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Entries from Expedition Dispatches

Peru Seminar: Young & Team Reach Pisco Base Camp

Greetings loyal RMI Blog Followers,

Today, our team had the privilege of driving up the Quebrada Llanganuco. It is surely one of the most beautiful places in the world. Laguna (Lake) Llanganuco is the centerpiece, a massive alpine lake right along the road, with the most vibrant turquoise color any of our team members have ever seen.  From one of the switchbacks in the road, we met our donkeys and their drivers, and made quick moves up to 15,400’ to Pisco Base Camp. From here, the highest peaks of the cordillera are on display, including Huascaran, Chopicalqui, Chacraaju, the Huandoy massif, and our objective, Pisco Oeste. Tonight’s dinner of Chifa (Peruvian Chinese dish) nourished our bodies as we prepare for a move to our 16,200’ high camp tomorrow.  Stay tuned for more! Our highest summit attempt of the trip is only 2 days away!

Todo es tranquilo. Buenos Noches,

RMI Guides Robby Young, Eric Frank, and your Peru Seminar Crew

PS - Spanish climbing word of the day is “guantes” which means gloves.

Mt. Rainier: Emmons Seminar Completes Week of Training

RMI Guide Nick Hunt and the Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons team completed their week of training today. Yesterday, the team made a summit attempt via the Emmons Glacier route on Mt. Rainier. The team was forced to call 12,800’ their high point due to poor route conditions. Despite not reaching the summit, the team had a great climb complete with steep alpine climbing. All in all, the team enjoyed a great week of training and climbing on the Emmons Glacier.

Alpamayo: Elias and Team Summit!

Original Post | July 20, 2016 - 11:38 a.m. PDT

Hello! This is Elias and the Alpamayo team we are on top! A great crew - some excitement out there. We got to the top here in four hours and a half. We keep beating the time every year! So, the RMI Alpamayo Climb is getting better and better every year! Peter, I, and the guys here are pretty psyched. We’re going to enjoy the views a little longer and then start our descent. We’ll give you a shout later on tonight from camp. We will head for base camp tomorrow. That’s it for now!

Update | July 20, 2016 - 3:16 p.m. PDT

And we did it! Everybody reached the summit of Alpamayo today. We were on the fence about climbing and almost didn’t leave camp. Starting around 11:00 p.m., we experienced unusually strong winds which lasted pretty much all night and all morning. We dragged our feet, and decided to give it a go after a delayed breakfast. With no one on the wall, we could have the luxury of climbing this surreal face without headlamps.

With better conditions than usual, the plethora of of nevé provided pure joy on our steep upward progression. By 19,000’, crystal ice demanded more focus and conscious delivery of every swing with our ice tools. With the incredible training and preparation by the team, we reached the airy summit a mere four and a half hour after departure. We celebrated on the summit and started our descent. Eight 60 meter rappels brought us to the overhanging bergschrund and deposited us back on the glacier, a stones throw to our tents.

Now we’re enjoying dinner at our high camp. Our two porters, Leoncio and Miguel, greeted with a huge smile and bows of soup. We climb hard, and we climb in style. We’ll be checking in from Base Camp tomorrow!

RMI Guide Elias de Andres Martos and team

Elias de Andres Martos & Team on Summit of Alpamayo July 20, 2016

Awesome work guys.  Way to set an impossible bar for next year’s group!

Posted by: Brian P on 7/21/2016 at 9:05 pm

Phenomenal job everyone - well done!!!!!!

Posted by: John Horgan on 7/20/2016 at 4:42 pm

Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Explore the Ngorongoro Crater

From huge elephants to tiny chameleons, the Ngorongoro Crater was a game viewers paradise. We kept to the timeline and made our way to the crater nice and early. So did a bunch of other folk, it was all good, spending time at the visitors center enjoying exhibits and baboons around the truck made waiting for the permitting process to enter the park easy. Happy to do anything to help keep this amazing place well managed. We descended a couple thousand feet into the crater to brisk but clear weather. Herds of zebra, gazelle, wildebeest, cape buffalo, to name a few, were in all directions. Some big game spotting of lions, huge elephants and a couple of rhinos made great additions to our camera rolls. Another delicious lunch in the bush by the hippo pool rounded out the day nicely. We are now back at the Plantation Lodge being pampered one last night. We move on to our final park tomorrow. 

Bye for now,
RMI Guide Mark Tucker

It all sounds amazing and thrilling.  I can’t wait to see all the pictures.

Odette, Taylor’s mom

Posted by: Odette Hankins on 7/20/2016 at 1:48 pm

Mt. Rainier: July 20th Five Day Summit Climb - Summit!

The Five Day Summit Climb Team Led by RMI Guide Sid Pattison reached the Summit of Mt. Rainier today.  The team has enjoyed two days on the mountain and this morning climb into clear skies, winds of 20 - 25 mph and cool temperatures. The team has started their descent and are en route to Camp Muir.

Congratulations to today’s team!

BIG congratulations to Frankie and of course, to the rest of the team who successfully summited Rainier! This was no easy feat, enjoy the feeling of satisfaction (and huge meal/s) following this physical (and mental) achievement!


Posted by: Tina on 7/20/2016 at 5:12 pm

Way to go Tina!!!!! We knew you could do it. 

Congratulations to Eddie and Natalie too.

Thank you to all of the guides and the rest of the crew.

Love Charlie, Nathan and Sierra

Posted by: Charles Ruggiero on 7/20/2016 at 9:45 am

Mt. Rainier: July 20th Summit!

The Four Day Summit Climb led by RMI Guide Pete Van Deventer reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning. Pete reported cold, clear skies with winds at about 25 mph, and a very nice day to climb. The team has started their descent and is en route back to Camp Muir.

Congratulations to today’s team!

Way to absolutely go Dani & Eric!!!!  So very proud of you.

Be safe!!!  We love you :)

Posted by: Heidi & Ian on 7/22/2016 at 6:02 am

Mt. Elbrus: Justman & Team Enjoy First Day on the Mountain

We have officially made camp up at 12,500 feet on Mount Elbrus. Today the team woke early and grabbed all our gear and headed up the mountain. Arriving early we decided to continue up to 13,500 to acclimatize. The team is now back at camp resting and enjoying our first day on the mountain.

RMI Guide JJ Justman

On The Map

Hey Bill & Kevin! Looks a little chilly up there. Nothing like the 90+ weather in Minnesota. Stay safe everyone!

Posted by: Kris Westberg on 7/20/2016 at 4:05 pm

Peru Seminar: Young & Team Return to Huaraz and Prepare for Next Peak

Greetings from Huaraz!

The ESS-Peru team is back in the bustling city of Huaraz after a wonderful week in the Ishinca Valley.  Perfect climbing weather allowed for successful summits of both Nevada Ishinca (18,143’) and Urus Este (17,600’).  After a wonderful breakfast of eggs and bacon (at 14,200’!), we made quick work of our descent out of the valley this morning. Town life brought more great eating, shopping, and resting here at the Hotel Andino, all in preparation for our next objective, Pisco Oeste.  Tomorrow morning we depart Huaraz for the stunning Quebrada Llanganuco (Llanganuco Valley) and make our move to Pisco Base Camp at 15,400’.  Our well acclimatized bodies should take to this altitude well as we set our sights on Pisco, our highest objective of the trip at 18,741’.  We’ll check in again tomorrow evening from our perch in the Llanganuco.  For now, enjoy the “best of” from Robby and Eric’s cellphone photo galleries.

Buenos Noches,

RMI Guides Robby Young, Eric Frank, and the ESS-Peru Team

P.S.  The Spanish climbing term of the day is “tocino”, which means bacon.

Alpamayo: Elias & Team Reach High Camp

Buenas tardes from High Camp of Alpamayo! We arrived one hour ago and are currently resting and making water and dinner. The word out is that we might go for it tonight! Everyone did a terrific job getting to here, and this year is no joke, as the bergschrund to gain the col (to then drop to the northside of the mountain) is as broken and steep as l have ever seen it. Climbing 200 meters of steep, broken glacial ice with heavy packs at 17,000 feet is a task, but now that’s behind us. Now we have the joy of straight up 70-degree ice, on one of the most beautiful runnels in the world, with no packs, lays ahead. It is beautiful up here, folks, we just can’t get enough.

Stay tuned,
RMI Guide Elías de Andres Martos and team

Hi to all the expedition members, Martín is following and suporting Elias from Spain!!!!
Take care and enjoy!!!!!! good luck

Posted by: Martín de Andrés on 7/20/2016 at 12:36 pm

WOW!  You guys are killing it. Sounds like a strong group.
Staying close to my phone hoping David wins a Summit Call!!

Posted by: Katrina Stainton on 7/20/2016 at 10:53 am

Mt. Elbrus: Grom & Team Tour St. Petersburg

Well we had a really nice final day in Russia. We began the day meeting with our tour guide, Illana, and headed out on a quick tour of the city. We stopped off at St. Nicholas Church, stopped by the grand St. Isaac’s Cathedral and made our way to the famous Heritage Museum. Not having a ton of time to see the thousands of exhibits so we did and express trip to see the highlights, which included a few paintings and sculptures by Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt, and other great artists. It was pretty amazing to see so much art in one place and everyone enjoyed the brief visit.
We took a short break before meeting back up with our tour guide for an evening canal tour via boat of this historical city, which was a great way to wrap up a wonderful trip.
That’s all for this trip! The team heads home tomorrow. Thanks for following us.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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