Entries By geoff schellens
June 5, 2016
June 4, 2016 - 11:46 a.m. PDT
The team played a lot of hurry up and wait most of the day in Talkeetna. We put the final touches on packing, weighed in for the flight, and waited for a weather window to get into the Alaska Range. Our window opened right around 5 PM and we snuck into Kahiltna BC just before it socked in again. Once on the glacier we spent a few hours rigging for rope travel and re-packing before we hit the dusty trail. Everyone did a fantastic job and just before 1 AM we set up camp at 7,600’ on the Kahiltna That’s it for now. We’re all really excited to be here.
Thanks for following along,
RMI Guide Geoff Schellens and The UWR team
Hi Ben and Team. Looks beautiful but super cold. Stay warm!! Ben is that you in the yellow coat??! Safe travels.
Posted by: Melinda on 6/7/2016 at 8:28 am
Andrea mou!! Hope you’re having a blast. Pictures looks amazing. Stay warm - miss you!
Posted by: GSD on 6/6/2016 at 6:43 pm
June 3, 2016
June 3, 2016 - 10:54 pm PT
The Upper West Rib team started the day like any reasonable person in Talkeetna would, lots of coffee, eggs and bacon at the Roadhouse. From there we headed down to the K2 Hangar and went through all our gear and got packed up for flying into the Alaska range tomorrow. In the afternoon we had our NPS orientation and put the final touches on gear packing before relaxing a little. It began raining here in town but even the inclement weather couldn’t bring down the stoke in our group. Everyone is extremely excited to get into the Range. Keep your fingers crossed for good fly weather for us tomorrow.
Happy Birthday Ben
Posted by: Susan Moccia on 6/4/2016 at 4:38 am
June 3, 2016
June 2, 2016 - 1:27 pm PT
The 2016 Upper West Rib team met today in Anchorage after months of preparation, training, and anticipation. With the team and all our gear in Alaska we took a shuttle up to Talkeetna, had a great group dinner at Twister Creek, went to bed. Tomorrow is our in town prep day and meeting with the NPS. Thanks everyone for following along as we begin our expedition.
This picture is priceless, Benjamina! Lol. Safe travels, homie!
Posted by: Dizzle on 6/5/2016 at 9:57 am
Looking good guys!!!! Safe trekking. Will be following you every inch of the way from the comfort of my recliner chair
Posted by: Sue Moccia on 6/3/2016 at 7:09 pm
May 30, 2016
Today’s Four Day Summit Climb led by RMI Guides Casey Grom and Geoff Schellens reached the summit of Mt. Rainier around 7:30 am. Casey reported winds up to 30 mph and clear skies. The teams will spend some time on the summit before beginning their descent.
We look forward to seeing the teams in Ashford later today. Congratulations climbers!
Mike O’Hara so proud of you! What an accomplishment! I knew you could do it :)
Posted by: Zayna on 5/31/2016 at 6:36 pm
Pretty sure I caught your headlamps on the cathedral gap at about 1am
Posted by: Jake Olson on 5/30/2016 at 12:03 pm
May 23, 2016
The Mt. Rainier Four Day Summit Climb teams led by RMI Guides Jake Beren and Geoff Schellens reached the summit crater around 7:45 a.m. Jake reported light winds and pleasant conditions. The teams spent about an hour on the summit before beginning their descent just after 9:00 a.m.
We look forward to seeing all of the climbers back in Ashford later today.
March 8, 2016
It’s been a mixed day of weather here on the flanks of Ixta. The group awoke to clear skies and pleasant temps this morning, but an ominous forecast threatened that the good weather would probably not last.
We loaded our packs after breakfast and began climbing toward our high camp at 15,000ft. Slowly the wind began to pick up as we gained altitude until it was blowing 25-30mph when we arrived at camp. It was an easy decision to leave our tents packed and we opted instead to move into the nearby Refugio De Los Cien.
We are currently spread inside the Refugio listening to the wind blow in strong gusts. Every so often someone builds up the courage to venture outside to go to the bathroom but is quickly forced back inside.
We have our fingers crossed for improving weather, but the conditions right now don’t give us much hope for a summit bid tomorrow.
March 7, 2016
This morning we woke up, packed, and loaded into our van without coffee!! We made this bold move knowing that 40 minutes down the road we would be rewarded with perhaps the best breakfast buffet in Mexico. We ate our fill and loaded back in the van, now fully caffeinated, to drive onto Amecameca to resupply on water and fresh food. Here we also met our local guide, Alfreado, and our support team. After an hour we were back in the van winding up the mountain roads to Paso De Cortez and onto the Altzomoni Hut at the foot of Ixta. Our home in the clouds, at close to 13,000’ the Altzomoni Hut is a great step in our overall acclimatization schedule.
Unfortunately the weather is cloudy and windy so we haven’t yet been able to see Ixta; hopefully tomorrow. We are currently enjoying a delicious authentic taco dinner and discussing logistics of our hike to high camp tomorrow. Everyone is doing very well and having fun. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather for us and thanks for following along.
On The Map
March 6, 2016
The Mexican Volcanoes team got an early start this morning, and by 10am we were above the Mexico City fog and enjoying the mountains around us. A two-hour drive brought us to the high altitude resort of Malintzi, a collection of rustic cabins with million dollar views of the valley below.
Towering above Malintzi is the peak, La Malinche at 14,640ft. Recent storms have covered the upper flanks of the mountain with snow and as we hiked uphill this afternoon we noticed more and more snow. Eventually, around 13,300 ft, we felt that we had gone far enough and decided to head downhill.
Back in Malintzi we enjoyed an incredible dinner of carne asada.
Thanks for following along on our adventure.
March 5, 2016
After long journeys from all over the US we finally gathered at our hotel in Mexico City. Excitement and anticipation were high throughout the group as we discussed the upcoming trip. We then made our way through the noise Saturday night streets of Zona Rosa, Mexico City, to an authentic Mexican restaurant called, El Refugio Fonda. After a decadent meal, we picked our way back to the hotel to pack and get some rest before we set off on the first leg of our trip tomorrow. Thanks for following along with us here in Mexico.
RMI Guides Geoff Schellens & Eric Frank
November 24, 2015
Posted by: Geoff Schellens
Ouray, CO is a small mountain town located near the ski resort of Telluride, CO and in the heart of the San Juan mountains. Ouray has become the preeminent destination in the U.S. for ice climbing, and is known throughout the world as well. RMI Guide Geoff Schellens has spent his last five winters climbing and guiding ice in Ouray, and gives his top five reasons to visit the small, exciting mountain town this winter.
1. The Ouray Ice Park: Located two minutes from town, the Ouray ice park is the largest man-made ice park in the world. With over 200 established routes ranging from beginner to difficult ice and mixed climbs and immediate in-town access, the park is the place for any climber to hone their skills. Managed by the Ouray Ice Park staff who turn on nearly 100 showerheads every afternoon to rebuild ice for the next day and keep the park in tip-top shape, this unique playground is free to the public, though donations are much appreciated. The ice park is open seven days a week from mid December to late March.
2. Back Country Ice Climbing: The San Juan Mountains surrounding Ouray are home to many of the best backcountry ice in the US. From roadside multi-pitch climbs on Camp Bird Road to long alpine style ice in Eureka and Telluride, one can find amazing ice and beautiful Rocky Mountain solitude within an hour drive. Famous backcountry routes including Stairway to Heaven, The Ribbon, Skylight, and Bridal Veil Falls are just a few of the sought after classics in the area.
3. The Town of Ouray: This small mountain town has a rich climbing culture. It is not uncommon to see world-class climbers grabbing a pint at the Ourale House or coffee and decadent treat at Mouse’s Chocolate and Coffee following a day on the ice. With over 130 years of history, the town of Ouray is an eclectic blend of new and old. There are a plethora of unique restaurants, coffee shops, and hotels where climbers reconvene with stories from the day’s escapades and plans for tomorrow’s adventure.
4. The Ouray Hot Springs: Located in the heart of town, the Ouray Hot Springs is a public soaking spot not to be missed. Hosting four pools ranging in temperatures from 88º to 106º, the hot springs provide a wonderful way to relax those sore muscles after a day of ice climbing.
5. The Ouray Ice Fest: Typically falling on the second weekend in January, the Ouray Ice Fest is the event of the year. During the day, clinics like ‘Intro to Ice’, ‘Steep Ice Techniques’ and ‘Speed and Efficiency on Ice’ are hosted by world-class athletes and guides. In the evening, slideshows, presentations and events such as the Petzl party are held in town. Don’t be too engrossed to miss the highlight of the weekend: the ice climbing competition. Top climbers from around the world come to test their skill on the difficult competition wall.
For anyone interested in learning to ice climb, or looking to take their skills further, Ouray is the perfect destination. The density of available routes, across the spectrum of difficulty, means that there is something for everyone in Ouray. Join one of our Ice Climbing programs this year, and let Geoff or another of our exceptional guides share the excitement of ice climbing with you!
Geoff Schellens is a senior guide at RMI. An AMGA certified rock guide, Geoff guides exciting mountain adventures around the world for RMI. Geoff will be guiding Ice programs in Ouray this winter, before starting off his summer season leading an expedition on the West Rib of Denali and then on to Alpamayo. Let Geoff share his wealth of ice climbing knowledge with you this winter!