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Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Back in Talkeetna!

Saturday, July 6th, 2013 at 1:50 a.m. PST
We made it!
We stomped a runway.
Ate breakfast.
Went like Vikings to raid a cache (unsuccessfully).
Made two hours of quesadillas.
Packed up camp for incoming airplane.
Listened as incoming airplane went away.
Made camp again.
Made dinner.
Packed up camp as planes came back.
Flew back to civilization!!
Welcome home!

RMI Guides Mike Haugen, Mike Uchal, Katie Bono and the RMI Summit Team 6

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Thank you RMI, Mike and team for keeping everyone safe and heading in the right direction! Congratulations to all! Have safe journeys home. Steve, I can’t wait to see you!

Posted by: Tania on 7/6/2013 at 3:53 pm

I spoke to Quinn early this morning when you made it down and he called again today. Thank you Mike and the team for taking great care of our loved ones. Have a great rest of the climbing season and God speed.

Posted by: George Landers on 7/6/2013 at 1:37 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Still Chillin at Basecamp

Thursday, July 4, 2013
It has been like a sunny beach vacation…except if it were sunny we would have flown far away from this particular snowy beach days ago. The snow keeps coming a bit harder and the forecast says through Sunday now. Could be worse; we have plenty of food, fuel, and great conversations!
RMI Guide Mike Uchal made almost five hours worth of pancakes in a continuous stream for most of the camp. We have a small backlog of climbers around us. There are not many new climbers in basecamp since the weather has prohibited much movement on the mountain from any of the different camps.

RMI Mt. McKinley Summit Team 6

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Hopeful for your getaway very soon!  Keep us posted.  Love, Mom and Dad Haugen

Posted by: Cindy Haugen on 7/6/2013 at 6:15 am

Missing you more every day. Good to hear your spirits are ok.  Can’t wait to hear that planes can make it in.  Got 3 holes in one today. Hug, mom and the guys. Ps did you put smiley faces on the pancakes?

Posted by: KAC on 7/5/2013 at 9:17 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team - Ground Hog’s Day

Wednesday, July 3, 2013
We woke up today to more of the same conditions at McKinley Basecamp. At least with these conditions, there is no waiting around to see if we are going to fly. There is always tomorrow!
We took a walk down to the lower airstrip to stretch our legs a bit.
With plenty of food and gas, at least we are eating well! The morale is still good and the team is hanging in strong while missing our loved ones (and real food).

RMI Mt. McKinley Summit Team 6

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Happy 4th of July To Cindee and her team! Wishing you all a safe and restful return, beers and tacos waiting for you when you get back to SF:)

Posted by: Jennifer on 7/4/2013 at 10:55 pm

The other night I had a warm peanut butter pop tart with a scoop of ice cream and some chocolate syrup.  I feel sure that had pop tarts been included on this expedition, you guys would not still be snowed in.

Posted by: Lisa Mackey on 7/4/2013 at 7:01 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Remain at Basecamp

Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Still here in base camp in case you were wondering. It is snowing with poor visibility. There were some “sucker holes” in the clouds that gave us some false hope at midday today.
We did get out and get some exercise today. Everyone in camp that is waiting to fly got on their skis/snowshoes and stomped down a runway in the snow. We all took it quite seriously since we want the airstrip to be ready when the weather is good enough to fly!
Everyone is happy and healthy and ready to be off the mountain. Cross your fingers!

RMI Mt. McKinley Summit Team 6

P.S. Lance wants his girls to know he loves them and will be home soon.
P.S.S. Steve will call Tania, mom and dad, & Bill and Lisa as soon as he is off the mountain.

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There is an insane amount of cold diet coke in the fridge. Just saying. Jack and I loveyou, Quinn!!!

Posted by: Liz & Jack on 7/3/2013 at 7:27 pm

Steve and Grasshopper,
Congratulations on achieving the summit! So happy you were able to persevere through. Thinking of you this holiday, stay safe. Working on sending clear weather your way:)

Posted by: Robin Biedrzycki on 7/3/2013 at 6:51 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Continue to Wait at Basecamp

July 1, 2013
We are still here. And by here, I mean McKinley Basecamp airstrip in a snowstorm. I am usually an optimist in these types of situations, but the forecast is for days of the muck.

In order to improve international relations, we have adopted two Russian climbers that reached the summit the same day we did and are stuck with us. Andre and Igor pretend to like our jokes and our cooking so we will keep them awhile!

I told the group we were making them Vietnamese Pho for dinner. Really it was Ramen with some dehydrated vegetables. Although they knew what it was, they put some Sriracha hot sauce in it and humored me!

RMI Summit Team 6

P.S. Cindee says Happy Birthday Roger!

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At Itasca. Missing you. Can’t wait to talk.


Dad, Mom and David

Posted by: Mike on 7/3/2013 at 11:49 am

Oh dear.  Stuck for days and no pop tarts?

Posted by: Lisa Mackey on 7/2/2013 at 11:44 am

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Waiting for Flight to Talkeetna

Sunday, June 30, 2013
After waking up at 2 in the morning and making a massive push to get to the landing strip, we are stuck in freezing rain with no hope for a flight today.

Peter- Cannot wait to see my loving wife and daughter Maggie. Had a great trip!

Grasshopper- Dream realized. Love to everyone!

Cindy- Thanks for all of the great comments!  Maija, the Internet code is Zootrubie :)

Sandra- Cant wait for Thanksgiving in Hawaii!

Quinn- Save my seat on the couch. Give everyone a hug! See you all soon.

Lance- Cannot wait to see my three girls! Kisses to all.

Steve- To Bill and Lisa, where are the gluten free Pop Tarts? Tania, can’t wait to see you as soon as possible my darling!

Uchal- family : I love you all so much and thank you for the understanding and support. I can’t wait to see everyone when I get back. I have decided to leave NC this winter so I can spend more time in Roc City. Keep the couches open - I am coming home.

Katie- To Mom and Dad, love you and miss you.  See you soon!

Haugen- Love you Amber, Paris, Paige, Brigitte, Jack, Alex! I love you mom and dad and I for sure owe you a Halibut dinner!! Thank you all for the blog comments!

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Congratulations everyone especially Grasshopper!! So amazing to realise your dream! xxx

Posted by: Kate on 7/1/2013 at 9:03 pm

cannot wait to see lance either!!!!fridge is full. Brits are doing great at Tour de France.Come back quick to watch!xxxxxx

Posted by: elisabeth on 7/1/2013 at 7:12 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team To Thicker Air

Saturday, June 29th, 2013
After a good sleep, we woke up and started packing. The goal for the day was to get as low and as far as possible to set us up for flying off the mountain tomorrow. The crux of the walk out is timing the walk out on the lower Kahiltna Glacier. We have to walk across this part while the snow bridges over the crevasses are frozen. This means a late night/early morning walk to the air strip. We made it all the way to 11k Camp so we are set up to walk the glacier at the right time…as long as we only sleep for two hours!
Wish us luck and good weather so we can fly tomorrow!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and the RMI Summit Team 6

P.S. Grasshopper wants to thank Annie and Rose for the support and sacrifices!

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big concern from little calgarians: is there any chocolate left??

Posted by: elisabeth on 6/30/2013 at 4:35 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Summit!

Friday, June 28th, 2013
Summit Team 6 finally hit the summit! Second time is a charm.

We left camp around 8:45 this morning with perfect weather. As we got higher, Denali decided to challenge us again; this time with some wind. The wind was blowing very hard as we approached the summit ridge. We were all bundled up ready to get pummeled by wind on the ridge, but the ridge actually blocked the wind making the summit really nice! We stayed on top for quite some time before we headed back down into the wind for a safe descent back to 17,000 feet.

Time to get some well-deserved sleep!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and RMI Summit Team 6

RMI Guide Mike Haugen calls from the Mount McKinley summit.

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Congratulations, Quinn, and the rest of the team!!! We’re so proud of you, what an amazing achievement! Have a happy and safe descent, you’re in our thoughts!

Posted by: Lauren & Adam on 6/30/2013 at 8:45 pm

Awesome job by everyone. Quinn, we knew you would summit no matter what it took. Have a safe 2nd half and look foreword to seeing you home soon. Love from Mom & Dad.

Posted by: George on 6/30/2013 at 12:34 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen’s Team Resting and Hoping

Thursday, June 27th, 2013
After our almost summit yesterday, we took today to rest up for another hopeful shot tomorrow. RMI Summit Team 6 is really a great group of folks. We got sooooo close to the summit yesterday and got shut down by terrible weather. We did not hear any complaining or what ifs… instead we heard about what an adventure the day was and started to plan for another attempt.

Keep your fingers crossed, say a prayer, or do some kind of a weather dance to help us get some good weather and another chance to summit tomorrow!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen and Summit Team 6

On The Map

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You’ve got this!  No matter what happens (and I m dancing like crazy here), this is an incredible adventure.  We are so impressed back here in the flatlands. Stay warm.  Thinking of you all, all the time. KAC.

Posted by: Kconstantine on 6/28/2013 at 9:08 pm

Weather dance has happened!  Climb on crew. . . .knock the beast off!!!!

Posted by: Mtn Mo on 6/28/2013 at 9:07 pm

Mt. McKinley: Haugen & Team Turn Below the Summit

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013
We woke up around 7:30 with clear skies and no winds. We set off towards the summit with all of the crew feeling great. We experienced a little bit of wind and clouds at Denali Pass, but that is pretty normal. The climb was going smoothly and the weather was about as perfect as you can get.  We were about 150 feet below the summit ridge when the clouds came in and blocked out our sun. All of a sudden we heard a crack of thunder and all of the metal around us began to buzz. We hightailed it down to a depression in a feature called the football field where things seemed to be calm. By calm, I mean a whiteout snowstorm came out of nowhere!  We hunkered down and waited to see if things would settle down. When we were certain they would not, we worked our way down the mountain with GPS and some wands that mark the trail. After a fourteen hour climbing day, our whole team is back in camp happy, healthy, and fed having come a few hundred feet short of the summit but without a permanent stutter from electrocution!
Our plan is to rest tomorrow and perhaps give the summit another go in the next few days. We will see.


RMI McKinley Summit Team 6

RMI Guide Mike Haugen calls in from 17 camp after their summit attempt.

On The Map

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I’m shocked (seriously, no pun intended) to hear about the storm. SO close.  You are all truly amazing and great to hear Mike’s voice.  Cheering you on, thinking about you all, KAC.

Posted by: Kconstantine on 6/27/2013 at 8:02 pm

there will be an other opportunity am sure! glad you are all ok .rest well.lots of love to Lance

Posted by: elisabeth on 6/27/2013 at 5:18 pm

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