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RMI Expeditions Blog


Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team at Karanga Camp

We’ve put the bad weather behind us -and it really wasn’t all that bad.  Morning at Barranco Camp was just perfect: cool dry air with no clouds above or below.  There was still the ever present layer of smog/smoke down a few thousand feet below us, obscuring details, but otherwise not bothering anyone.  We took off for the Great Barranco Wall a little before 9 AM and were soon coming to grips with its rocky ledges.  The wall can make folks nervous since it appears to be plenty steep from below, but our team dealt admirably with any jitters and got to work moving uphill.  We covered almost a thousand vertical feet in a little less than two hours and came out on a flat “summit” with amazing views of Kibo looming another vertical mile above.  The glaciers sparkled in the morning light, looking impossibly steep between great rock faces.  We traversed a few more valleys to reach Karanga Camp just after 1 PM.  It was then an easy afternoon of resting and eating and staring at spectacular scenery.  We’re spending the night at 13,160 ft.  There is no moon, but there are a million stars to silhouette the great bulk of Kibo. 

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

I’ll bet the views are tremendous! You’re almost there!!

Love

Jim

Posted by: Jim Reid on 9/22/2017 at 7:01 pm


Mt. Shuksan: Nelson & Team Reach the Base of the Pyramid

The Mt. Shuksan Seminar, led by Chase Nelson, checked in last night and let us know that they made their summit attempt today. The team reached the base of the pyramid and conditions were too icy to continue so they turned back. However, they are excited about what they did accomplish and they will make their way off the mountain today.

RMI Guide Chase Nelson

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Mt. Rainier: Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir Makes Summit Attempt

The Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir led by RMI Guides Andy Bond and Mike King made their summit attempt today.  After spending several days training at Camp Muir, the Seminar Team left Camp Muir en route to the summit.  The recent storm left several feet of snow in places.  The guides broke trail and continually assessed the route and weather conditions.  After reaching 12,600’ the team decided to turn around and head back Camp Muir due to deteriorating weather.  They will spend their last night at Camp Muir.  Tomorrow, they will complete their program and return to Rainier BaseCamp in Ashford.

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

How can we track our kids while they’re climbing MT Rainier? Our 2 daughters - Shauna and Kerry Manion are with John Marquart and Tiffany Marquart as part of a group of 12 people guided with Sherpa’s. They told us there was a link to follow them on the trip. They arrived on 9/21 but I think they were in training today and starting the climb tomorrow on 9/23. Can you give me any information? Are they on one of your expeditions?

Posted by: Joanne Manion on 9/22/2017 at 4:57 pm


Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Set New Altitude Records

We got a few more rain showers in the night at Shira, but the dawn was sparkly, cold and clear.  Kibo had a dusting of new snow to dress up the ice fields, rock walls and hanging glaciers.  Out to the West, Mt Meru could be seen poking through the endless cloud blanket below our camp.  At 8 AM we got walking again through the high desert vegetation.  Our time in the sun turned out to be short lived as the clouds enveloped us once more.  It began to look as though we might get pretty wet at one point close to noon.  We put on rain jackets -and endured at least 2.5 minutes of light precipitation before things got better -against all odds.  We reached 15,200 ft -our high point for the day, at the Lava Tower.  This represented a new altitude record for Olga, Pawel, Lynn, Joe, Dereesa, April, Steve and Colin.  Only Kathleen and Patrick had been higher.  We rested for a bit and then got moving down toward the Barranco Valley.  The trail was delightfully quiet on what can be a very busy climbing route.  We seemed to have the place to ourselves.  Dropping 2000 vertical feet, we came into chirping birds and exotic plants -the magical setting for Barranco Camp.  We had some hints of the great rock walls of Kibo above, but the clouds never let up enough to reveal the big views.  The team was surprised and enchanted by a rollicking singing and dancing performance by our entire fifty man staff as we came into camp.  This was our longest day so far, nearly seven hours on the trail, but by dinner the gang seemed to have recovered nicely and spirits were high for taking on the Great Barranco Wall in the morning. 

Best Regards
RMI Guides Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Love seeing the pictures and reading about the group’s adventures!  Go Kathleen!  I’m with you in spirit, every step of the way!

Posted by: Steph M. on 9/22/2017 at 11:00 am

Amazing journey you are on. We can’t wait to see your daily story. Such beautiful scenery delightful experiences.
Mom and Dad

Posted by: Sheila and Jim on 9/22/2017 at 8:41 am


Shuksan: Nelson & the Expeditions Skills Seminar Check in

This is Chase and team checking in from the Sulphide Glacier! After three days of almost constant snowfall we finally enjoyed a bit of a break in the weather and even had a few hours of sun. About a foot of snow has fallen since our arrival but the training has continued as planned. Tomorrow we’re going to venture higher up towards the pyramid and see if conditions are suitable for a summit attempt. We’ll check in tomorrow afternoon!

RMI Guide Chase Nelson

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Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Arrive at Shira Camp

The sprinkles began today at noon.  The full-on rain came at 1 PM, but by then we were snug in our new camp at Shira 12,600 ft.  The day had begun clear for us down at Machame, and we were treated to our first good views of Kibo, Kilimanjaro’s central peak.  We set out from camp at 8 AM and got walking up steeply rising rocky steps in a forest of giant heather.  The sun was on us -but only for about a half hour before clouds came over.  We kept working uphill, eventually in fog and a little murk.  The day involved a number of rock steps that required a good handhold or two to negotiate.  We were wearing rain jackets by the time we turned a corner onto the Shira Plateau.  We actually finished by walking several hundred feet downhill to reach camp.  The rain didn’t let up until after dark, but it just made it a little easier to stay inside and rest.  We still gathered in our nice and dry dining dome tent for meals and tea time and to share climbing stories.  By the end of dinner, the sky was back to stars and planets and the Milky Way.  We’ll hope the moisture takes a break. 

Best Regards
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Best of luck to Pat and Lynn and the rest of the team for a safe and fun climb ! 

-Mike

Posted by: Mike Sowa on 9/21/2017 at 10:03 am

It’s great to wake up and see how the day has gone for the team! Hope there are clear skys the next few days. Sending lots of love to Colin and Steve <3

-Jacqs

Posted by: Jacquelynn on 9/21/2017 at 8:08 am


Mountaineering Training | Building a Training Community

There are few elite athletes in the world who train alone. They have a community of other athletes and coaches that are there alongside them for much of their training. It’s difficult to quantify the motivational role that that community provides, but needless to say, it is a huge part of athletes’ success. How often after a big event do we hear someone thank their coaches, their partners, and their teammates. Whether it’s a teammate suffering alongside you or a coach challenging you to do one more, we train better when we have a community.

Many of us don’t though. Whether a result of where we live, the hours of the day that are available for us to train, not knowing any like-minded athletes that are working towards similar goals, many of us train in a vacuum relying solely on the motivation that we can conjure up. That motivation for most of us is incredible. Year after year, we climb with thousands of climbers who have performed monumental feats of training with only a voice in the back of their head as motivation and that is inspirational. Could it be easier though, could it be more effective? Absolutely.

The interconnectedness of our lives with the Internet can be a really strong tool. While we might not have a training partner physically there with us, we can see what they’ve done, look at their stats, maps, and efforts, and use that to motivate and challenge ourselves. When we post that back to the community, our effort can serve as someone else’s motivation, and as a group, we all train harder, smarter, better, and show up fitter and ready to climb. 

As an attempt towards creating this sort of community around us as climbers, we’ve created a club on Strava that we invite everyone to join. You can find it at https://www.strava.com/clubs/rmiexpeditions. Post your workouts, peruse those of others to gain inspiration, and have discussions about training plans and ideas. We accomplish some amazing feats, and we also all go through dark days in our training when things don’t seem to be going right. Let’s let this community strengthen us. As such, let’s keep our conversations positive and constructive. For some, it may be intimidating to post their workout in an open environment like this, but realize that inspiration from your workout may be just what someone else needs to take a step up in their training.

Get motivated, have some fun, and enjoy some friendly challenges. We’re excited to see what everyone is up to!
_____
Questions? Comments? Check out the RMIExpeditions Club on Strava and share your thoughts there or here, on the RMI Blog!

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Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Arrive in First Camp

At exactly 8 AM -the targeted departure time- we left the Arumeru River Lodge and drove East.  We did some people watching from our bus as we cruised the 90 minutes to the Machame Gate of Kilimanjaro National Park.  That had to suffice since we had no views of the mountain.  It was a solid carpet of cloud making things a bit gray, but we focused on the close-in views as we drove through a few changing vegetation levels getting to the 6,000foott elevation of the gate.  As usual, it took a bit of time getting checked in and registered with the Park, but we finally got to the good part -the walking- by 10:50 AM.  We set out in a big forest of moss covered trees.  The trail was pleasantly dry and fine for walking -since I’d warned the team that it would be slimy and muddy.  We gained elevation steadily as the hours went by.  The team did admirably and walked well, but all were quite impressed with porters zipping by at twice our speed with heavy loads balanced on their heads.  The gang was also impressed to come into a fully built, comfortable camp in the giant heather at 10,000 ft.  Our local staff of fifty porters, camp builders, cooks and guides had been busy.  We made it up in five hours and twenty minutes, surely a new world’s record, which we celebrated with afternoon tea and then a dinner and story-telling session in our dining tent.  There were many comments of surprise that Tosha, our head cook, could have produced such a great meal, so quickly, so far up a volcano.
Rain sprinkles began intermittently just after we reached camp but of course that didn’t bother anybody.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

Great Job!  Go April!

Posted by: Kevin Ellis on 9/21/2017 at 6:46 pm


Kilimanjaro: Hahn & Team Getting Going

Our Kilimanjaro team of ten climbers and one guide showed up ready to get ready this morning.  We met at 9 AM to introduce ourselves, and to review strategies, itineraries, policies.  In short order, we’d completed equipment checks, weigh-ins for loaded bags, and general preparations for hitting the trail.  This left team members with plenty of time for relaxing away the afternoon and chipping away at the evil jet lag.  Most ended up wandering the park-like grounds of our hotel and checking out the wildlife.  There were dik diks aplenty -the smallest of the antelope family.  There were velvet monkeys and small gangs of mongooses.  Occasionally we’d venture up the hotel’s Kilimanjaro observation tower, but the mountain never showed itself on this otherwise cloud free, blue sky day.  Too much haze and smoke toward the horizons.  We had a quiet and fine dinner and turned in excited for the coming day.  We get to walk uphill in a beautiful national park tomorrow. 

Best regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Lynn and Patrick, wonderful to be able to follow your progress each day, we are all excited for you ..... love from all of us xxx

Posted by: Robert and Jane Kilroy on 9/20/2017 at 12:15 pm

It’s exciting to see you begin this wonderful journey! We’re looking forward to your progress each day. This is a great adventure!
Jim and Travis

Posted by: Jim Reid on 9/19/2017 at 7:48 pm


Mt. Rainier: Teams Unable to Summit Due to Stormy Weather

The Mt. Rainier Summit Climb team, led by Brent Okita and Jess Matthews, called from Camp Muir. High winds, blowing snow and poor visibility kept the team at Camp Muir. The team began their descent at 8:45 a.m. and will be back to Rainier Basecamp around 1:00 this afternoon.

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