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Entries from Denali

Denali Expedition: Hahn & Team Arrive in Alaska

Tuesday, June 11, 2024 - 10:17 pm PT

Our climbing team came together today.  After years of planning and anticipation and training… twelve of us got together in the Anchorage airport and got started on RMI’s final Denali Expedition for 2024.   We made it with all of our gear and without flight cancellations… it all worked out.   We boarded the Denali Overland van for the big drive up to Talkeetna.  The windshield wipers were on for much of the journey and the spectacular mountain vistas were… shrouded, for the most part.  We broke up the trip with a stop at the last big supermarkets -in Wasilla- where we rounded out the trip menu with some fresh food for down low on the mountain.  We got back in the van then and made it up to Talkeetna by 5:30 PM.  Having settled our gear in the airplane hangar, we checked in to the comfortable Swiss Alaska Inn and then made the short hike over the railroad tracks and into downtown Talkeetna.  The rain seemed to be keeping the tourists in check so we had a quiet dinner at the brewery and then walked down to the mighty Susitna River to gaze at the water and the clouds (where there might normally be mountains).   The team then walked past a few perfectly good bars and watering holes to turn in early and be ready for what promises to be a big day of packing and prepping for the climb tomorrow. 

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Get this one done Dave.

Posted by: Colin Dwyer on 6/12/2024 at 11:52 am

Fuel up and have a great adventure!  Will be watching back home.

Posted by: Mark Miola on 6/12/2024 at 10:48 am

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Move to 14,000’ Camp

Tuesday, June 11, 2024 - 11:29 pm PT

Good evening readers!

Today we woke to squirrely clouds, moving in and out. Snow would start and stop. We dragged our feet and when the weather looked right we made our move. It was a long, heavy, tiring move to 14,000' Camp. It snowed for parts of it, we were in the clouds for most of it, and had a few moments of blasts of heat. The team did well and is excited to be one step closer. We ate a late dinner of mac and cheese and are now snuggled in our sleeping bags. Everyone has earned a good night's rest. Tomorrow we will back carry and then relax the rest of the afternoon. Thanks for the good weather vibes. Keep them coming!

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Glad for the updates. Keep it up Shane!! Our prayers are with you and the rest of the group.

Sonny D

Posted by: Sonny Digiovanna on 6/12/2024 at 12:03 pm

Cheering you all on!!

Posted by: Danielle Netherton on 6/12/2024 at 9:17 am

Denali Expedition: Cifelli & Team Packed and Ready to Fly to Basecamp!

The team has arrived in Talkeetna with all of our bags!

Yesterday, we spent the day doing the hard work of packing for a three week expedition. It's hard to visualize how much you'll actually need and hard to come to terms with the sheer weight of the equipment needed for a Denali Expedition.

There are no porters here. We have to carry everything we need on our own backs, but that is what makes Denali special. You can't pay your way to the top.

We’re currently loading up the planes and trying to fly to Basecamp. Wish us luck! 

RMI Guides Dominic Cifelli, Seth Burns, Nicole DePetris and team

PC: Dominic Cifelli

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Rossi - Dominate the mountain!  You got this!

Posted by: Wayne Johnson on 6/11/2024 at 4:27 pm

Peace and safe travels!

Posted by: Mr. Roboto on 6/11/2024 at 4:25 pm

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Enjoy Quiet Trail When Retrieving Gear

Monday, June 10, 2024

Good evening all,
Today was a good day. Today we made our carry to 13,500'. The skies were mostly clear with no breeze. We were the first team out of camp. We didn't see another team until we headed back down. The route was in great condition which made for smooth walking. We are getting closer and closer to our goal but we still have many days ahead of us. Many hard days ahead of us. We made it back to camp just as it started to snow. The snow hasn't stopped since.  We aren't sure what tomorrow will bring. If the weather is good, we will move. If the weather isn't good we will rest up for when it is good. Keep sending those good weather vibes!

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Go get em Shane. Your neighbors in are pulling for you.

Posted by: Dennis R.A. McNulty on 6/12/2024 at 4:27 am

Shane, since this is the info you’re needing while out there, I figured I’d send an update. We had ramen night tonight at home - amazing! It’s going to be a weekly thing for sure! Excited for another update from your end tomorrow, we’re sending all the good weather vibes to you all!!

Posted by: Tara Kallembach on 6/11/2024 at 7:29 pm

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Take Rest Day with Chess Tournament

Hello again,

Today we decided to take our rest day. All night the wind battered our tents and send snow swirling between the rain fly and tent body. The gusts kept up until the morning but later subsided and turned into a calm, bright, hot day. The team enjoyed the warm weather. They occupied themselves with a chest tournament. They are currently playing for seeding. Tomorrow we are looking to make our carry to 13,600' and Tuesday move to 14,000' Camp. Weather looks to be in our favor, so keep sending those good weather vibes our way the next couple days. Now we must catch some sleep for our day tomorrow. 

Goodnight all,

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Helloooo Tommy from Sunriver!
Keep up the good work.  Love you miss you! 

Chess?  You have this hands down.  I’m sure you’re in the finals, if I had to place a bet.

Posted by: Linda Barrow on 6/11/2024 at 8:51 am

Hey Hannah!!!
Have you told your team they have one of the BEST guides?!?! Ok I will….“Hey Hannah’s team, You all have one of the Best guides out there!!”
Climb Strong!!
Farmer Dave

Posted by: Dave Kestel on 6/11/2024 at 3:30 am

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Retrieve Cache, Rest and Acclimatize at 11,000ft Camp

Saturday, June 8, 2024 - 8:55 pm PT

Greetings readers!

Today we had a casual morning eating breakfast burritos and sipping coffee. By 9:50am we were packed and roped uo for our back carry to our 9300' cache. A light wind kept the temps down and the team made fast work getting to the cache. After a bit of digging we retrieved all our things, packed it all up and headed back uphill. Up, down, up, down, sleep, eat, and repeat is the the name of the game out here. If you ain't walking you are sleeping or eating. After a bit of rest in the afternoon we reviewed walking in our crampons and packed for our carry to 13,600'. If the winds don't turn up which they are forecasted to, we will carry our gear and get in position to move to 14,000' Camp. The team is very eager to get up there. But we have to take our time and properly allow our bodies to compensate to the decrease in oxygen molecules up here. As I write the winds are picking up but maybe they will get it out of its system during the night.  So goodnight all and send those good weather vibes.

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Hey Hannah and Team! All the best wishes for calm winds and sunny skies for your move up hill!! Climb high! Climb Strong!!!
Farmer Dave

Posted by: Dave Kestel on 6/10/2024 at 3:32 am

Sending you good weather vibes!

Posted by: Shannon R Smith on 6/9/2024 at 3:37 pm

Denali Expedition: Smith and Team move to 11,000’ Camp

Friday, June 8, 2024 8:43 pm PDT

Good evening readers!

We are writing to you from 11k Camp. Our day started early with an alpine start thinking it was going to be the wee hours of the morning when the weather would clear. That turned out to be incorrect. We woke to white all around us. We were in a cloud. You could barely see the tents up glacier. We dragged our feet and took a nap. After a few hours the clouds started to lift so we packed up our camp.

The walking was tough today. The trail Had been blown in with lots of snow. The trail breaking was slow and exhausting but we made hung in there and rolled into 11k Camp. Feels good to be higher on the mountain. Just one step closer to our goal. At dinner we filled our bellies with Annie's Mac and Cheese and now we are all ready for a much-deserved sleep. We are all looking forward to uninterrupted sleep tonight. Tomorrow we will head back downhill to our cache to be reunited with our gear.

Goodnight, all!

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Nothing to it but to do it. Onward and upwards

Posted by: PCash on 6/9/2024 at 6:28 am

Nice, guys! What a beautiful picture! Shane, hopefully that dried broccoli went right in the mac nom nom. Excited for the next update!

Posted by: Tara Kallembach on 6/8/2024 at 9:33 am

Denali Expedition: Smith and Team Lay Low

Thursday, June 6, 2024 6:11pm PDT

Hello readers!

The snow pitter pattered all night. With every tap to the side of the tent snow slides off. It was a winter wonderland. White surrounded us. You could see nothing but white. With visibility being low and tents wet, we decided to lay low and hang tight for the day. The team rested and the snow Fell most of the day. Towards the late afternoon the base of the peaks became visible. An optimistic sign that maybe the weather is letting up. We are Hopeful that we can get still move to 11k camp in an alpine start fashion much like we do on Rainier. So, after dinner we are going to rest a few hours and hopefully the weather is descent, and we can make our move.

Wish us luck and send good weather vibes.

RMI Guide Hannah Smith and Team

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Hi Tommy and group, wishing you all the best of luck for better weather and a successful climb. And thank you for all the updates.

Posted by: Jen Mackenzie on 6/8/2024 at 12:18 am

Hi Tommy MacKenzie,
We love you!  Michael and I say hi! 

I hope you are doing well and you have good conditions. 

Wishing everyone a safe and wonderful experience❤️

Posted by: Linda Barrow on 6/7/2024 at 5:53 pm

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Carry Gear to 9,300ft

Wednesday, June 5, 2024 - 8:25 pm PT

Good evening everyone. Today we woke to clear skies above with clouds lingering over Denali. So it was go time to get our carry in. We knew the storm would come sooner or later so we got an early start and we walking by 5am. Fueled by bagels, cream cheese, and salmon we made our way up Ski Hill. The cool air felt good to walk in compared to the rather hot and sweaty walk yesterday. After gaining two thousand feet and the beginning of snow flurries, we decided to call 9300' our cache spot. We dug a big hole to fit all our cache items and then scurried out of there before more snow fell. The rest of the day we enjoyed a bunch of tent time which included naps, reading, watching shows, listening to music, and eating snacks. Some of the best sleep comes in the afternoon. Tomorrow we hope to move to 11,000' camp. This will depend on what the weather brings us in the morning. We may need to be patient but that's part of the Denali game. As for now, we are all settling into our sleeping bags as the snow pitter patters on our tents. It's quite relaxing. So goodnight all!

RMI Guide Hannah And team

Leave a Comment For the Team

Denali Expedition: Smith & Team Check in from the Glacier

Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Hello followers!

Today was a big day! Skies were clear which meant we would be flying. The team got their last lattes and drip coffees before making their way to the hanger. The pilot told us half the team would fly then he would come back for the rest of us. This gave the team time to get dialed with sled rigging and tent set up before arriving on the glacier and for those on the glacier time to learn too. As always the flight in was amazing. The views are stunning. The peaks of the Alaska Range are rocky and snowy and big. A bumpy landing got the team all safely on the glacier. The pilots are truly amazing at what they do. After some quick work shuffling gear and rigging up we hit the Kahiltna glacier running. Well not running. Slowly waddling in our snowshoes and heavy packs. We crushed the downhill and made smooth work of the uphill. You can tell the team did great training and it sure paid off with the smooth sailing we had getting to camp. It's all a learning curve right now, trying to get in a groove setting up camp. In a couple days we will be smooth as butter at it. Pizza for dinner always makes the heart and stomach happy. Our outdoor seating had amazing views of the surrounding peaks. Tomorrow we will hopefully do a carry to 9,600' give or take. We are hoping the storm stays away or at least gives us the morning/early afternoon. As for now, we are all getting our gear organized and into our sleeping bags for a well deserved rest.

Goodnight everyone!

RMI Guide Hannah Smith

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Hey Hannah!
I’m sending all the best thoughts and prayers for Perfect weather for you and your team!!!
Farmer Dave

Posted by: Dave Kestel on 6/6/2024 at 3:46 am

Great start to a great adventure! We’re so proud of you Dada! Stay safe and stay warm!

Posted by: Jessica on 6/5/2024 at 10:52 pm

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