Entries By walter hailes

Mt. Rainier: August 2nd Update

Posted by: Walter Hailes, Solveig Waterfall | August 02, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The Mt. Rainier summit climbs, led by Walter Hailes and Solveig Waterfall, reached the summit this morning.  They reported 15-20 mph winds and were descending through a light cap over the mountain.  The teams began their descent at 7:30 a.m.

The Cowlitz Glacier towards Cathedral Ridge and Lil Tahoma, Mt. Rainier. Photo: RMI Collection
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Mt. Rainier: Four Day Summit Climbs Team on the Summit!

Posted by: Pete Van Deventer, Walter Hailes | July 29, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The Four Day Summit Climb teams July 26 - 29, 2014 led by RMI Guides Pete Van Deventer and Walter Hailes reached the summit of Mt. Rainier at 6:45 a.m with climbers from Wilderness Ventures.  The teams reported light winds and great route conditions.  They started their descent from the crater rim around 7:45 am.  The teams will return to Camp Muir and then continue to Paradise later this afternoon.

Congratulations to today’s Summit Climb Teams!

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Mt. Rainier: July 10th Summit!

Posted by: Jake Beren, Zeb Blais, Walter Hailes | July 10, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The RMI Four Day Summit Climbs led by RMI Guides Jake Beren and Zeb Blais reached the top of Mt. Rainier early this morning.  At 7:15 the teams were descending Disappointment Cleaver en route back to Camp Muir.  The teams are doing well and enjoying the blue skies and calm weather.

The Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons led by RMI Guide Walter Hailes reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning via the Emmons Glacier route.  The team has descended to Camp Schurman where they will spend the night before returning to Ashford tomorrow.

Congratulations to Today’s Teams!

A RMI Team practicing rope travel on Mt. Rainier.  Photo: Win Whittaker Snow School on Mt. Rainier in July. Photo: Win Whittaker Learning basic mountaineering techniques on Mt. Rainier in July. Photo: Win Whittaker The view of Mt. Rainier and the Emmons Glacier from Sunrise. Photo: Mt. Rainier Web Cam
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Mt. Rainier: Four Day Summit Climbs on top!

Posted by: Brent Okita, Walter Hailes | July 04, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The Four Day Summit Climbs led by RMI Guides Brent Okita and Walter Hailes reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning.  Brent reported clear and warm conditions.  The teams are enjoying some time on the summit.  They will return to Camp Muir later this morning and then continue their descent to Paradise.  We look forward to seeing them at Rainier BaseCamp this afternoon.

Congratulations to today’s Summit Climb Teams!

Happy Independence Day!

Climbers approaching the summit of Mt. Rainier.  Photo: Seth Waterfall
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Mt. Rainier: June 19th Update

Posted by: Seth Waterfall, Walter Hailes, Solveig Waterfall | June 19, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

RMI Guide Seth Waterfall and the Four Day Summit Climb teams were approaching the crater rim at 7:29 a.m. PT.  They reported very cold and very windy conditions on the Disappointment Cleaver Route.  The teams will be starting their descent soon after reaching the summit.

RMI Guide Solveig Waterfall and the Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons aborted their summit bid at 13,200’ due to high winds and blowing snow. They are descending back to Camp Schurman.

An RMI team on top of Mt. Rainier. Photo: RMI Collection
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Mt. Rainier: June 15th Update

Posted by: Walter Hailes, Alex Barber, Bridget Belliveau | June 15, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Mount Rainier
Elevation: 14,410'

The Four Day Summit Climb led by Walter Hailes reached the summit of Mt. Rainier this morning around 7:40 am.  The team spent an hour on the summit with clear skies around them.  Walter reported a cloud deck at approximately 8,500’ and decreasing winds.  The team began their descent just before 9 a.m.

Happy Father’s Day!

An RMI team taking a break at Ingraham Flats on Mt. Rainier. Photo: Seth Waterfall

Aconcagua: Nugent and Team back in Mendoza

Posted by: Walter Hailes, Katrina Bloemsma, Billy Nugent | January 22, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Aconcagua

Thanks to everyone that have followed along… The team is back in Mendoza and enjoying some of the finer things in life: food, wine, sunshine, hanging by the pool, etc. We had a great team dinner last night and are now hanging out and lazing around while we wait for our flights back to the states and Canada. Despite not getting the summit we had a ton of fun and a hell of an adventure. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the group for being fun, hard-working, and determined.

‘til next year,

RMI Guides Billy Nugent, Walter Hailes and Katrina Bolemsma

Aconcagua. RMI Photo Collection

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Aconcagua: Nugent & Team at Pampa de las Lenas for the Night

Posted by: Billy Nugent, Walter Hailes, Katrina Bloemsma | January 20, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Aconcagua
Elevation: 9,000'

Hey everybody out there in RMI adventure blog land. Billy here, I’m checking in with our group from Pampa de las Lenas after our walk down from Base Camp today. Hot and sunny, lots of river crossings, sore feet but some of the mule drivers are cooking up a steak asado dinner for us tonight, and then we’ll hit the sack. Tomorrow we’ll continue our walk out of the Vacas Valley and hit the road, and then head back to Mendoza. So the next check in, we’ll be saying hello from the hotel in Mendoza. And that’s all for now.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

Trekking through the Vacas Valley. Photo: Tyler Reid


Billy Nugent calls in from Pampa de las Lenas.

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Aconcagua: Nugent & Team Return to Base Camp

Posted by: Billy Nugent, Katrina Bloemsma, Walter Hailes | January 20, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Aconcagua
Elevation: 13,800'

Hey everybody,
This is Billy.  I’m back at Base Camp with the whole crew.  We are all a little bit bummed out but happy to be back down at least with the thicker air here and looking forward to a home cooked meal tonight from the Grajales staff.  It was a tough day up there yesterday and we spent most of the day today with heavy, heavy walk down.  But everybody’s in good spirits for the most part and we’ll check in again later on as we walk out from Aconcagua.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent


RMI Guide Billy Nugent checks in from Aconcagua Base Camp on their descent.

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Aconcagua: Nugent & Team Forced to Turn Back on Summit Attempt

Posted by: Katrina Bloemsma, Billy Nugent, Walter Hailes | January 18, 2014
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Aconcagua
Elevation: 21,500'

It’s a cold, cold world.

We woke up and fired the stoves at about 3:30 this morning and things were looking good: clear skies, bright moon, and calm winds. We scarfed a quick breakfast, had a quick cup of coffee, packed up, and hit the not so dusty trail. The consistent snowfall of the past week has blanketed the mountain so what is normally a gravelly trail out of Cólera was a very snowy sendero. Our team moved well, per the norm, despite the large number of other climbers clogging the route and before too long we had climbed past the Indepencia Hut (ruins) and hit the traverse into the Canaleta. At some point along the way we found ourselves no longer enjoying the clear skies but instead traveling under consistent snowfall. In fact it was snowing heavily and visibility was poor. Despite the worsening weather the snowpack seemed ok until we reached the center of the traverse. Walt and myself headed out further without the group and found the normally gravelly trail under several feet of snow. In fact the whole Canaleta was smoothed over with the storm snow. Every other team on the mountain had already turned around due to avalanche hazard but we hadn’t seen anything worth turning around until the deep storm layer that we encountered in the lower Canaleta. While the snow didn’t seem super reactive the steeper part of the Canaleta was surely more dangerous and there was no way to see without exposing ourselves to the hazard. With worsening weather and continued snowfall we decided that the dire consequences of an incident were too much for us to shoulder. We weren’t willing to bet our lives on it so we did the smart thing and turned around at 21,500’. Now we are back at high camp and the weather is still crappy. So much for the forecasted sunny day…

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

The traverse to the Caneleta en route to the summit of Aconcagua.  Photo: RMI Collection

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