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Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Wed Dec 16, 2020 6:04 pm
by Jaro
Definitely loving the stoke & will send out some more PM’s this week.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Wed Dec 16, 2020 6:40 pm
by cougar
Don't give up on your dreams, stay asleep

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Wed Dec 16, 2020 11:16 pm
by NathanRL
Add me to the list of folks on the Front Range who want to get up Denali (and, ideally, ski it) more than just about any other objective out there. I've got no glacier experience though, so hopefully Rainier et al. this summer and Denali the next.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:14 am
by justiner
I dream of Igikpak myself.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:53 am
by sdkeil
I dreamt of it and ended up doing it back in 2013. It was one of the best adventures I would never do again haha! The highlights was having a great team and we did it all unguided. The views, the experience, and comradery are all very special, but there is a fair amount of repetitiveness to the mountain that slowly grinds down your will. Like I said the best adventure I would never do again (of course I never follow my own advice either :-D ). If you are planning to do this adventure unguided USAKeller's TR on our trip is probably one of the best write-ups you can find on the internets. If you have other questions I still some of our planning tools and equipment checklists. Good luck in your quest! -S

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 7:44 am
by I Man
The Central Alaska Range is probably my favorite place on Earth. Yiu should definitely make this happen. It's worth it

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:43 am
by jscully205
A few pieces of some unsolicited advice I can give that you may or may not already know:

Have clothes for the lower mountain and upper mountain. It can get really warm on the lower mountain. A sunhoody I learned, was a very underrated piece. I used 100SPF sunscreen too and glad I did.

Get as fit as you can and do a lot of winter camping to dial in your systems. Denali is really physical and you'll accumulate fatigue the further you get into the expedition. How quickly you recover and how efficient you are is critical. I'd say the 11k to 14k camp after the first carry is the hardest day.

Picking your teammates wisely is super important and could make or break your trip. There's a lot of down time on Denali and you want to be around people of similar mindset and stoke levels. People that don't let the weather get to them. Personality differences are amplified on a expedition. For instance, If something is bothering you about someone back here, it will really get to you high on the mountain. Best to shake things out beforehand. Also, if everyone on your team is from CO, the acclimatization schedule will probably be different than if you have teammates coming from lower altitude. Something to consider.

Speaking of weather. Move and advance up the mountain on marginal weather days. Not storms, but if it's just light snow and/or fog, you can still carry or move.

Finally, try to have fun on a big long winter camping trip. It's not out of the question that you might end up with a PhD in snow shoveling by the end!

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:51 am
by I Man
jscully205 wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:43 am
A few pieces of some unsolicited advice I can give that you may or may not already know:

Have clothes for the lower mountain and upper mountain. It can get really warm on the lower mountain. A sunhoody I learned, was a very underrated piece. I used 100SPF sunscreen too and glad I did.

Get as fit as you can and do a lot of winter camping to dial in your systems. Denali is really physical and you'll accumulate fatigue the further you get into the expedition. How quickly you recover and how efficient you are is critical. I'd say the 11k to 14k camp after the first carry is the hardest day.

Picking your teammates wisely is super important and could make or break your trip. There's a lot of down time on Denali and you want to be around people of similar mindset and stoke levels. People that don't let the weather get to them. Personality differences are amplified on a expedition. For instance, If something is bothering you about someone back here, it will really get to you high on the mountain. Best to shake things out beforehand. Also, if everyone on your team is from CO, the acclimatization schedule will probably be different than if you have teammates coming from lower altitude. Something to consider.

Speaking of weather. Move and advance up the mountain on marginal weather days. Not storms, but if it's just light snow and/or fog, you can still carry or move.

Finally, try to have fun on a big long winter camping trip. It's not out of the question that you might end up with a PhD in snow shoveling by the end!
This is all really good advice. Even if Denali is a "tourist mountain" to many, it is still quite difficult. Alaska is the most difficult range/area I have climbed in, including the Andes and the Karakorum.

This may be somewhat controversial, but I think the single biggest thing you can do to maximize your chance of success is to be fit and skilled enough to summit from 14k. There are numerous reasons to skip 17 camp. I would be happy to elaborate if you are interested.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 12:18 pm
by CaptCO
Thanks fellas. I’m under the impression very few people attempt with snowshoes, and it is worth learning how to skin with a sled, is this correct?

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 12:20 pm
by Will_E
I Man wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:51 am
jscully205 wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:43 am
A few pieces of some unsolicited advice I can give that you may or may not already know:

Have clothes for the lower mountain and upper mountain. It can get really warm on the lower mountain. A sunhoody I learned, was a very underrated piece. I used 100SPF sunscreen too and glad I did.

Get as fit as you can and do a lot of winter camping to dial in your systems. Denali is really physical and you'll accumulate fatigue the further you get into the expedition. How quickly you recover and how efficient you are is critical. I'd say the 11k to 14k camp after the first carry is the hardest day.

Picking your teammates wisely is super important and could make or break your trip. There's a lot of down time on Denali and you want to be around people of similar mindset and stoke levels. People that don't let the weather get to them. Personality differences are amplified on a expedition. For instance, If something is bothering you about someone back here, it will really get to you high on the mountain. Best to shake things out beforehand. Also, if everyone on your team is from CO, the acclimatization schedule will probably be different than if you have teammates coming from lower altitude. Something to consider.

Speaking of weather. Move and advance up the mountain on marginal weather days. Not storms, but if it's just light snow and/or fog, you can still carry or move.

Finally, try to have fun on a big long winter camping trip. It's not out of the question that you might end up with a PhD in snow shoveling by the end!
This is all really good advice. Even if Denali is a "tourist mountain" to many, it is still quite difficult. Alaska is the most difficult range/area I have climbed in, including the Andes and the Karakorum.

This may be somewhat controversial, but I think the single biggest thing you can do to maximize your chance of success is to be fit and skilled enough to summit from 14k. There are numerous reasons to skip 17 camp. I would be happy to elaborate if you are interested.
That’s the way I’d like to do it, doing a big day from 14k to summit. But finding partners with that kind of endurance/fitness may prove challenging.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2020 12:23 pm
by I Man
CaptCO wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 12:18 pm
Thanks fellas. I’m under the impression very few people attempt with snowshoes, and it is worth learning how to skin with a sled, is this correct?
Plenty of people use snowshoes. I did the 1st time I was there, and used skis the 2nd two times. I used silvretta bindings and Spantiks. I also can't ski. I found myself walking downhill carrying my skis at times, especially with the heavy sled. All that being said, skis are just better in general for easy glaciers. If you are not a skiier, Sivretta bindings are great so you don't need to bring a second pair of boots.

It is also safer on skis if you are unroped on the glacier.

I would say half of the people on the mountain use snowshoes.

Re: Do you too dream of Denali?

Posted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 9:25 am
by Squirrellysquirrel
Took me a minute to locate, see pictures, I’ve studied the West Buttress route. Comfortable camping and hiking in snow conditions. Have a few international climbs under my belt, highest climbs are in snow conditions 17.4k and 18.5k.

Pretty easy going, SAR, WEMT, AIARE coursework, etc... and after the recent CAIC bulletins: I’ve been asked to expand my winter hiking group to more than just myself. Either way, be interested in training for it, if you still have room in your group!