer of hope that the weather might cooperate for us today, we set the wheels in motion. Stoves were fired up and the call to wake up made. Still uncertain if the weather would improve enough, we held off packing up the tents until last.
But finally the clouds parted enough to give us the confidence to head to 14,200’ camp. We could see the sun about 1,000’ above the clouds we were in. Unfortunately, Mother Nature didn’t want to make it too easy and threw some gusty winds our way on Squirrel Hill. It seemed like the weather might be changing, but everyone was climbing well so we persevered and by the time we got above that hill, things had mellowed out. Even Windy Corner wasn’t too bad.
We eventually made it to camp at 14,200’ where the sun was out and it was warm and pleasant. To make things even nicer, we were greeted by the RMI group ahead of us who were camped there. Led by Pete Van Deventer, the whole team came out to lend us a hand getting camp set up.

Everybody had great appetites at dinner, a good sign given that we had just moved 3,000’ to our higher camp. It was a tired, but very happy team that put down bowl after bowl of Ramen tonight.

We’re all ecstatic to be here tonight, and I couldn’t be prouder of how the team climbed today.
Well, it’s about time that I hit the sack as well.

RMI Guides Brent, Leah and Nick

RMI Guide Brent Okita takes a break near Motorcycle Hill on Mt. McKinley.  Photo: Lindsay Mann An RMI Team ascending Squirrel Hill, Mt. McKinley, Alaska.  Photo: Brent Okita

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Daniel and Team: Great job guys!!! We were hoping the weather would be on your side finally and it was. So proud of you all for making it to 14,200. Beautiful pics! Love you/ Mom & Rob

Posted by: Lena Akerman on 5/30/2014 at 4:16 am

Bon courage ! Nous vous souhaitons, Mathieu et moi de la belle temperature pour les jours a venir. Bonjour a Brent et Robby, nous lisons vos messages tous les jours.


Posted by: Genevieve on 5/29/2014 at 8:11 pm

Glad to see so many climbers on the mountain and that slow progress is being made. I’m following along with your group for daily updates, as we have our own group also camped out at 14,200. If you happen to see Brian, Kirk, Ed, Clark and Chris From Wyoming/Pittsburgh,, give them a shout out! Brian is my husband and we talk via satellite phone every few days so I can update our blog and know they are safe. They are on Day 13 and making great progress. Keep up the great climbing!! Prayers for a safe journey and your window to open soon!

Posted by: Kris on 5/29/2014 at 5:13 pm

Brady and buds,
Sounds like a wonderful day.  I love the pictures.
We love hearing how each phase is going. 
Living vicariously. 
Stay warm.

Posted by: Barbara Guido on 5/29/2014 at 2:00 pm

Glad to see you made it to 14. I hope you are staying away from the tasty bites! Love and miss you.

Posted by: Carol on 5/29/2014 at 6:40 am

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