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Entries By alan davis

Mexico Volcanoes: Dale & Team Ready for Ixta Summit Bid

The team is in fine form today as we loaded our heavy packs onto our strong backs and hit the steep trail up from La Joya to Campo Alto Ixta.  We all moved under the hot Mexico sun as a tight unit of perfectly timed rest steps.  A small dog, we later named Ixta, decided that our group is great company and came with us all the way to 15,500 feet.  Now we have our tents up and are treating ourselves to an hour of rest before firing up the stoves and making a hot dinner. We’ll be turning in early because we’ll be back up in the middle night for a climb to the top!

RMI Guide Christina Dale

On The Map

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Thanks for the updates and I am so proud of you guys!  Keep up the great work and enjoy the adventure!

Posted by: Stephanie R on 1/23/2019 at 5:33 am

Mexico Volcanoes: Dale & Team at Ixtaccihuatl Base Camp

This morning we left La Malinche for the Altzomoni Hut at 13,000 feet on Ixta. The team was able to stock up on water and last minute snacks in the town of Amecameca before we begin our two-day attempt on Ixta. We’ve got all of our equipment sorted for our move up to our high camp at 15,000 feet tomorrow.

RMI Guide Grayson Swingle

On The Map

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Mexico Volcanoes: Dale & Team Acclimating Day on La Malinche

Today the team left the lively Zona Rosa district of Mexico City bright and early to make our way to the mountains. A beautiful drive through the Mexican countryside took us up through a cloud layer that blanketed the City to sunny skies above.

Once we arrived at our home for the night, La Malinche, the team began our first big step towards getting our bodies acclimated for the peaks to come by hiking up to 13,700 feet. Here, we got our first views of the surrounding volcanoes including our next objectives Ixta and Orizaba.

Tonight we will enjoy a much deserved authentic Mexican dinner, sleep at 10,000 feet and try to catch a glimpse of the Lunar Eclipse.

RMI Guide Grayson Swingle

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Hope you guys see/saw the lunar eclipse.  The moon was bright and shiny here in Atlanta and I hope it lights your way to the top!  Best wishes and stay strong!

Posted by: Stephanie Renner on 1/21/2019 at 5:32 am

Mexico Volcanoes: Dale & Team Kick off Their Expedition in Mexico City

The team all met yesterday in Mexico City where we took walks during the day and were impressed with the city.  We met for a fun dinner with lots of tacos and laughs.  We all are looking forward to traveling around Mexico, climbing the high mountains, and tasting the best smoked chipotle sauces.

RMI Guide Christina Dale

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What a happy looking group and hope everyone (especially Andy & Mychal!) are fueled up and ready for a fun adventure!  Best wishes and have fun.

Posted by: Stephanie R on 1/20/2019 at 3:16 pm

Eleven RMI Guides complete the AMGA Alpine Skills Course

At the end of this past April, eleven RMI guides came together in Washington to take the AMGA Alpine Skills Course, a prerequisite for the Alpine Guide Course, and a great continuing education opportunity for all of us to remain at the forefront of current guiding techniques. After a winter of far-flung adventures, Dave Hahn, Andy Bond, Mike King, Jenny Konway, Grayson Swingle, Hannah Smith, Gloria Roe, Nick Scott, JT Schmitt, Alan Davis, and myself converged on Ashford. These courses are an important chance for us to refresh our skillset and learn some new tricks from our peers and the instructors from the AMGA.

Snow anchor construction
Lowering and rappelling practice

Over the course of 5 days at Paradise in Mt. Rainier National Park, and on Mt. Erie, outside Anacortes, WA, we reviewed snow anchor construction and multi-pitch techniques for snowy environments, belaying and lowering techniques, short roping and short pitching, and anchor station management. Success in our guiding often lies in not only being able to utilize a number of techniques to manage risk, but in being able to maintain efficiency and timeliness at the same time. As we worked through different transitions, techniques, and scenarios with our peers, we all walked away with a few new tools in our bag and I’m convinced will be better guides for it.

Short roping practice
Belay station management
Evening celebrations

This was a fantastic event for the eleven of us, and many thanks go out to RMI and the AMGA for putting it on. Congrats to Dave Hahn, Andy Bond, Mike King, Jenny Konway, Grayson Swingle, Hannah Smith, Gloria Roe, Nick Scott, JT Schmitt, and Alan Davis for completing the course!

Alex Halliday

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Peru Seminar: Young & Team Celebrate Their Success in Huaraz

Saturday, July 14, 2018 - 4:10 PM PT

Hello world!

We’re back in Huaraz! The team is all safe and sound in the friendly, and bustling, city of Huaraz after a wonderful four days in the Llanganuco Valley. We saw amazing nights skies; we endured unusual Cordillera Blanca weather, and we summited an amazing mountain in Pisco Oeste, at 18,871’.

The stars aligned for us during our last climbing objective here in Peru. For a while, it seemed that the weather wouldn’t cooperate and would prohibit us from climbing to the highest summit of our trip. But with a bit of improvisation, and a little extra hard work by the team, we achieved our goal, climbed in good style, and snuck in Pisco’s summit in the only 12-hour window of good weather the mountains would muster over the past four days. We’re counting our lucky stars back here in the city, and we’re prepping for our last celebratory dinner to share stories, lessons, and reflect on the past two weeks we’ve spent together in one of the most beautiful mountain ranges on Earth. Tonight is our team’s last night to experience some of Peru’s finest cuisine as the recovery stage of our climbing begins. Chances are some folks will indulge in the local favorite, Cuy, a.k.a. Guinea Pig. Don’t worry, we won’t send pictures. Meanwhile, enjoy some photos of our most recent climb! We’re back to sea-level tomorrow as our team begins the long journey home. One more final post tomorrow, before you all see your loved ones once again!

Until then, hasta luego!

RMI Guides Robby Young, Alan Davis, William, and Peru Team “Pisco”

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Peru Seminar: Young & Team Summit Pisco Oeste!

Friday, July 13, 2018 - 8:07 PM PT


Today, around 7:45am, your ESS-Peru Team was standing on top of Pisco Oeste! Due to weather yesterday, we made the climb from Base Camp at 15,200’ rather than moving camp higher on the mountain. The ‘audible’ paid off, and we were lucky to spend most of our 12-hour day of climbing under clear skies! The views from Pisco are famous in the Cordillera Blanca, as you’re surrounded on all sides by some of the highest mountains in the range. We spent a good while on the summit today, just below 19,000’, enjoying our last summit of the trip to its fullest. The climbing was superb to boot. The unsettled weather over the past few days laid down a fresh coat of light snow throughout the range. What a treat it was to break trail above 18,000’! After our climb, most of us settled into our tents all afternoon, recovering from our long day. Tomorrow, the comforts of city living await in Huaraz. We’ll send pics when we arrive! Until then, buenos noches.

RMI Guides Robby Young, Alan Davis, William, and Peru Team ‘Cuy’

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Congrats to everyone on another awesome achievement!

Posted by: Paul M Meese on 7/14/2018 at 3:57 am

Peru Seminar: Young & Team Rest at Base Camp

Thursday, July 12, 2018 - 4:44 PM PT


It’s an incredibly rare event to be held down by weather here in the Cordillera Blanca in the months of July and August. The dry season here is wonderfully tranquil, for the most part, yet today, was a day the mountains were not their warm and welcoming selves. We had originally planned to move to high camp on Pisco today, but threatening clouds, wind, and snow showers kept us out here at Base Camp at 15,200’. Luckily, we’re acclimatized, and Pisco can be easily climbed from here at Base Camp in one day. We’re saving the energy of hauling heavy loads up high, and are going to make a go at it later tonight from Base Camp, if the weather allows, of course. We get really spoiled here with weather here in Peru for the most part, so is certainly out of the ordinary to need to improvise. Despite all that, we’re excited to go climb tonight, we’re well rested, and we just ate steak and French fries at 15,200’. Life is good! We’ll let you know how our climb goes tomorrow! Wish us luck!

Robby, Alan, William, and team Papas Fritas

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Peru Seminar: Young & Team Head Up Pisco Oeste

Wednesday, July 11, 2018 - 6:00PM PT


Our climb of 18,898’ Pisco Oeste has officially begun! We woke up in Huaraz this morning refreshed and ready to ‘tackle our day with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind.’  A beautiful 3-hour drive later, we were in the heart of the stunningly beautiful Quebrada Llanganuco, and made the short 2-hour hike to 15,200’ Pisco Base Camp. It didn’t take long to get camp built, and we even had time to check out the Refugio above camp on the hill. Naps and then a dinner of spiced chicken, rice, potatoes, and fresh pineapple hit the spot. We’re ready to keep this train rolling tomorrow with an anticipated move to 16,200’ moraine Camp. We’re hoping for good weather and continued good health! And as always, we’ll keep you up to date!

RMI Guide Robby, RMI Guide Alan, William and Team

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Peru Seminar: Young & Team Back in Huaraz, Readying for Pisco Oeste

Hello world!

We’re back in the comfy confines of Hotel Andino in Huaraz City! We’re indulging in the excellent cuisine here at the hotel, enjoying some clean clothes, and doing the “climbing gear shuffle” as we unpack and repack for our next adventure. Upcoming, Pisco Oeste, a nearly 19,000’ peak located in the beautiful valley of Llanganuco. We’ve trained, we’ve acclimatized, we’ve climbed hard, and we’ve learned a lot this past week; and we’re ready for the expedition ahead of us! The adventure begins tomorrow with a beautiful drive and a four-hour hike to Pisco Base Camp at 15,500’, before a move to high camp the following day. It’s been a wonderful stretch of climbing here in Peru so far, and we hope our good luck with weather will continue (fingers crossed!). For now, enjoy some photos from our last week in the Ishinca Valley. More to come!

RMI Guides Robby Young, Alan Davis, William, and Peru Team “Cuy”

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