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Entries By leon davis


Alaska Seminar: Leon & Team Fly in to Kahiltna Base Camp

May 19, 2017

This evening we are coming to you from Kahiltna Base Camp!  The team enjoyed a relaxing morning and leisurely lunch as we waited for a break in the weather. Just when we thought we would be spending another night in town, K2 gave the signal and our two pilots Randy and Barry carried us over the clouds into the range and descended into the heart of the mountains.

Now we are enjoying some late evening sun cooking dinner and setting up camp. The team is very excited to be here, especially the ladies who cannot stop smiling. 

RMI Guide Leon Davis & Team

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Alaska Seminar: Davis & Team Packed and Ready to Fly from Talkeenta

Our Alaska Mountaineering Seminar May 17 - 27 team is here in Talkeetna, packed and ready to fly…but sometimes ready is not enough.  A Southwest flow over the Aleutians is slowly pushing that warm moisture that brings snow and rain to the range. So we played the game of waiting and lost the luck. Nonetheless the team here is of joyous enthusiasm and energy and we shall try again tomorrow.
We will hope for clear skies in the morning.

RMI Guide Mike King

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Alaska Seminar: Davis & Team Back in Talkeetna

May 15, 2017

Now that we have a second to breathe, there is time to recap our last day on the glacier. The team woke at 0400 to the hard whiteout conditions and the forecasted 6 inches of new snow turned out to be a few feet. We slowly packed up camp and headed downhill at 0700 as things were not getting better. We were walking in full instrument conditions and even walked in a circle trying to find wands that mark the old track. Hard to tell up from down, left from right that morning. A strong wind followed us down Ski Hill where we emerged from the soup and kept up all the way to Heartbreak Hill. By 1300 we were at the airstrip hoping the Otters would be able to handle the crosswinds for landing on the SE Fork of the Kahiltna. Sure enough, by 1600 our team was loaded up on two K2 planes and back to the green smells of town. Grand experience for us all and we appreciated the tenacious nature of our climbers.

RMI Guide Leon Davis

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Alaska Seminar: Here Comes the Snow

May 13, 2017 - 8:21 pm PT

We woke up this morning when the cold bites the hardest and wasted little time making hot water for cereal and tea. Today we went to venture up the Kahiltna Dome ridge with good weather on our side. The work we did yesterday breaking trail was worth it as we made quick work of the steep slope. Once atop the ridge the sun made its appearance coming from behind the west buttress and warming our bones.  We began walking the ridge crest in deep snow and quickly found the maze of cracks shooting across. Progress was slow climbing with an axe in one hand and a probe in the other. The deep snow and one too many crevasse falls stopped us and so we headed down to camp but not before enjoying the sunrise from our 11,000’ perch. Now the snow has started and we plan to make the long walk to base camp in the early Alaska twilight.

RMI Guide Leon Davis

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Alaska Seminar: Davis & Team at the Base of Kahiltna Dome

May 12, 2017 - 9:13 pm PT

Nice day here at 10,000’ on the upper Kahiltna Glacier. The team slept in a bit after the hard day yesterday. We kitted up and waddled through a few feet of snow to the base of the ridge for some fixed line travel and snow science. A few of us kept our snow shoes on and put in a track up the ridge of Kahiltna Dome for an eventual attempt early tomorrow if the weather holds. All is well here in Alaska. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather!

RMI Guide Leon Davis

On The Map

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Alaska Seminar: Team Climbs to Base of Kahiltna Pass & Establishes Camp

All good on the Alaska Mountaineering Seminar front! A cold and clear wake up had us briskly packing up camp and beginning the sun-baked hike up to the base of Kahiltna Pass at about 9,800’, where we established our next camp. The way was smooth but hot, and we are rewarded with sweeping views of Mount Capps, Kahiltna Dome and the entire Kahiltna glacier. Some snow is faintly swirling through the air adding to the grandeur of our setting as we prep dinner. Tomorrow we look forward to an active rest day with a whole set of new mountain travel skills to take in.

RMI Guide Jessie Poquerusse & the team

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Alaska Seminar: Davis & Team Pack Up and Move to Camp 1

May 10, 2017 - 9:12 pm PT

The forecast threatened an 80% chance of more snow but we woke to clear skies. This morning was busy with packing, digging and more packing for our move to Camp 1. We hauled our sleds out onto the main Kahiltna under a hard sun and played leapfrog with a German team. By 5 pm we were cooking dinner outside in great weather. The team suffered under the hot globe with grace and we are going to do it again tomorrow to Camp 2.

RMI Guide Leon Davis

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Alaska Seminar: Team Enjoys Full Day of Training

May 9, 2017 10:19 pm

Today was action-packed as we rotated through a series of skills sessions. Sled rigging, avalanche awareness and practice beacon searches, and a more realistic and elaborate crevasse rescue scenario made for a full day of mountain skills. About mid-day we even had the pleasure of clear skies for the first time in a couple days. Dinner burritos and fruit pie to top it off!

RMI Guide Jessie Poquerusse

On The Map

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Alaska Seminar: Learning Mountain Skills in the Great Outdoors

Today was off to an early start! After a quick breakfast, we stretched our legs heading up glacier to the base of Radio Tower and beyond to the cirque at the base of the East ridge of Frances, where we chatted about glaciology, route planning and navigation. Menacing seracs and at times nearly white-out conditions made the teachings come to life. After heading back to camp and a quick break, we learned and reviewed basic knots and hitches to get us ready for session 1 of basic crevasse rescue. We put to use our anchor building tactics from the previous day and spent the afternoon doing basic rescue drills. Cozying up to burritos was a great end to a long day.

RMI Guide Jessie Poquerusse & team

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Alaska Seminar: Team Begins Training

May 7, 2017 - 8:40 pm PT

Success on day 2 of the Alaska Mountaineering Seminar - Expedition! We started out the day going over the bread and butter of mountaineering, including snow walking, using and traveling with crampons and practicing self arrest. We then progressed into learning about and building snow anchors. After a short rest, the calm morning gave way to snow flurries, which gradually picked up as we learned and began to build a wall or our camp—earning our dinners! Overall, it was a full day of review, learning, and work and we’re all happily in bed resting ready for our first jaunt onto the glacier tomorrow.

RMI Guide Jessie Poquerusse & team

On The Map

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