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Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Jones and Team Wrap it Up

June 23, 2014 - 2:10 PM PT

The day, yesterday, dawned cold and windy again, seemingly the weather theme for the entire trip. We decided to launch out of 11k camp anyway, with the siren song of airplane rides motivating our packing. When all the kits were loaded into duffels, we started the Kahiltna Shuffle in whiteout conditions, a stiff breeze keeping the temps cool despite the hard work of dragging big sleds downhill.

Soon we passed our friends who were camped at 9500’, and stopped in for a quick hello as the weather got just a little better. We continued down the glacier under improving skies, with only one or two minor freak-outs over the cumbersome sleds that threatened to take us out at the knees.

Finally the sun broke through, and the last grind up Heartbreak Hill was about as hot as anywhere on earth. But with the blue skies, we knew that the planes were flying - and that kept us moving right into base camp. Within about 10 minutes, our K2 Aviation Otter had landed, and we loaded up the kit and let internal combustion take over.

The evening wrap-up by the Susitna River was a special event, and Denali even came out from behind the clouds to give us full closure. It has been an incredible adventure from the very beginning, and while the actual climbing is over, the memories and experiences we’ve shared will remain. Thanks for following along and for all the support along the way!

RMI Guide Tyler Jones and team


Comments (3)

Congrats to the team! I can’t wait to hear more about the trip and see more pictures. Love you Jake and hope to see you soon

Posted by: Bonnie Garfield on

Tyler, Garrett and Geoff….well done and thank you from all of the John Stenderup family.  The RMI experience for John included weather adversity and other circumstances that will be life long lessons for all of your teams.  Your superb training enabled some to summit and prevented possible disaster for others.  I, and I hope John also, will forever retain “the summit is for the ego and the journey is for the soul” incantation.  Thank you.  Best Regards, Kent Stenderup

Posted by: Kent Stenderup on

Wow, guys, impressive work—-I hope u know you had the best guides w/ you—-great job and congrats!
Ben

Posted by: ben Alvarez on

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