Denali Custom Expedition: Hahn & Team Descend to 14,000’ Camp
Sunday, July 7, 2019 - 8:47 PM PT
The fine weather continued, except there was an irritating wind blowing at 17,000 this morning when we got stirring at 7:30 AM. The wind wasn’t particularly strong or cold, but it wouldn’t go away either, so it made breakfast and packing slightly less fun. We were out of 17,000’ Camp by 10:30 and walking carefully down the crest of the West Buttress. The wind wasn’t strong enough to make anybody miss a step, but it made communication tricky. Even so, we made good time down the ridge and then down the fixed ropes. Traffic is nonexistent now as the very last three or four teams of the season were all above us and going for the top in the breeze. We reached 14,000 by 1 PM and decided to build camp. Tempting as it would have been to continue on down the mountain, we have to deal now with the downside to all the fabulous weather. The warm temperatures have caused the West Buttress to shed a lot more rock than usual. We’ll try to let it cool a little before venturing around Windy Corner. An Alpine Start is called for, so we’ll keep resting in preparation for a midnight departure. We’ll try to go all the way to the airstrip from here in order to get the lower glacier in cool conditions as well.
It MIGHT be our final night on the mountain. Stay tuned.
RMI Guide Dave Hahn
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July 7, 2019
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