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Entries from Expedition Dispatches


Mt. Rainier: Four Day Summit Climb Teams on Top!

RMI Guides Kel Rossiter and Mike Uchal led their Four Day Summit Climb teams for July 19 - 22 to the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning. They reported moderate winds and mostly clear skies.

Congratulations to today’s climbers!

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

I did the 4-Day Rainier Climb in 2012 with guides Lindsey Mann and Casey Grom.  They were great guides and provided our team with an enjoyable experience.

This year, I brought eight friends with me to again do the 4-Day Rainier Climb, with RMI Guides Kel Rossiter, Taylor Bickford, and Lucas Haaland.  Again, RMI provided us with 3 more amazing guides.  The climb was awesome and everyone - both guides and clients - had an great time!  It was so much fun!

For those thinking about climbing Rainier, here’s my advice:  use a guide service (RMI has the some of the world’s best climbers as guides, puts a high premium on safety, and is reasonably priced), train & prepare for the climb, listen to your guides, tip your guides well, and have an awesome experience!

Posted by: Kelly Steele on 7/24/2017 at 8:37 pm

Wow. Our guides were out-of-this-world amazing—Mike, Pete and Bryan made sure our group felt comfortable, prepared and were safe throughout the experience. I would, hands down, recommend RMI to ANYONE looking to get into mountaineering.  My family had an incredible experience because of them.  Thank you RMI and a special thank you to Mike, Pete and Bryan for helping us make it to the summit and back!

Posted by: Lindsey Effner on 7/24/2017 at 9:59 am


Alpamayo: Schellens & Team Ascend to Moraine Camp

Good evening from Moraine Camp.
The Alpamayo team woke this morning to lots of coffee and a delicious breakfast, as per usual at Base Camp. After breakfast we spent the morning packing and discussing various gear options. Today was another beautiful sunny day so after we were packed we lounged in the sun and read our books until lunch time. Finally after lunch we decided we aught to do a little work so we shouldered our packs and started the hike to Moraine Camp. Despite it being sunny a slight breeze kept the afternoon hike very comfortable. By late afternoon we were settling in, enjoying the views, and sipping tea.
Tomorrow we will rise early and hit the glacier leading us up to the Col and then High Camp.

Thanks for following along with us,
RMI Guide Geoff Schellens and the Alpamayo team

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Mt. Rainier: Four Day Summit Climb Teams Descend from Crater Rim

The July 18 - 21 Four Day Summit Climb Teams reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning.  RMI Guide Jess Matthews reported 20-25 mph winds and a sunny and beautiful day on the mountain.  At 9:30 am the teams were descending from the crater rim on their return to Camp Muir.
We look forward to seeing the teams at Rainier BaseCamp this afternoon.

Congratulations to today’s Summit Climbers!

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Well done! Congratulations James!! We are all so excited for you!

Posted by: M LeDuke on 7/21/2017 at 11:04 am

Congratulations!  Glad to hear they made it!!

Posted by: Sarah Belter on 7/21/2017 at 9:58 am


Kilimanjaro: Okita & Team Ascend to Shira Plateau

Our five hour trek to the Shira Plateau and our beautiful camp here began steeply out of Machame Camp and was quite relentless for a good three or so hours. Along the way we learned some walking and breathing techniques that will be key to our success on this expedition.
While I was busy coaching the team on these skills, one of our local guides, Peter, did a fantastic job with the pace and allowed us to move easily while still getting to camp at a reasonable hour. In this case, that would be at 1:30, just in time to sit down for the incredible lunch spread prepared by our chef Tosha. How does fried chicken, French fries and a refreshing salad, followed by watermelon sound, especially at 12,570’.
Climbing Kilimanjaro is nothing if not over the top luxury, and I’ll take every last bit of it. Our staff on the mountain, the guide, porters, cooks, waiters etc. allow the team to concentrate on the important matter of acclimatizing and just taking care of ourselves. We’ll need that help to be able to climb this 19,000’ behemoth in a week.
Following lunch we’ve all gone into major relax mode, letting the altitude seep into our bodies and the calories just consumed reenergize us in preparation for a big day getting to Barranco Camp. And of course, we need to be rested for ‘tea time’ in a few minutes.
Yeah, life is tough here in Tanzania, but the team is reaping the benefits of our support crew and everyone is doing really well.
All for now from the Shira Plateau.

RMI Guide Brent Okita

On The Map

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Mt. Elbrus: Gorum & Team Ready for Summit Bid

After a windy night, the team awoke to blue skies and a relatively calm breeze. We spent the first half of the day reviewing skills like rope travel and self arrest. The remainder of the day has been spent relaxing, prepping gear for our summit attempt of Mt. Elbrus tomorrow morning, and watching some very acrobatic birds fly around camp. We are pretty much ready to go, now we just wait and hope for good weather. You’ll hear from us tomorrow!

RMI Guide JM Gorum

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

Wishing Ray, Nikolai and Aleksandr a fun and successful climb to the summit tomorrow. We’re all looking forward to the stories and picture back here at USC. Good luck!! Angela

Posted by: Angela Walker on 7/21/2017 at 7:16 am


Alpamayo: Schellens & Team Take a Well Deserved Rest Day

This morning we woke when the sun hit our tents and proceed to drink lots of coffee with and ate an amazing breakfast of bacon, sausage, and eggs. After breakfast we lounged around base camp reading and napping in the sun. After lunch we went for a short 15 min walk up to Laguna Arhuaycocha, a beautiful alpine lake with blue green water. From here the views of Alpamayo, Artesonraju, and Pucarashta were stunning. We sunned ourselves on warm rocks by the lake and took in the amazing mountains surrounding us. After a while we made our way back to camp to relax a bit more before the sun dipped behind the ridge.
This rest day not only helps us recover after three days on our feet but also helps our body’s acclimatize. Everyone is feeling great and ready to move up hill tomorrow.
Thanks for following along

RMI Guide Geoff Schellens

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Kilimanjaro: Okita & Team Hit the Trail

The team all got to breakfast early this morning allowing us to get a head start on the day. This was nice as we were able to get to the Machame Gate and start our day before a lot of other teams. The National Park Service keeps Kilimanjaro national Park in great shape and it’s been inspiring to see them take a strong stand promoting Leave No Trace policies. Our immaculately maintained trail led us easily thru the rain forests of the lower flanks and to the beginning of the giant heather,which can grow to thirty feet high. All are doing fantastic, especially after fantastic three course dinner our cool Toshi prepared for us.Sleep is tugging at our sleeves pretty hard, so we retired to our tents where this old cowboy is also ready to crash.

Talk with you tomorrow.

RMI Guide Brent Okita & Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Brent - I am always so proud of you.  It is always amazing to see how much you enjoy this chosen profession AND how professionally skilled you are.  You are also quite an inspiration to your siblings.  AND Dr. Carey sends his regards.  You certainly impressed him not only with your expertise but for your being such an intelligent caring person.  Love you - take care - be safe.  mom

Posted by: Marjorie Okita-Johnson on 7/21/2017 at 10:50 am

Brent - I can’t believe you’re on Kilimanjaro!  My buddy Billy and I hiked with you a few years ago and Rainier and we’re going to miss you by one week!!  We leave this weekend for Arusha.  Perhaps we’ll cross paths!

Hope your adventure is going well!

Dennis Welsh

Posted by: Dennis Welsh on 7/20/2017 at 5:39 pm


Mt.Elbrus: Gorum & Team Acclimatize and Enjoy the Mountain

Well well well, another good day up here on Mt. Elbrus. Most of the team woke with the sunrise, which is around 4am. Breakfast wasn’t until 8, so we had some time to kill. Jazzersize (I don’t actually know how to spell that) kept a few folks busy, while others took part in more traditional activities, such as taking photos and wandering aimlessly about the ridge. After breakfast we had a race to see who could get ready the fastest. Everyone tied for first place. This is the dream team, no doubt.

We set off on our journey to the top of Pastahkov rocks at 9:00am. After an hour, we could hear thunder in the distance, and dragged our feet thinking we were going to retreat. Thunder is no match for this team, however, and after some intense positive energy output the clouds dissipated and we continued upwards. Two hundred feet shy of our target, the clouds started to look ominous again. It is hard work trying to change the weather, and we’re going to need that energy for summit day. The best call was to turn around and head back to the hut. We made it to 15,300 feet today, which is perfectly in line with our acclimatization goals. We made it back to the huts ten minutes before it started raining, which is perfectly in line with our goal of not getting wet. Excellent job by everyone today. Rest day coming up tomorrow.

The team sends their best to all back at home!
RMI Guide JM Gorum

On The Map

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Mt. Rainier: Four Day Summit Climb Teams Top Out!

RMI Guides Tyler Jones and Jake Beren led their Four Day Summit Climb July 17 - 20 to the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning.  Tyler reported windy and cold temperatures but good climbing conditions. The teams were starting their descent from the crater rim just before 9 am.

Congratulations to today’ Summit Climb team!

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Alpamayo: Schellens & Team Ascend to Moraine Camp

The Alpamayo team is doing great!  This morning we had a leisurely breakfast and began packing for our carry to Moraine Camp. We waved goodbye to Elias and his team as they started their descent to Casha Pompa and by mid morning we shouldered our packs and began hiking. The trail to Moraine Camp weaves through a boulder field as it ascends towards the glacier above. With blue skies overhead we all found ourselves pausing to taken on the spectacular views of the Cordillera Blanca. Once at Moraine Camp, 16,100 feet, we unload our equipment and relaxed for a bit before starting our descent back to BC. After rolling into base camp we enjoyed some delicious soup and spent the afternoon relaxing, reading, or napping. Tomorrow will be our first true rest day, and despite the fact that everyone is strong and healthy we need it more for acclimatization.
That’s it for now.
Thanks for following along

RMI Guide Geoff Schellens and the Alpamayo team

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