Entries By pete van deventer
September 8, 2019
The Four Day Climb September 5 - 8 reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning led by RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer and Andy Bond. The guides reported cold temperatures this morning with winds 15 mph and a dusting of new snow on the upper mountain. Mother nature put on quite a show last night with thunder and lightning throughout the area followed by some serious rain. We are glad the timing of the storm happened once the teams were at Camp Muir and cleared enough for them to make it to the summit today. Once back at Camp Muir the teams will continue to Paradise and transfer to Rainier BaseCamp. This afternoon they will conclude their program with a short celebration.
Congratulations to today’s climbers!
WTG dad! So proud! Can’t wait to see pictures!
Posted by: Jennifer C Hitz on 9/8/2019 at 5:00 pm
Good job, Proud of you!
Posted by: Bobby & Kristi on 9/8/2019 at 12:53 pm
September 2, 2019
RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer and Taylor Bickford led their Four Day Climb August 30 - 2 September teams to the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning. Pete reported a light breeze and nice climbing conditions as the team was approaching the crater rim around 8:30 AM. After photos and high-fives on the summit the team will return to Camp Muir and continue their descent to Paradise. There program will conclude this afternoon with a celebration at Rainier BaseCamp.
Congratulations to today’s climbers!
Congratulations Kerry & Jeff, you did it…..never a doubt! We miss you, just know, it’s 100 degrees in Colorado today, the snow looks very refreshing. See you soon. Kisses
Posted by: Grandma on 9/2/2019 at 2:39 pm
Awesome Jeff & Kerry! What a great feeling it must be to train and accomplish such a feat
Posted by: Tom Hutcheson on 9/2/2019 at 11:08 am
August 29, 2019
The Five Day Climb August 25 - 29 reached the summit of Mt. Rainier on Wednesday evening. RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer and Josh McDowell reported a light breeze and clear skies. The weather at Camp Muir this morning is cloudy with a soaking rain. The team is hoping the rain dissipates for their departure and walk down the Muir Snowfield to Paradise. The team will celebrate their adventure in Ashford later today and conclude their program.
Congratulations to the Five Day Climber!
Awesome climb, awesome guides, good advice. professional team. Thanks josh! Take care.
Posted by: Paul koltronis on 9/2/2019 at 2:04 am
Way to go, dad! What an amazing accomplishment. . . You never cease to amaze us! We love you and are so proud of you!
Safe journey to the mainland.
Love and God Bless,
Bo, Chris, and Carlton
Posted by: Bo, Chris, and Carlton on 8/29/2019 at 2:20 pm
August 23, 2019
Our Elbrus Northside team has returned to the U.S. and had a bit of time to work through the jet lag of jumping nine hours back in time on the return trip home. Our time in St. Petersburg was spectacular. The city has the feel of Old Europe, and is often compared to Venice because of the numerous canals and rivers that crisscross the city. Founded by Peter the Great, and the capitol of the Russian Empire for nearly 200 years, St. Petersburg is still considered the cultural capitol of Russia. We arrived mid afternoon with enough time to take a stroll around the city, before a delicious dinner at the Jerome, a perennial favorite restaurant year after year. The following day we took the city by storm, following our tour guide Olga as we walked as many of architectural and public space sites as we could fit in. From St. Issacs Cathedral with it’s colorful mosaics, massive pillars, and scars on the facade left over from the 900+ day siege of St. Petersburg during WWII, to the luxurious Summer Gardens of the Romanovs, St. Petersburg displays the wealth, opulence, culture, and liveliness of the Tsar era. We spent the afternoon wandering through the massive winter palace of the Romanovs, now home to the Hermitage Museum. We spent the evening on a delightful canal tour by boat, and our last dinner in Russia. St. Petersburg averages only 60 days of sunlight each year, but our impression was far different - blue skies, comfortable temps, nice breezes on the canal, it was everything that summer should be and a nice refresh after our time on the mountain.
International climbing trips at their best are about far more than just the mountain or the climbing. The cultural and historical sites we saw, the insight into their history that we gained, and the people we met along the way are just as important. We had a number of interactions with teams of Russian climbers in camp, eager to understand how and why we had come so far to climb their humble mountain. The stories we read in the news, on either side of the ocean, can paint the other’s countries as adversaries and opponents, but everyone we met was overwhelmingly friendly. As one climber in a hut one evening put it, “The people you meet in the mountains - they are good people.” That was true of the climbers we met, and most certainly true of our team as well. Watching everyone work through the tough days, have their great days, and come together in difficult moments - such as setting up tents at 15,000’ in a blustery 35 mph wind - is one of the joys of guiding and climbing, and it was such a pleasure to work with this team. Thanks so much to them, to our local outfitter, to Sasha, our local guide, translator, and fixer of all, and thanks to everyone who followed along. We’ll be back at it next year!
August 16, 2019
Thursday, August 15, 2019 - 8:32 PM PT
We are out of the mountains! It took a little extra time to make it happen. One of the vans apparently broke down on the way to get us, necessitating a return to Kislovodsk for another vehicle, and a few hour delay. The WAS van eventually showed up at base camp and unloaded its inhabitants and gear, and we proceeded to pack the back full with duffels. The river had risen, so rather than be in the van for the crossing, we walked across the nearby fields, crossed the river on a small bridge, and met the van on the far side. The four wheel drive road is always exciting as we sway back and forth with the ruts, and was made even more so by the uncanny resemblance of our vehicle to a clown car with everyone inside.
Though we arrived late to Kislovodsk, we got a delicious dinner at a Georgian restaurant on the central pedestrian mall. Tomorrow we transition back to big city mode, making our way to St. Petersburg.
RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Mike Uchal, and team hurry up and wait
August 14, 2019
The mountain time is coming to a close. We managed to get everything stuffed into, tied to the side, or strapped under our packs and split freedom the moraine camp this morning. Loads were heavy, but we were moving with gravity, and we made it to base camp nice and quickly. It’s only been a week up high, but after a week if rocks and glacier, the green of plants down low looks like it was done in technicolor. Base camp comes with perks: pizzas, caucasian pies, and cold fantas, cokes, and beers. We took the afternoon to sort gear back into duffels to be better set up for our coming flights, soak feet in the mineral springs, and enjoy a last bit of the mountain. The vans will be here in the morning for us and before we know it, we’ll be back in town.
The trip is not over though. Still to come, adventures in Kislovodsk and St. Petersburg.
RMI Guides Pete, Mike, and team we’re psyched to be done with boots
Great job Marcky-poo! Cant wait to have you back at my place. Miss you and love you!
Posted by: Lindsey on 8/15/2019 at 10:09 am
August 13, 2019
We had a PERFECT summit day today. Last night’s winds had calmed by morning and we got started just before 8 am. We climbed along Lenz Rocks before banking to the west and beginning the traverse across a large bowl towards the saddle between the East and West summits. The sky was brilliant blue all day without a cloud in the sky. We intersected the route to the West summit and all of the Southside climbers midway up the final pitch. The timing couldn’t have been better as all of them were already descending and we had the summit entirely to ourselves, something of a rarity on Elbrus. The views over the surrounding Caucasus and the verdant green hills back towards Kislovodsk were stunning, and we spent about 30 minutes on top taking them in.
Marc and Mike decided to take an extra jaunt to tag the East summit as well, while the rest of the team descended back to our camp at Lenz. We took a brief break, then packed our camp to descend further to the relative comforts of the Moraine Camp at 12,000’. With ramen to recharge us, we’re headed to bed after a long, full day. We’ll continue to base camp in the morning, more than likely spend the night there, then return to Kislovodsk the following day. But now, to bed.
On The Map
Congratulations!!! How awesome! Safe travels back everyone!
Posted by: Jimmy Hoadrea on 8/14/2019 at 10:11 am
Congratulations Dan and the entire team!
Posted by: Tom Maddalena on 8/14/2019 at 7:16 am
August 12, 2019
Things looked pretty perfect this morning, so we loaded up our packs and started climbing. Lenz Rocks is a somewhat exposed camp and there aren’t so many tent sites, so we were happy to be some of the first out of camp with full-looking backpacks intending to stay up high tonight. The breeze mainly kept things pleasantly cool as we worked our way up the glacier, intensifying only just as we reached Lenz. It took the whole team working together to keep a handle on tents as we got them set up. Now, we are comfortably moved into our abodes, resting for the summit push tomorrow. The winds are supposed to continue to diminish overnight, so things are shaping up nicely.
On The Map
August 12, 2019
Sunday, August 11, 2019, 10:36 PM PST
Our hope was that the forecast was overly aggressive in its wind prediction, but early in the morning, long before the sun rose, wind started to buffet our huts. As the morning wore on, the wind in camp wasn’t much more than a touch unpleasant, but the evidence of its strength up higher rated in the plumes if snow ripping across the glacier above. It wasn’t a difficult decision to stay in camp today in the comfort of our huts and try again tomorrow, when the forecast has the winds dropping to a manageable level. We passed the time with a lot of reading, napping, and some light core strength.
Hopefully we see the forecasted change tomorrow!
RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Mike Uchal, and team “we have collectively read an entire library”
On The Map
August 10, 2019
We got our first day of glacier climbing in, and finally used all of the gear that we’ve been carting through airports and carrying up trails. Our main goal was to move our tents up to our high camp at Lenz Rocks and get some acclimatization time in too. We accomplished both. We roped up and climbed 2.5 hours of warm, sunny, and sometimes in the clouds glacier. Just below Lenz Rocks, we found the wind, the telltales of which we’d been watching for awhile. It wasn’t any match for us though, and another half hour of climbing got us to our cache site.
The trip down is direct and fast. What took four hours to get up took maybe an hour to get down as we opened our strides up and rolled out of the wind back into the furnace.
We’re hoping conditions look good in the morning to make our move and prepare to head for the summit.
RMI Guides Pete and Mike, and team “why are the hut doors all made for people who are 5 feet tall?”
Great to hear the winds have calmed and the team is doing well. Awesome pictures! Sounds like Marc is still always looking to do an extra leg long after mostly everyone is spent. “Similar to Mt. Whitney”. Also, was wondering how it felt to have no issues with the hut doors for Marc since the 5 foot height was comfortably taller. :-). All the best to the team and my Buddy.
Posted by: Jimmy Hoadrea on 8/14/2019 at 10:04 am