Denali Dispatch #1: Arriving on the Glacier

by Jason Kolaczkowski
CMC Denali Team Leader

We were fortunate to get on the glacier at the first possible opportunity, immediately following our check-in with the National Park Service.

So, we had ample time to get our gear organized and then make the five hour trek (that’s how slowly you go when you’re hauling 110lbs) to Camp 1. The weather has remained cold even low on the mountain. That made the snow bridges much more stable.

We always intended to move at night this first day, and the strategy proved useful with a warn track on crunchy, still frozen snow making for “easier” sled pulling.

Right now, it looks like we’ll be getting light-to-moderate snow storms in the evenings (continuing into the mornings) through Thursday. We may be sitting out a storm Wednesday/Thursday. But slightly cold temps on Monday and Tuesday will help us make the most of those two days while we are low. The plan would then to be to move in the afternoons.

Right now it is looking like Friday and the weekend will see a warming trend.

If this forecast holds, it may prove ideal for us, as we can get some quality acclimatization in while high up on the mountain, later this week while keeping the lower mountain colder and relatively crevasse safe in the early week.

So far so good!

Jason

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