Entries By mark tucker

Mt. Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Enjoy Their First Day on Safari

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 15, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro

Today we traveled to Lake Manyara.  It was the first day of our four day safari through Tanzania and we had a great day.  Here is what the team had to say about our day in the bush.

TOP TEN LIST

One comment about today?

1. The hippos fighting in the pool - Peter
2. The first sighting of a herd of Zebra right next to our vehicle - Chelsea
3. Observing the silver billed horn bird take a dust bath - Bonny
4. Take off and landing of a huge flock of yellow billed storks - Mark
5. Taking in the sights of land and people on the highway while standing up with head out off open roofed Land Rover - Nate
6. Baby Baboon riding on the back of it’s mother, with cute ears - Elizabeth
7. Bargaining skills of local guys trying to sell a necklace - Jonathan
8. Vista of the Great Rift Valley from on top of the escarpment - William
9. Diversity of wild life in the field of vision at one moment - Allidah
10. The over easy eggs at breakfast - Madison

Zebras at Lake Manyara National Park, Tanzania.  Photo: RMI Collection

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Finish Descent and Prepare for Safari

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 14, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro

As I write, the band is cranking here at the Dik Dik. We had a great departure from the mountain this morning with perfect weather…..again.

What a packed week we had up on the Roof of Africa?! To be a guest in a foreign county is something special and this group shined at embracing the local staff as friends, not just someone for hire. The local staff were all so much a part of our success; it was tough to say goodbye. The time you spend on these big mountains is extreme in many ways and you always learn something about yourself and others. It’s a special and hard to describe experience.

Tomorrow we will continue to cut a swath through Tanzania as we head over to Lake Manyara National Park for our first day on safari. We’re pumped!

Don’t forget to kiss the Blarney before you’re next adventure!
RMI Guide Mark Tucker

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Descend to Mweka Camp after Summit

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 13, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 10,000'

Our team reached the summit of Kilimanjaro this morning in good style and we have now arrived at Mweka Camp at 10,000 ft for our last night here on Kilimanjaro.  This group I have had the pleasure to climb with excelled in all phases while on the mountain. I have a high level of confidence they will be able to handle phase two, our game viewing safari. But for now we will enjoy a well deserved night’s rest and tomorrow make our way down the to the trail head.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

Climbers en route to the summit of Kilimanjaro.  Photo: RMI Collection

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Reach Barafu Camp

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 12, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 15,000'

Another day of nice weather…YEAH! A few hours of hiking and here we are at Barafu Camp at 15,000 ft. The team got busy upon arrival preparing for the early morning departure from here toward the summit, sorting through the stay and go gear since we will come back thru this camp on our way down from the summit. We all pooled together our favorite treats and made up some tasty looking lunches. We took a short hike up to get familiar with the start of the climb that will confront us with our alpine start from High Camp to the summit of Kilimanjaro.

It’s nap time now before our early dinner then we will take another short rest before starting our summit attempt. The team continues to do well, wish us luck!

RMI Guide Mark Tucker & Team

Barafu Camp on Kilimanjaro. RMI Photo Collection

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Tackle the Barranco Wall

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 11, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 13,160'

Can we have a couple more beautiful days please?! I don’t like to beg but if we can continue with weather like this we would greatly appreciate it.

A nice lazy start to the day was our plan in order to miss the traffic while climbing the Barranco Wall. The Barranco Wall is a series of rock bands just out of camp that gets your attention and requires your hands from time to time. At the top of the Wall we took some photos and gave each other some high fives before continuing on our way. We then traversed below the upper mountain for a couple hours to end up at Karanga Camp (13,160’) for the night. Camp is situated on a bit of a slope but our staff did a fine job of finding some pretty flat ground for the tents.

We continue to adjust both mentally and physically to this extreme environment; we’re meeting the challenges head on. This team did there homework, taking training to heart prior to the climb and the investment is paying off. What a great group to climb with on Kilimanjaro!

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

RMI climbers ascending through the Karanga Valey on Kilimanjaro. Photo: Seth Waterfall

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Climb High and Sleep Low

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 10, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 13,030'

It was a BIG day, but not so enormous for this tough team. We woke up early and put in a solid six hours of climbing in good style. At one point on the trail we reached just under 15,000 ft, our current trip high point. We are now at 13,030 ft at the Barranco Camp. The plan of climbing high and sleeping low is in place for acclimatization and seems to be working well; everybody is in good shape. The upper mountain towers above us at this camp and the beautiful weather will make for a fantastic sunset tonight.

Tomorrow we tackle the Barranco Wall as we continue our ascent of Kilimanjaro. We will check-in and let you know how that goes.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

The upper slopes of Kilimanjaro as seen from Barranco Camp. Photo: RMI Collection

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Enjoy the Views

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 09, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 12,570'

Battery recharge accomplished! It is so important to be good at resting when climbing a big mountain; and boy can this team sleep!

How about a perfect weather day? It was tough but that is what we had to deal with today. Fantastic views of the upper mountain got the teams attention as we continued our journey upward on Kilimanjaro. It sure looks like along way up and it is so we are taking it one day, one stretch, and one step at a time. In addition to the jaw dropping views, the team spent today’s climb focusing on their fundamental climbing techniques.

We are now settled into our camp at 12,570’ on the Shira Plateau. Adjusting to this kind of altitude is always a challenge but this team is up for it. No headaches, good appetites, and great attitudes confirm that this team is doing well and enjoying the climb.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

RMI climbers ascending the Shira Plateau. Photo: Seth Waterfall

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Hit The Trail

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 08, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro
Elevation: 9,890'

Gortex was the outfit of choice when we arrived at the Kilimanjaro National Park Entrance Gate this morning. Lucky for us, the rain stopped and we had nice conditions as we climbed through the rainforest on Kilimanjaro’s lower slopes and the giant heather in the Moorland Zone to reach Machame Camp. The team did well and we’re all our tucked in for the night at ~10,000 ft on this beautiful mountain.

Jet lag still prevails and we are looking forward a good night’s sleep for our first night on the mountain. We will check in again tomorrow with our progress towards the Roof of Africa.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

The RMI July 5th Kilimanjaro Team ready to hit the trail. Photo: Mark Tucker The RMI July 5th Kilimanjaro Team with their team vehicle. Photo: Mark Tucker

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Kilimanjaro: Tucker & Team Arrive in Africa

Posted by: Mark Tucker | July 07, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Kilimanjaro

The entire team has arrived in Tanzania.  We spent last night at the Dik Dik Hotel in Usa River and have been enjoying the great food and hospitality.
After a leisurely breakfast, part of our team traveled to a local orphanage to pass along some items they brought from the US.  It was well received and very much appreciated.
Our equipment checks went smoothly, thanks to the great preparation made by the team.  We should be all set for our time on the mountain. 
We have experienced a bit of light rain this afternoon and cool temperatures in the lowlands of Usa River at around 4,000’.  Unfortunately it wasn’t warm enough for anyone to appreciate the beautiful Dik Dik swimming pool. 

We will get to bed early tonight to help recover from our long flights and so that we are rested and ready to head into Kilimanjaro National Park tomorrow morning.

Stay tuned,
RMI Guide Mark Tucker

Visiting the Ojamaa Orphanage in Tanzania. Photo: Chelsea Hall Children jump roping at the Ojamaa Orphanage. Photo: Chelsea Hall Reading with the Ojamaa Orphanage children in Tanzania. Photo: Chelsea Hall The Rogers Kilimanjaro team dinner at the Dik Dik Hotel, Tanzania. Photo: Madison Cronin

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Mt. Everest: Kathmandu & Beyond

Posted by: Dave Hahn, JJ Justman, Mark Tucker | May 03, 2015
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 4,383'

Rain, thunder and lightning continued late into the Lukla night, but we all felt pretty confident that the dawn would bring perfect flying weather… Which it did.  We were up at 5 AM and over to the craziness of Lukla International Airport by 6 AM.  At around 7 or so, a twin engine prop plane came in with the right letters and numbers on its tail and we pushed our way through the crowd to catch our flight.  That flight was blissfully uneventful and by 7:30 we were just another batch of tourists in Kathmandu... Rubbernecking from our van to catch whatever signs of quake damage we could see on the way to our comfortable hotel.  A casual observer could easily go unaware of the tragedy unfolding in the country around us… things are quickly returning to “normal” for those with means in the capital.  The hotel was jam-packed with correspondents, camera crews, diplomats and a few grubby climbers.  We met a number of our guide friends -some of whom had ambitious and worthy plans to go out to remote villages to do what they could to save lives, and some of whom, just like ourselves, intended to get out of the country as soon as possible so as not to require care and feeding from an already over-stressed society.  Our team passed the afternoon resting, cleaning up, exploring and reconnecting.  I was lucky enough to connect with the legendary Miss Elizabeth Hawley for the team’s all important post-climb interview.  As expected, there wasn’t much to relate in terms of climbing goals achieved… none-the-less, we chatted for a delightful -and perhaps a bit melancholy- hour over the continuing challenges of these contemporary Everest seasons.
Back at the hotel, our team assembled for one final evening together, with a couple of toasts and a fine rooftop dinner.  We were not even remotely cold or uncomfortable, we weren’t in danger and we had a rising and beautiful full moon to entertain us.
Tomorrow we’ll scatter to ride a number of bigger and faster aircraft toward our own homes.  Thank you for following along in this challenging season.  We each feel extremely fortunate to have come unscathed through extraordinary circumstances.  To this point, we’ve had the convenience and satisfaction of placing cash directly into the hands of those who’ve suffered… from this point onward, we’ll try to match the generosity of those at home… Making considered contributions to responsible aid organizations benefiting all Nepalis.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

The Everest team back in Kathmandu. Photo courtesy of Chhering Dorjee Sherpa

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It is great to see you sitting on furniture and enjoying each others stories.

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Posted by: Mark on 5/3/2015 at 11:19 am

Great to see your smiling face Larry. ..Best + Bless to you and JJ and team…Thx Dave for words…Waltero

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Posted by: Walter Glover on 5/3/2015 at 10:54 am


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