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Entries from Expedition Dispatches


Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Crest the Shira Plateau

We woke to crystal clear skies and a view of Kibo -Kilimanjaro’s central peak.  After breakfast, we were walking by 8:30 AM.  Our trail today was more difficult, right from the start, with steeper grades and bigger steps through volcanic rock.  We labored uphill through the “heather and mooreland zone” a very different type of vegetation than yesterday’s near jungle of big trees.  In general, we were coming into the open, with bigger views in all directions.  Eventually we worked along a ridge crest enjoying glimpses of hawks and eagles soaring below our vantage point.  After several hours and several thousand feet of vertical gain, we began a traverse to the left out toward the Shira Plateau.  By afternoon, clouds had overtaken us and we walked in swirling mists.  A few steeper rock features required sharper concentration and the use of handholds and balancing, but eventually we turned the corner onto the plateau and walked down a couple hundred feet on easy ground to reach Shira Camp at 12,600 ft.  The day’s March had taken us just over five hours.  We’d earned a restful afternoon going back and forth between our sleeping tents and the dining tent.  Rain showers caught up to us in the early evening, but only for 15 minutes or so.  By the time we finished dinner we had largely clear skies and a million stars. 

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Yahoo! Thinking about you guys every day. Onward and upward!

Posted by: Lynne Elliott (FA) on 2/3/2018 at 6:44 am

Dilly Dilly! Press forward! Great photos!

Posted by: Lee and Susie on 2/2/2018 at 1:34 pm


Kilimanjaro: Grom & Team Continue Their Safari at Tarangire National Park

Hello everyone,

Today we headed to Tarangire National Park known for its abundant elephants, and it didn’t disappoint. Not sure how many we saw, probably several hundred at the least. It wouldn’t seem like we could get tired of seeing elephants, but there were so many that eventually we had to keep driving so we could see other animals.
There were lots of giraffes, impalas, monkeys, ostriches, and many others.
One of the highlights was seeing a male Cheetah up close, only about 20 feet away. He was just relaxing under a big tree overlooking a small pond and hardly seemed to notice us.
We are spending our last night here in Africa at Tarangire Balloon Camp, which has beautiful tented rooms with screen windows to allow the sounds of the African bush in.
Everyone is doing great and hoping to see a few more big cats on our way out tomorrow. Then it will be back to our main lodge near Arusha for a brief stop before catching our evening flights home.
Thanks for following.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Start Out of the Machame Gate

Sitting down to our 7AM breakfast on the patio at Arumeru River Lodge, we had a great view of Kilimanjaro this morning.  We loaded up the bus and rolled out of the lodge just a few minutes after 8 AM.  Traffic was light on the main road and we made good time cruising through the farmland and small villages.  Kilimanjaro got bigger and more magnificent as we turned from the highway and began walking uphill toward the 6,000 ft Machame Gate to the national park.  As usual, it took a little time to get the team registered and the staffing sorted, but by 10:50, we set out walking in warm, and sunny conditions.  Filibert, one of our local guide staff, set the slow and steady pace up through the tall and lush forest.  Freddie, our chief guide, along with guides Venance and Happyson brought up the rear.  Things clouded up as the day progressed, the high humidity and exertion had everybody sweating before too long.  We saw blue monkeys in the trees, a few good birds, and even a small chameleon on the trail.  The track itself was in good condition, not too muddy, which certainly helped.  We came into Machame Camp (at 9,900 ft) in just over five hours.  The Utah gang was delighted to find camp already built and ready for moving into.  We met in the mess tent for afternoon tea and then finished the day a few hours later with one of chef Tosha’s excellent dinners.  Everybody did great with this big day of work, but most were also plenty happy with turning in early for bed at 8 PM.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Yea, Caspers!!! You got this. Fun to follow your treck. Looks like quite a different route than we took.

Posted by: Laurie on 2/2/2018 at 5:55 pm

Looking good there!  Hello to Lynn and Joanna!!  Excited to watch the progress of your trip!  So jealous!

Posted by: Troy Christensen on 2/2/2018 at 7:59 am


Aconcagua: King & Team Settle Into Camp 2

The team awoke from a restful night of sleep ready to pack up and make our move to Aconcagua Camp 2. We enjoyed a warm breakfast and coffee in the sun, then packed our things and headed uphill. After three stretches of moderate uphill walking, surrounded by wonderful views of the Central Andes, the team pulled into camp with spirits high and feeling strong. We set up camp in time for an afternoon siesta and snack that everyone enjoyed. We’re looking forward to a restful evening here at Camp 2 to prepare for our carry to high camp tomorrow. The weather is looking good, the team is feeling strong and we’re all excited to keep moving up the mountain. Thanks for following along!

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Nice work. I assume Justin has been eaten by now.

Posted by: Peter on 2/2/2018 at 8:47 am

Go Team Go!!!! Wishing you all the Best! Happy Birthday Tom!!

Posted by: Dave on 2/2/2018 at 2:57 am


Aconcagua: Tucker & Team End Trek, Return to Mendoza

The team did great on the mountain one last time.
We started the stoves at 6:30 am and by 8 am we headed down valley and out of Aconcagua National Park. Our vehicle transfers went well thanks to our fantastic support on and off the mountain by Fernando Grajales Expeditions they were spot on with support throughout this expedition thank you so much, we could not have had such success without you. Our team just finished a nice celebration dinner here in Mendoza. We are cleaned up, well fed and now looking forward to a nice bed for rest. Tomorrow some will start the journey home, others a meat cooking tour, wine tour, golfing or just some time by the pool. I will enjoy the little bit of rest and recharging getting ready for big Sunday in support of my tribes’ alliance to Foxboro, go Pats!

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

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Aconcagua: King & Team Enjoy Rest Day at Camp 1

Today our team is continuing to acclimate by enjoying a rest day at Camp 1. We had lighter wind last night when combined with the carry day made for a better night’s sleep for everyone. The forecast is looking good for a summit attempt on the 5th. The team is doing great, feeling well rested and excited to continue moving up the mountain tomorrow. Until then, we continue to enjoy the amazing scenery and calm weather.

RMI Guide Mike King

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Good morning team.
You guys and gals set the bar very high on this climb. Keep up the good work and enjoy all ,
Love you Dawn, To the top. :}

Posted by: Jerry & Lori Golding on 2/1/2018 at 6:54 am

Hey Team! Wishing you all the best. Dawn and Tom and team. I’m sending all my strength to you!!! Climb High my friends!!!

Posted by: Dave Kestek on 2/1/2018 at 3:34 am


Kilimanjaro: Grom & Team Explore the Ngorongoro Crater

Jambo everyone,

Today we visited Ngorongoro Crater. The crater is roughly 100 square miles and is home for the 30,000 to 40,000 animals that have taken up residence.
We hit the road early with hopes of catching a few more animals before the heat of the day.
There were many sightings today of hyenas, jackles, ostrich, and countless other birds. We didn’t manage to see many lions, but did get pretty close to one big male.
One of the highlights was seeing not one, but five Black Rhino which have become very rare do to poaching.
We wrapped up the day with a visit to a Maasai village not far from the crater rim. The Maasai people are a semi-nomadic tribe that exist almost entirely off of their cattle. The team spent time asking questions and enjoyed being shown around their small and simple village.

We have just finished another wonderful meal here at the Plantation Lodge under the stars and the full moon that hopefully everyone back home gets to see too.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Arrive in Arusha, Tanzania

We’ve got the makings of a fine climbing team.  Eight pals from Utah and one guide from New Mexico came together in Usa River, Tanzania these last couple of days to begin a Kilimanjaro adventure.  Today our program formally began just after breakfast in the gardens of the Arumeru River Lodge.  We sat for a bit discussing strategies and priorities for our week-long attempt on Africa’s highest point.  Then it was time for equipment checks and packing up back in the rooms.  We want to be ready for departure bright and early tomorrow.  All this preparation still allowed time for a combination of relaxing and exploring in the afternoon.  Some braved the heat to walk the short distance into the nearby village while others explored the reclining chairs by the swimming pool.  We’re each working through jet lag via our own methods.  Kilimanjaro showed itself in the distance at sundown as the haze and clouds melted away.  Just after dusk, we sat down to dinner on the patio while the super blue moon rose over East Africa.  All are excited to get walking up a mountain tomorrow morning. 

Best Regards
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Good luck Utah team! Looking forward to keeping up with all your adventures!  Enjoy! Lee and Susie

Posted by: Susie and Lee on 2/1/2018 at 6:26 pm

Good Luck!  Fingers crossed and thoughts are with you.  You can do it.

Posted by: Lynette Elliott on 1/31/2018 at 3:55 pm


Aconcagua: Tucker & Team Retrace Their Steps Through the Vacas Valley

RMI Guide Mark Tucker checked in from their last trek camp. After reaching the summit on Saturday morning the team returned to high camp, the following day they descended to Aconcagua Base Camp.  With a good nights rest in the thick air of 13,800’ they packed all their gear, loaded mules and retraced their steps through the Vacas Valley.  Tomorrow they will complete their trek and arrive at the end of the trail. By afternoon they plan to be showered and ready for a hearty dinner celebration in Mendoza.
Congratulations to the team!

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Congratulations Mark and Company!  John Branchflower and I summited with Ilan Zeimer of Grajales on Jan 23 and then returned to Penitentes via Plaza de Mulas Base Camp, so we didn’t see you on our way down.  I managed to buy an air mattress from one of the Canadian climbers at Plaza Argentina who was heading back down to replace the one that blew up on me, or I think it would have been heading down myself.  See you in Ashford this summer!  Craig Falkenhagen, Atherton, CA

Posted by: Craig Falkenhagen on 1/31/2018 at 5:13 pm

Congrats!  Safe travels.

Posted by: Mo on 1/31/2018 at 5:41 am


Kilimanjaro: Grom & Team’s First Day on Safari

Today was our first day of safari and we headed west to visit the beautiful Lake Manyara, which is a brief stopping ground for the many migratory animals and full of beautiful birds. Everyone enjoyed the day cruising around in our safari vehicles with cold beverages in hand while seeing the animals.
We managed to see a few wildebeest, zebras, Cape buffalo, giraffe, baboons, impalas and many hippos, plus one huge male elephant very close. It was a pretty nice introduction to the incredible wildlife that Africa has and the team is looking forward to seeing more tomorrow.

We wrapped up the evening relaxing at our new accommodations, The Plantation Lodge.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and the Safari crew

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

What an exciting first day on safari portion of Kilimanjaro expedition. Great pictures of you 6, even with giant bull elephant so close. Without my first hand knowledge I wouldn’t guess you’d just gotten down from climbing highest point in Africa.

Posted by: Daniel Thompson on 1/31/2018 at 7:27 am

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