RMI Expeditions Blog
The Four Day Summit Climb August 20 - 23, 2016 led by RMI Guides Brent Okita and Pete Van Deventer were approaching the summit of Mt. Rainier just before 7 am. Pete reported that it is a gorgeous day with 10 mph winds and chilly temperatures. The teams will enjoy the views and take some photos before starting their descent.
Congratulations to today’s Summit Climb teams!
By three this morning, my team of prospective Kili climbers was all present and accounted for on the fringes of Arusha, Tanzania. Eleven of us spent the day getting ready for a week on the move. As is normal with my groups, the team stifled yawns and feigned great interest as I conducted our introductory meeting after a fine Dik Dik Hotel breakfast. They claimed “jet lag” was the culprit rather than my rambling on. Possibly. We’re a good ten hours removed from some west coast US homes now.
After the briefing, it was time for personal equipment checks and packing for an early departure. This left a good chunk of the afternoon for the gang to relax, to walk the garden-like grounds of the hotel, and to periodically climb the water tower to see if Kilimanjaro was out. She was, by evening… faintly… and floating like a cloud in the distance. As we organized, the local guides and kitchen staff had the much bigger job of packing the food and gear for the trip. It was impressive as always to see lead guide Freddy Kilewo out there making order of the chaos. He has about fifty people to plan for, between porters, camp staff, clients and guides. He makes it all look easy.
We’ll begin walking the Machame route tomorrow and coming to grips with this challenge that many have been dreaming and scheming about for years. But this evening it is time to enjoy a send-off feast and a last night in a bed… even with jet lag, we all know it is a good deal.
Dave Hahn and Team
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Amazing! I’ve been reading each day, and am so proud of my sis and her courage and strength. There are lots of good wishes and high fives coming from Colorado. Keep on keepin on-you’re an inspiration. Ninakupenda xo
Posted by: Susan Finzel-Aldred (Deborah's sister) on 8/25/2016 at 8:48 pm
Love you so much Mary! You are incredible and I hope you and all of your team have a great and safe trip.
Posted by: Shawnee on 8/24/2016 at 4:27 pm
August 22, 2016
The Four Day Summit Climb led by RMI Guide Casey Grom and Robby Young turned at 13,800’ due to high winds and route conditions. The team has has started their descent and are en route back to Camp Muir.
Congratulations to today’s team!
What an effort to reach top! Casey, Robby and all others are true heroes to attempt summit under very incremental weather. Hats off!!
Posted by: Ujjal B on 8/24/2016 at 4:24 pm
August 21, 2016
RMI Guide JJ Justman called at 7:05 a.m. The Mt. Rainier Summit Climb teams were beginning their descent from the crater rim! The weather on the summit was a bit windy but clear skies made for nice views in every direction.
Congratulations to today’s summit climbers!
Unbelievable experience! Great job by all the climbers!
Posted by: Scott on 8/22/2016 at 8:14 am
You all rock. Enjoy the view, savor the accomplishment.
Posted by: Ken on 8/21/2016 at 2:58 pm
August 20, 2016
Our Four Day Summit Climb teams for August 17 - 20 reached the summit of Mt. Rainier early this morning. The teams enjoyed beautiful weather with clear skies and a lots of bright moon light. After spending time in the crater, they started their descent. As of 7:00 am PT, RMI Guides Elias de Andres Martos and Mike King reported that they were descending Disappointment Cleaver. We look forward to greeting the teams at BaseCamp this afternoon.
Congratulations to today Summit Climbers!
Great Job Matt H. and the rest of the team!
Posted by: Joe Hackett on 8/20/2016 at 7:39 am
We packed up Pisco Base Camp this morning and headed back to the trail head. Everyone is ready for some solid rest and is welcoming the return to civilization, but it’s been a fun couple weeks of climbing. The views we’ve seen and the adventures we’ve shared are going to stick with the team for a while.
Tonight we celebrate a successful trip and pack our bags one last time. We’ll be heading out to catch planes back home tomorrow evening.
Thanks for following along!
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What an adventure…I’ve enjoyed the free ride! Wonder where this group of climbers will head to next!
Posted by: Judy Mileto on 8/20/2016 at 5:42 pm
Daybreak and moonset at Kikoti were just as wonderful as sunset had been yesterday evening. The team enjoyed a quiet and excellent breakfast before hitting the road at 8 AM. We were right back onto the rough dirt tracks of Tarangire National Park. There was plenty of great exploring over the following four hours… Lots more elephants, zebras, giraffes, vultures and eagles. We scanned gullies and great plains, looked high and low. No more big cats, but we all figured it was ok to save some things for our next safari. This one wrapped up at noon as we started eastward on the road back toward Arusha. We made one stop at the cultural heritage center on Arusha’s outskirts. Everybody was getting more and more “time conscious” though -as is natural with an international flight looming. We got back to the quiet grounds of the Dik Dik in time for some repacking and freshening up. Then we enjoyed a final -excellent- dinner together. The ride to the airport began just after sunset and the team cheered to see Kilimanjaro’s 19,000 ft heights glowing above a few low clouds. It has been an exciting couple of weeks in Africa.
By now the gang is on the wing, homeward bound. I’ll hang out for another round of Kili climbing and looking for cats. Thanks for keeping tabs on us.
RMI Guide Dave Hahn
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August 19, 2016
Our Elbrus Northside trip concluded in one of my favorite towns to visit in Europe, St. Petersburg. Finally sleeping in to a leisurely hour, we met our tour guide and bus at 10 am and departed on a circuitous path through the history filled city to see the sites. St. Petersburg is home to some of the more stunning cathedrals in Russia, and those were a primary focus of the tour, passing by the Church of our Savior on the Spilled Blood, St. Nicholas’ Cathedral (a cathedral dedicated to the Saint of travel and maritime navigation, which is of huge significance in a city founded to be the maritime capitol of Russia, and the home of it’s navy), and St. Issac’s Cathedral. The massive scale of St. Issac’s is something to behold, and on one side, its huge columns still bare the scars left from mortar and artillery shells fired at the city during its 600-day siege in World War II. We also passed the warship that fired the symbolic first shot that began the Bolshevik takeover of Russia’s government, and found ourselves finally at the Hermitage.
The Hermitage is comprised of the former winter palace of the Romanov dynasty, as well as several buildings that were added on later by different emperors and empresses, and is home to an art collection in excess of 2.7 million pieces. Our guide spent an hour taking us through the buildings, pointing out some highlights, a Michelangelo, two paintings by DaVinci, and several by Rembrandt. After the hour, our tour guide released us to wander through the stunning rooms ourselves at our own pace. That evening we regrouped for a canal boat tour, beginning on the river Nevski, which runs through the heart of St. Petersburg. Unfortunately, the days of recent rain (many of which we had experienced!), had swollen the rivers and canals, so that the boat was unable to make its way through the usual circuit of canals that run through the heart of the city, as the passages under the bridges were too low, but we still were able to see the summer gardens and several more palaces from the unique perspective of the canal.
That led us to our final dinner as a group. The Jerome presented the perfect destination, and when the chef came out to show us the special — a beautifully marbled cut of local prime rib weighing almost a kg, everyone was sold. Delicious local beef, and several bottles of Spanish Rioja provided the perfect ending celebration to a really special trip that everyone enjoyed. We were sad to part ways the following morning, some of us very early, for flights back to the US. This was a special group of climbers to work with, and JM and I would like to thank everyone for their hard work and incredible perseverance and positive attitudes. We look forward to running into everyone in the mountains again soon, and thanks to all who followed along on our adventure!
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August 19, 2016
Posted by: Nick Hunt
The Expedition Skill Seminar - Paradise met in Ashford on Sunday to being their week of training. After a full day on the grounds of Rainier BaseCamp getting ready for their trip, they left early the following morning to begin their climb. The weather was beautiful and the team spent their days training on the glacier of Mt. Rainier. Yesterday the team ascend to Camp Muir where they spent the night. With an alpine start they left Camp Muir to make their summit attempt. The team enjoyed the views from the top of Mt. Rainier with clear skies and light winds. Nick and team will return to Camp Muir to re-pack their gear and make their final descent to Paradise. Congratulations to the Paradise Seminar Team!
August 19, 2016
Posted by: Brent Okita
RMI Guide Brent Okita and the Four Day Summit Climb August 16-19 team checked in at 6:50 am from the summit of Mt. Rainier. Brent reported a very nice day with 10 mph winds. They were a bit chilly waiting for the sun to hit them during their ascent but they know the rest of the day is going to be really warm. They will return to Camp Muir and then continue to Paradise and Rainier BaseCamp.
Congratulations to today Summit Climb team!
Sending love and hugs . . . You are all amazing!!
Posted by: Victoria Hall on 8/19/2016 at 1:09 pm
Can’t wait to hear about this!!!
Posted by: Konett on 8/19/2016 at 1:08 pm