#SkiTheBig3 14,200-Foot Denali Resort and Climber’s Rest Home

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | May 30, 2014      

Anton Sponar

Foraker on a rare clearing a couple nights ago.

Mount Foraker during a rare clearing a couple nights ago, as viewed from 14,200-foot Camp on Denali, Mount McKinley. That is indeed Sultana Ridge, nothing else like it.

It’s been a couple days since we walked into 14 Camp here on Denali, Alaska. This is the staging point for the truly high-altitude part of the climb, and also where weather often holds you up. Above here, bad weather is not just uncomfortable — it is dangerous.

Thus a series of storms have forced us into rest days. A few days ago, Evan, Aaron and I ventured back into our ski boots and went for a bit of riding by Braille. We skinned up about 1,000 feet above camp, in the area under the fixed lines where skiing is fairly common, and skied back down. Conditions were variable, but it still felt terrific to get out of the tent.

Aaron doing his best to feel his way down the ski hill above camp.

Braille is the operative word. Aaron doing his best to feel his way down the ski hill above camp.

It’s interesting watching as people patiently or perhaps impatiently pace around camp. Everyone is rather itchy to get up high, and I anticipate some pretty ridiculous traffic jams on the fixed lines when the weather clears this weekend.

 Aaron and Evan taking it back to town, or camp, however you choose to see it.

Aaron and Evan taking it back to town, or camp, however you choose to see it. That’s the camp at upper left in photo. The climbers are probably going for an acclimation day, but you never know. Sometimes people get crazy and go for the summit in the middle of unbelievable weather.


One Response to “#SkiTheBig3 14,200-Foot Denali Resort and Climber’s Rest Home”

  1. Kevin June 2nd, 2014 1:41 pm

    Wow Anton, what a great photo of Sultana! I really hope you guys get the right weather to get up Denali soon. Great to have the updates even after a few rest days. Thanks!

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