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Entries By pete van deventer

May 19, 2015

Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Van Deventer & Team Rest at 11,000’ Camp

May 19, 2015 - 12:39 am PT

We woke to the sound of the mob leaving 11,000’ Camp to move to 14,000’. Winds have prevented teams from moving up for several days, and so 11 has become a bit of a bottle neck. Happy to be tucked into warm sleeping bags and without a camp to move today, we kept dozing until the sun hit our tents. With the warmth, we smashed out a smoked salmon and bagel breakfast, and donned empty packs to retrieve the food and fuel that we cached yesterday. Back in time for an afternoon siesta, we spent some more time horizontal, and then did a quick review of our crampon and ice ax skills. A story filled dinner stretched into the night and now it’s time to get some shut eye. We got the blog comments that you all posted today and read them over dinner. Many thanks. Tomorrow we’ll hopefully boost some food and fuel up higher to windy corner to set us up for a move to 14,000’. Good night to all. We’ll be in touch tomorrow.

RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Robby Young, Josh Maggard, and team

On The Map

Critt I Love You!! Your lil sis is so proud. Keep being awesome!

Posted by: Heather Hartnett on 5/20/2015 at 6:13 am

So glad you are all well and safe. Kinda glad it’s not me freezing my butt off up there, but secretly wishing I was as strong and daring as you all. Push on to 14,000 with a warm heart of love and encouragement from us all back here Renee :-) We miss you and can’t wait for you to come back xxxxx

Posted by: Paul on 5/20/2015 at 4:22 am

May 17, 2015

Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Van Deventer and Team Make a Move

We woke to sunny skies, and the forecasted winds didn’t arrive down low where we were. After bagel, cream cheese, and bacon filled breakfast sandwiches we crashed our camp, loaded our sleds (more and more team members are naming their sleds each day - the better to curse them by), and started the climb up Ski Hill. The steeper terrain with all of the weight of our gear was a big effort, different from yesterday’s long miles with little elevation change, but the team handled it really well, and pulled into a cozy camp at 9500’ this evening. A big meal of Mac and cheese fortified with bacon put everyone into food comas, and were crawling into the sacks for the night. Tomorrow, we plan to move to 11k to really start the process of acclimating. That’s all the news from here. We’ll be in touch tomorrow.

RMI Guides Pete, Robby, Josh, and team.

Chris and team,
Happy to hear your able to start to climb to 11k….thinking of you all and hope acclimating goes well for you. 
Dad is TDY in Sunny California this week…it reached 91 today in DC…
Thinking good thoughts for all of you…stay safe…
love, Mom

Posted by: Dave and Melissa on 5/18/2015 at 5:08 pm

Pete my man…Happy Mon from flatlands of IN…Great expedition wishes amigo to you and your crew…You are the best…Godspeed…Waltero…Didn’t see any Primrose, nor Iris, Tulips, Colombine nor corn in that landscape - What gives ?

Posted by: Waltero on 5/18/2015 at 2:24 pm

May 16, 2015

Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Van Deventer & Team Fly on and Set Up Camp

May 16, 2015 1:09 am PT

Hi all,

While yesterday became a waiting game that ultimately left us sleeping in town for another night, this morning was sunny and blue, and immediately after breakfast, we loaded the planes and were off! The flight in was spectacular with great views of the range. After a couple hours of sorting loads, packing, and rigging, we walked out of base camp and on to the lower Kahiltna. We made great time, and now we are snugly tucked into camp after an eventful day. Time to catch some Zzzz. We’ll be in touch tomorrow.

RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Josh Maggard, Robby Young, and team

On The Map

Hi Renee, Tell Pete great they manage to do updates of how things are going. Hope the weather stays good and not too windy.The updates are good so family and friends don’t worry too much. Best of luck to you and the team. Sounds absolutely fantastic. Thinking of you.
lv Maureen

Posted by: Maureen Lococo on 5/17/2015 at 6:26 am

Thanks for the updates keeps us all informed that is awesome!!
Good morning Matt and Kevin hope you guys got a goodnight sleep stay safe and warm.
Dad and I pulled weeds got rid of the grass in the plants and mowed your yard looks great!!
Miss you Matt have a safe climb to the next up date :)
Love you mom xo

Posted by: Terri on 5/17/2015 at 5:37 am

May 15, 2015

Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Pete Van Deventer & Team Kahiltna Bound!

Yesterday we spent the whole day on hold here in Talkeetna. Today is a new day. This morning’s skies are clear and we’re loading up to go! We are off to climb Mount McKinley!

RMI Guide Pete Van Deventer

Jon and team members:
Happy that the weather permitted your flight.  Know that we are wishing you great weather for a safe climb.
With much love and aloha,
Hugs, Mom

Posted by: Kemai on 5/15/2015 at 7:49 pm

Godspeed Matt Godspeed team Pete ,Robby and Josh
We love you and proud of you Matt
Love mom dad and Michael

Posted by: Terri on 5/15/2015 at 5:39 pm

May 14, 2015

Denali - West Buttress Expedition

Mt. McKinley: Pete Van Deventer & Team are Rigged & Ready to Roll

Our team is assembled, or bags are packed, and we are ready to climb onboard the airplanes and take off! We spent today going through all of our gear, packing and repacking our bags, and sorting lunch food. With all of the details dialed in, we’re going to eat what is hopefully our last dinner in town for a few weeks, and catch some zzz’s. Tomorrow with any luck, we’ll board the planes first thing for one of the highlights of the trip: the stunning flight into Kahiltna Base Camp. We’ll be in touch!

RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Robby Young, Josh Maggard, and team

Ed and the team, Have a wonderful trip and wishing you great weather. So proud of you!

Posted by: Gayle Hutton on 5/16/2015 at 6:28 pm

Following your adventure Brian P. Best of Luck and keep the updates and photos rolling.

Posted by: Faisal M on 5/16/2015 at 5:25 pm

February 7, 2015


Aconcagua: Van Deventer & Team Celebrate in Mendoza

As the expedition draws to a close, the days come flying by in a blur. After a big descent to Aconcagua Base Camp with heavy packs, we fell into our sleeping bags and got one of the best nights of sleep of the trip. The group chose to fore go setting up tents and laid out sleeping bags in the big dining tent, and for the first time in many nights, we didn’t spend the whole night listening to the wind slap at our tents.  We woke in the morning, caffeinated up, and did a hasty pack job of the our duffels for the mules. We grabbed our day packs, light once again, and started off down the mule trails, retracing the paths we had walked two weeks earlier (ironically, most of the group didn’t remember much of it and was convinced that we were exiting a different way). While our packs were light, and our hiking shoes a lot more comfortable than our boots, the nearly 15 miles of rocky trail walking took about ten hours, and by the end, everyone’s dogs were far beyond barking.

Fortunately, the amazing arryaros were waiting at Pampe de Lenas, with the fire already started and meat on the grill.  The team feasted on more carne than we could possibly eat, especially with the shrunken stomachs that result from two weeks of high altitude living.  Once again, we chose to fore go the tents, and everyone unrolled pads and bags on the ground and watched the Southern Cross trace its arc across the canyon rim.  We woke early, and though everyone was feeling the previous couple of days, the motivation to finally reach the park entrance and be done trumped all of the physical discomforts. Three and half more hours brought us to the tree-lined aqueduct that signals the final stretch to the end of the long trail. We grabbed our dust covered bags from the mules and loaded a shuttle to Mendoza. With a quick stop for another huge meal, we were in Mendoza by evening, showering off the weeks of dust. 

We wrapped up the trip with another great culinary experience at El Patio Azul de Jesus Maria. We feasted on a traditional Argentinian parilla (bbq) with boundless different cuts of meat cooked slowly over a wood fire. Malbec was plentiful for washing the meal down, and was the perfect way to refuel after weeks up the mountain. Most of the group will spend the next two days in Mendoza, planning to explore the shops, rest by the pool, and perhaps tour a few vineyards, before we return to winter time in the States.

We would like to thank the whole team for the incredible team work that they displayed throughout the entire trip, the camaraderie, and the effort that each and every one put out. This was a group that was a pleasure for the guides to work with. Finally, I’d like to thank Alex and Juan for kicking ass the entire trip. The whole trip was a pleasure all the way around, and we’re already looking forward to next year!

RMI Guide Pete Van Deventer

Congratulations to team on an exciting adventure! It was a well deserved celebration! I’m looking forward to the stories and pictures Bruce. Safe travels home. xo

Posted by: Joyce Pully on 2/8/2015 at 4:40 am

February 4, 2015


Aconcagua: Van Deventer & Team Back to Base Camp

After nearly two weeks of progress moving in fits and starts, as we move camps, carry gear, and take rest days to acclimatize, the last several days suddenly start to rush by. We had a great, though very difficult, summit day yesterday. The sun shone in a completely clear, brilliant, azur sky, but as has been the nature of the last several days, the wind continued to rush on. We prepared in gusty conditions that made it uninviting to leave the tent, and donned our packs. For much of the climb we received only gusts, protected from the main force of the wind, the constant noise of which we couldn’t ignore. This region has received very little precipitation for the last several years, and the results of that were the second major challenge of the climb. Where snow fields usually provide nice cramponing, only sand existed, and climbing sand hills at 22,000 feet is no small task. We persisted, and at 2:45, crested the summit of Aconcagua.

Time flies, and while that was only yesterday afternoon, it feels much further removed. We woke this morning to the ever present wind gusts plastering the tent to our face, and packed our bags to head to base camp. As we descended, we picked up the items that we had cached at our previous camps, so our packs grew heavier, even as the air grew thicker. We arrived at base camp to a delicious spread, which was followed up shortly with our first carne dinner in a while. We organized our bags for the mules, and tomorrow we will reverse our course, once again carrying light day packs as we descend the Relinchos and Vacas Valleys back towards Penitentes, and ultimately Mendoza. Everyone is excited at the prospect of more beef, wine, and warm temperatures that await us in the coming days. Thanks for following,

RMI Guides Pete, Alex, Juan and team

On The Map

Congratulations to everyone! I was sorry to read about wind and sand but share your elation at completing the climb!

Posted by: Sally Falkenhagen on 2/5/2015 at 3:43 pm

Congratulations to everyone and get back safely!  Will look forward to hearing more about your accomplishment, Kevin, next time I’m in Easton!

Posted by: Jane Osman on 2/5/2015 at 4:40 am

February 3, 2015


Aconcagua: Van Deventer and Team Summit!

Pete Van Deventer and Team called into the RMI Expeditions Office to let us know they reached the summit of Aconcagua and are safely back at High Camp.  Pete will send a full report of their summit day after they rest and re-fuel.

Congratulations Team!

Fantastic job Kev! Congratulations to you and the team and continued success coming down.
Cheers to all!  Jeff Logeman

Posted by: Jeff Logeman on 2/5/2015 at 10:49 pm

Congratulations everyone!

Posted by: Ruthie on 2/5/2015 at 5:33 pm

February 2, 2015


Aconcagua: Van Deventer & Team in Position for Summit Bid

Though the tents shook with the wind again last night, the gusts came fewer and further between. As the sun rose this morning the gusts became rarer, and we decided that this was our day to move to our high camp at Colera (Spanish for anger, not the disease). We were still prepared to face strong winds as we moved into more exposed terrain on the way, but Aconcagua gave us a pass and we climbed with gentle breezes and brilliant sunshine the whole way. We are now settled in, working on heating water for dinner- which takes a long time at 19,600’- before we rack out early to prep for a hopeful summit attempt tomorrow. All of the days of hard work have gotten us here, and everyone is excited to be in place for the final push to our objective. We’ll be in touch tomorrow to let you know how it goes.
RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer, Alex Barber, Juan, and the team

On The Map

You mom asked me to tell you comgratulations on how far you went, She is very proud PBB.

Posted by: Joyce Pully on 2/3/2015 at 6:31 pm

So glad to hear weather will let you take your shot at the summit today.  We are all cheering you on from Fargo!

Posted by: Diann on 2/3/2015 at 6:32 am

January 31, 2015


Aconcagua: Van Deventer & Team Rest Day at Camp 2

The sun has been shining on us all day, and the temperatures are pleasant, but something has changed: early this morning the tents gave a foretelling rattle, and then the wind settled in. While the wind hasn’t been too strong yet, mostly it just makes a lot of noise, the forecast is hinting that the winds may strengthen tonight, and that they may persist for at least a week. We are hoping that they allow us to move up tomorrow, and that a forecasted lull may give us our shot. At this point, everything is ready for us and we are in Dr. Suess’ proverbial waiting place, so we just have our fingers crossed for our summit window to show itself. Keep your fingers crossed for us,

RMI Guide Pete Van Deventer, Juan, Alex, and team

On The Map

Fingers are crossed!
Sending calming vibes your way.
Good luck PBB and Team Van Deventer!!

Posted by: Joyce Pully on 1/31/2015 at 6:23 pm

Go Team Van Deventer and shout out to Bro Kevin Stitely..  wishing you fair skies, fair winds and strong backs, Stick the Flag in that one!!!!  J Dienes

Posted by: John Dienes on 1/31/2015 at 6:10 pm

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