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Entries By matias francis

Cotopaxi Express: Wittmier & Team Reach summit of Illiniza Norte, Ready for Cotopaxi

When we arrived in Ecuador last weekend it had been rainy for weeks on end.  Even the first couple days of this trip were quite stormy in the afternoons.  But over the last couple days the patterns have been changing for the better.  This morning we leave the Chilcabamba Eco Lodge and have our fingers crossed for one more day of good weather!  Tomorrow is the main event, Cotopaxi summit day, and the excitement is palpable.  Looking out the main window of the dining room at Chilcabamba we can see the summit of Cotopaxi and most of the route.

Included in the pictures are a couple from Iliniza Norte yesterday and one of Cotopaxi from the back porch at Chilcabamba.

RMI Guide Dustin Wittmier

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Wishing you Clear sky on Cotopaxi Dustin!!

Posted by: Dave Kestel on 11/5/2021 at 3:05 am

Cotopaxi Express: Wittmier & Team Hike to summit of Rucu Pichincha

November 2, 2021 - 6:33 am PT

Yesterday we did our first serious acclimatizing by hiking Rucu Pichincha.  It is a fun hike that includes a gondola ride to 13,000' where we began our ascent to Rucu Pichincha, with an official summit elevation of 15354'.  The entire team made it to the summit after a few hours of hiking and a short scramble.  We then hustled down to avoid the afternoon rains and arrived back at the gondola before getting wet.  This morning we are headed to Iliniza to make a summit attempt on Iliniza Norte tomorrow!

RMI Guide Dustin Wittmier

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

That is Awesome Dustin!!! Best of luck to you and the team!!!

Posted by: Dave Kestel on 11/3/2021 at 4:05 am

Nice hike to the summit of Rucu Puchincha.  Keep up the good work.

Posted by: Joel Cline on 11/2/2021 at 8:16 am

Mt. Shuksan: Team Led by Matias Francis reaches summit via Fisher Chimneys

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

At around 10am today a team led by RMI Guide Matias Francis reached the summit of Mt. Shuksan. The climbable weather was short lived, as they raced the impending rain back to camp. The weather won this round as they made it back to camp soaked, but happy. The team will spend the night at high camp, before descending down during the day tomorrow (hopefully in the sun). 

Congratulations to the team!

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Mt. Triumph: Wittmier and Team Reach Summit

The team led by RMI Guides Dustin Wittmier and Matias Francis reached the summit of Mt. Triumph today! The team climbed Triumph's northeast ridge to the summit where they enjoyed views deep into the North Cascades, including Mt. Baker. The team is making the most of their time in the North Cascades and plan to climb Thornton Peak tomorrow before their program concludes later this week.

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Mt. Rainier: Summit Climb Teams on Top!

The Mt. Rainier Summit Climb teams, led be RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer and Matias Francis crested the crater rim at 8:15 a.m.  Although the sun is shining, the skies are a bit hazy.  The team will spend some time on top before starting the descent.

Congratulations to today's summit climbers!

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Its with great humility that I thank Pete and Matias (ma-TE-us, get it right, and sorry for teasing you about it) for taking me, my children (Josh and Molly) and my children’s friends (Dylan, Bri, Brett and Luke) up that morning and congratulations to Josh and Dylan (and the other 4 climbers that morning) for summitting. Also, Special thanks to Josh Hankin for the great instruction, Augi Fleeras for guiding my daughter and Bri down and for Nathan Delmar (sorry about the macramé Joke-I’m sure it gets old and for bringing me down and not dropping me into a crevasse) and David Price (you are just an all around good dude). You guides do something amazing and I’ve seen amazing. Not only do you shoulder the responsibility for taking mostly unprepared climbers up this mountain and protect our lives, but you also trust us tourists to belay you and trust us not to make a lethal mistake and cost you your lives. And you do it every day and not for the money (pizza joke really not that funny). Pete, Matias and Josh especially, you guys are truly the most professional, mature, confident and athletic people I have every known, a special breed of individual who loves and appreciates the beauty of mountaineering so much that you go to extreme lengths to share it with others, many of us who have no business seeing it first hand, yet you do it with confidence and poise knowing that when we fall off or fall in, you can save us. Pete, thank you for recognizing that I needed to turn around and sending me down with Nathan. Also Pete and Matias, thank you for not stopping until Josh and Dylan were at the top in spite of the route conditions. To Peter and Kerri Whittaker, only got to say “hi” momentarily to you but it was both an honor and a pleasure. Thank you for finding guides like Pete, Matias, Josh, Augi, Nathan and David so a kid (old kid) from Kansas who has always dreamed of the mountains could experience Mountaineering first hand.


Chris Banwart

Posted by: Jon Banwart on 8/31/2021 at 7:50 pm

Great job everybody!!!!!

Felicitaciones Nicko!!!!!

Posted by: Jose Fulginiti on 8/28/2021 at 1:13 pm

Mt. Rainier: Four Day Climb Enjoys Meteor Shower and Beautiful Views

The Four Day Climb team August 9 - 12 led by RMI Guides Andy Bond and Matias Francis reached the summit of Mt. Rainier early this morning.  The team enjoyed a spectacular meteor shower as they left Camp Muir on their alpine start and climbed toward the summit.  Andy reported a beautiful day with calm winds and warm temperatures once the sun came up.  The team was starting their descent from the crater rim just after 6:30 am PT.  Once back at Camp Muir they will refuel and repack for the remaining 4.5 miles back down to Paradise.

Congratulations to today's climbers!

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Wow! What an incredible experience. Definitely a special day on the mountain.

Posted by: Amanda P on 8/13/2021 at 11:28 am

Forbidden Peak: Wittmier & Team Summit

At noon yesterday the West Ridge - Forbidden Peak team reached the summit.  We started early to beat the heat (and other parties) and were rewarded with shade for much of the ascent. The climb went smoothly, the team was strong and all optional crux pitches were sent!

RMI Guide Dustin Wittmier

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Mt. Rainier: Haugen & Kautz Seminar Team on Top!

RMI Guide Mike Haugen checked in via radio at 7:40 am as the Kautz Seminar July 18 - 23 team was just reaching the crater rim.  The team did well and climbed strong from their camp at the top of the Wapowety Cleaver.  After enjoying the views from the summit the team will descend via the Disappointment Cleaver route.  This group met at Rainier BaseCamp on Sunday, July 18 and after two days of off mountain training began their ascent via the Kautz Glacier Route.  Their time on the mountain included glacier travel training as well as focusing on techniques required for the current conditions on the upper mountain.  The team will conclude their program with a celebration in Ashford later today.

Congratulations to the Kautz Seminar climbers!

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Amazing accomplishment Dustin! Can’t wait to hear all about it!!

Posted by: Rose on 7/24/2021 at 12:48 pm

Way to go Dustin!  We are so proud of your accomplishments!  Can’t wait to hear about your expedition when you get back to work!  Your fans at iMemories!

Posted by: Sheila Beals on 7/23/2021 at 11:56 am

Mt. Rainier: The Climb for Clean Air Climbers 100% on Top!

The American Lung Association (ALA) Climb for Clean Air Teams were on the Mt. Rainier summit early this morning….100% success! RMI Guide Win Whittaker called from 13,500’ on the descent  back to Camp Muir.

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THANKS, RMI! What an incredible team of guides (special shout to Erika!). Already pondering the next move…:)

Posted by: John on 6/28/2021 at 2:19 pm

Way to go climbers! And such a gorgeous day!

Posted by: Stephanie on 6/26/2021 at 12:14 pm

Denali Expedition: Walter, Van Deventer & Teams Summit!

Thursday, June 3, 2021 - 10:27 am PT

We've waited through wind and snow for weeks and we finally got our shot. We woke up yesterday to clear skies and relatively (for 17k feet) warm temps in camp. We had stoves firing early, before sun hit camp, and got everyone up to start prepping. With breakfast done and packs loaded we stepped out of our sunny camp into the shadow of the Autobahn. It was a chilly couple hours crossing to Denali Pass and we were all psyched to get back into the sun. A slight, but cold 10mph breeze in our face kept it chilly all day, but we kept moving past Zebra Rocks, around Archdeacons Tower, onto the Football Field, up Pig Hill, and along the summit ridge to the summit! We were standing on top just after 6pm yesterday. With photos taken, we started working our way back down, well aware of the distance still to get back to the comfort of our sleeping bags. The long hours of sun help alot and we rolled back into camp around 11pm, just as the sun left camp. Tired, chilly, sore, but excited that we managed to reach our goal!

We'll start working our way down the mountain today, back to warmer temps, more oxygen, and a flight back to Talkeetna. They tend to be long days, so dispatches might be short, but we are headed home.

RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Mike Walter, Avery Parrinello, Matias Francis, Chase Halbert, Luke Wilhelm, and RMI Teams 1 and 2

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What an amazing accomplishment all of you have made !! Marc, I am so proud and honored to have you as my son.

Love you, Papa Bear

Posted by: David Gollob on 6/5/2021 at 7:33 am

Congratulations all! Such a lifetime of memories. Be safe coming down so you can make more memories.

Posted by: Susan K. Moore on 6/4/2021 at 10:27 pm

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