Entries By levi kepsel
June 30, 2014
Hey, it’s Billy here checking in from 14,000’. Our team had a lazy morning today and packed up and moved down from the 17 Camp to the 14 Camp on Mt. McKinley. We had some pretty slow going due to some wind and some kind of funky weather but especially due to very deep snow conditions, lots and lots of snow from the previous storm cycle that kept us at 17.
We are going to walk out of here early tomorrow morning, very early and head for the air strip. So hopefully the next check in will come from the Kahiltna landing strip.
That’s all for now.
RMI Guide Billy Nugent
On The Map
Huge Congrats!!! I can’t wait to hear all the stories from your adventure! The sunny, warm weather is waiting for you along with everyone here that loves you, two! Elisabeth
Posted by: Elisabeth on 7/1/2014 at 8:32 am
GET SOME team Freed! Keep it goin. Hope the “funky” weather is quenching your thirst to be an official stormchaser
Posted by: Jess on 6/30/2014 at 11:27 am
June 29, 2014
June 29, 2014 - 4:07 am PT
Hey it’s Billy here with a late-night check in. I just finished up making dinner and filling water bottles for folks after a successful summit bid today. Everybody’s pretty much racked out and exhausted, laying in their tents right now. But their spirits are definitely high. Everyone made it to the summit. We enjoyed an awesome day. Clear blue skies. It was very, very cold, but there was no wind and we were able to make it happen. So, that’s all for now. We’ll check in again on our way out. Ciao.
RMI Guide Billy Nugent calls in after successful summit.
On The Map
Congratulations to Bruce and Michael. We are soooo happy for you! Rest, relax, and celebrate when you are ready! Cheers, Katherine and Reid
Posted by: Katherine Mitchell on 7/1/2014 at 7:55 pm
Congrats to Bruce and Michael Freedman and all the rest of the team. Great to see that you made it through all the weather. Cant wait to hear the stories.
Posted by: Ron Holt on 7/1/2014 at 7:07 pm
June 28, 2014
June 27, 2014 - 5:17 pm
Hey this is Billy. I’m calling in from 17,000 feet again. We’re still here. And we’re still pin down by the weather. But things are starting to look like they maybe improving so keep your fingers crossed for us. We will check in again tomorrow. Nothing new to report.
Billy Nugent calls in from 17K Camp.
On The Map
Bruce Michael and Team - we’re all crossing fingers and toes that your perseverance and weather join forces to push you to that summit soon! Tapi wants you back safe & sound too - she’s going through steak withdrawal!
Posted by: Jen on 6/29/2014 at 6:30 am
What an adventure! Hang in there and be safe - Mother Nature owes you a break soon!
Posted by: Chambos on 6/28/2014 at 6:32 pm
June 27, 2014
June 26, 2014 - 9:33 pm PT
Hey this is Billy checking in from 17K on Denali, again, where we are still pinned down by the weather. Today is our second storm day. We actually had some sort of blue skies and clearing and some hope on the horizon but things closed back in here. They are calling for high pressure to build over the mountain this weekend. If we get up tomorrow and it looks promising, we might take a crack at it or we might be sitting tight until Saturday. Last night was definitely one of the most ferocious storms I have had to battle up here in Alaska. We were definitely up all night digging out tents with feet and feet of snow and very, very strong winds- 70 miles an hour. For our chance for it, we have tons of food and fuel, and we just need the weather to cooperate. And that’s all for now.
RMI Guide Billy Nugent calls in from 17K Camp.
On The Map
Keep warm and safe above all. The forecast is much better for the weekend!
Posted by: Monique on 6/27/2014 at 7:21 pm
June 26, 2014
June 28, 2014 - 10:27pm
Hey, it’s Billy calling in from 17 Camp on Denali. Today was not summit day for us. We woke up to some inclement weather that’s been steadily working all day with winds gusting near 70 miles an hour or so. We build up pretty solid, fortified camp and everyone’s sitting tight and holding on. Winds from the storm are supposed to give way to nicer weather in the next couple of days so we’re just sitting tight with our fingers crossed. We’ll call and check in tomorrow, to let you know if we got up there. That’s all for now.
Billy Nugent checking in from 17,200' Camp on Denali
Eric: 70mph winds…OUCH…flapping tent syndrome….use the ear bud skull cap combo to keep from going insane! Trust tomorrow things calm down. U.P.
Posted by: Paul on 6/26/2014 at 4:03 pm
Been checking the blog nonstop to see if you guys had made any progress! Not to worry, keeping our fingers crossed that the weather clears up and you will be able to make a successful summit bid! Keep up the great work! Miss you Dad and Michael! xoxo
For any of you soccer fans up there: the Men’s US soccer team advanced to the knockout round about an hour ago (despite a loss to Germany). #MURICA
Posted by: Katie Freedman on 6/26/2014 at 11:32 am
June 23, 2014
June 22, 2014 - 11:26 pm PT
Hey, it’s Billy checking in here from 14,000’ on Denali. Our team had a great day up on the West Buttress today. We were able to carry a load of food, fuel and supplies up to 17,000’ and get the cache in at 17,000’ Camp. It was a long day on the Buttress though. We had mostly clear skies but lots and lots wind and lots of blowing snow. So it made for a tough day all in all everyone did really well.
Everyone is hanging in there and we are hoping to rest tomorrow and then set up for our summit bid whenever the weather decides to open up.
That is all for now.
RMI Guide Billy Nugent checks in from 14,000 ft on Mt. McKinley
On The Map
Greetings Michael, Bruce & the Rest of the Team: Hope Mother Nature offers up a summit bid soon! You guys are awesome - we are following the blog every day!
Posted by: Chambos on 6/23/2014 at 5:43 pm
Heyooooooooooooooooo!!! You’re almost there! Whoop whoop! You got this! We can’t wait for you to come back because we have a fourteener called Mt. McCornley waiting for you to tackle :)
Good luck and finish strong!
Posted by: Team Olson on 6/23/2014 at 4:28 pm
June 22, 2014
June 22, 2014 - 12:04 am PT
A snowy day here at 14K…
Howdy all. Our team enjoyed a weather/rest day after our back-carry yesterday. Winds up on the West Buttress and steady snow through most of the day kept us from making an attempt at a carry up to 17K Camp. Tomorrow’s weather outlook is a bit more promising and we are hoping to capitalize.
On a brighter note, the two successful RMI teams came down from the summit and spent some time with us on their descent to the airstrip. It was a fun reunion for everyone and I congratulated those guys on their success and wish them safe passage down the Kahiltna.
On The Map
Eric: Prayers and crossed fingers for clear weather over the next three days! Being on top with blue skies and marginal wind would be awesome! Be smart & safe! Paul
Posted by: Paul on 6/23/2014 at 11:42 am
Michael & Bruce…sending you so much love and prayers from NYC…thinking of you guys and our amazing Kili adventure. You are both awesome and I KNOW you & your team will have incredible stories to share! Cannot wait to hear all about your climb and see your pics! Love you! xoxo Christine & the Shortman
Posted by: Christine on 6/22/2014 at 6:05 pm
June 21, 2014
June 20, 2014 - 10:08 pm PT
Back-carry from Windy Corner to 14K Camp? Mission accomplished.
We enjoyed the best weather of the trip today. Morning snow flurries gave way to sapphire skies and gorgeous views of the entire range. Our back-carry only took us a couple of hours to complete so we spent the rest of the day soaking in the grandeur of the Alaska Range.
They’re calling for over a foot of snow tomorrow so we may end up taking a weather day but the trend is supposedly clearing Sunday through Tuesday. Could be our window? We’ll see…
RMI Guide Billy Nugent from 14K Camp
On The Map
Keeping the gym boys up on your progress
Good luck to the summit
Posted by: Edward Gramm on 6/21/2014 at 8:50 pm
Good job and make sure you are carrying extra weight in your pack so you have practice when you have to carry mine again :-)
Posted by: Jenny Olson on 6/21/2014 at 7:44 pm
June 20, 2014
June 19, 2014 - 10:41 pm PT
We have arrived at 14,200’! The weather today was marginal with moderate winds, occasionally heavy snow, and sometimes even hot sunbreaks. A little bit of everything made for an interesting move. McKinley’s 14K camp is uncharacteristically empty; lots of snowed in abandoned camps to choose from but they were all pretty crummy. We ended up digging out some old platforms and quarrying new blocks to rebuild some delapidated walls to protect our tents from the wind. We did find a great pre-dug posh that must have been abandoned by Jake or Tyler’s crew as they moved up to 17K today. Thanks guys! Our team is racked out already after our big day and eating a hot meal. Tomorrow’s plans call for an easy back carry and hopefully some rest in the afternoon.
On The Map
June 19, 2014
June 18, 2014 - 9:00 pm PT
We went around Windy Corner! We dug a hole (or chipped one out of extremely hard snow)! We buried some stuff (food, fuel, overboots, etc.)! And then we came back down to our camp at 11k’. All in all, we had a great day; the team is moving well and getting more and more psyched as we make our way up the mountain. The weather is gradually improving and we enjoyed blue skies and beautiful views of the Messner Couloir and the Orient Express on the upper mountain from the cache site. We filled up with an early dinner tonight and are racked out in anticipation of a big day tomorrow on our move to 14k’ camp.
Check in again tomorrow…
On The Map
Mista Freed - hope the climb is going well. I am climbing too - the ramp in my tank to eat pieces of sausage. Give ‘em hell!
Posted by: Moytle Freedman on 6/20/2014 at 10:49 am
Hi Eric, sounds like things are going well. Enjoy your adventure and stay safe. Love you, Mom and Dad
Posted by: David Olson on 6/20/2014 at 5:30 am