Tuesday, July 5, 2016

2017 Ecuador Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition (July 1 - July 10) - Dispatch 1



July 4th Dispatch via Email

Ecuador July 1 - July 10, 2016 Cayambe/Antisana Skills Expedition

Climbers:

Patricia Alcivar
Norma Vogel
Ricardo Castillo
Juan Castillo
Srdja Zekovic
Anthony Schuchardt
Rodger Gilchrist


Hello friends and family!

This is Fredy Tipan checking in from Ecuador High Altitude Expedition.  On Saturday, July 2nd,  we had a great day traveling to the equator and then a little further north to the town and big market of Otavalo.

Then yesterday, we met at 7 am – after an early breakfast, jumped in our van with day packs, and headed to the trailhead of Cerro Pasochoa, a 13.779-foot extinct volcano that rises amidst beautiful grasslands and which has really nice rock outcrops up high.  Once in the parking lot and before the climb, we prepared delicious sandwiches.

Everyone was psyched to do our first acclimatization hike on a big peak.  This is a very motivated group of individuals, and we all reached the summit by 1:30 pm.  Despite being pretty tired and a bit short breath, everybody celebrated happily, took some awesome pictures, and returned down to our van in very good time.  I think everyone enjoyed the scenery a lot as well as the exercise and the acclimatization that we gained.

Today (the 4th of July) after having a great breakfast at Reina Isabel Hotel, we drove to the Pichincha TelefĂ©rico (gondola station) which carried us up to 13.700 feet where we got on a trail and started hiking up to Rucu Pichincha.  Rucu is a 15.420-foot peak, and all the team members did an excellent job climbing up the steep slopes and the rock scrambling sections.  After hiking for about 3 ½ hours, we reached the summit. We took some amazing pictures and had a good lunch on the summit. We hiked back to the gondola, descended to meet our bus, and headed north.

We are now at Guachala, an ancient and cozy hacienda built in the 16th Century.  Here we are – safe and sound, and I am writing this just before heading to dinner.  The hacienda's chef prepares really good meals, and we are all looking forward to ours!

Our next climbing goal is Ecuador's 3rd highest peak, Cayambe.  Tomorrow the 5th we will move up to the hut on Cayambe and take some time to review and improve climbing skills in preparation for the ascent.  Were having a great time and will be back in touch as soon as possible and give you the latest news!




-Fredy Tipan
IFMGA-UIAGM Certified Mountain Guide

Thursday, June 30, 2016

2016 Denali West Buttress Team 7 (June 13 - July 3) Dispatch 12

June 30, 2016

Guides:
Andy Stephen
Jeremy Devine

Climbers:

Steve Jacobs
Teija Sirko
Alan Millard
Mike Snelling
James Black

After hauling heavy sleds through the night while the lower Kahiltna glacier was frozen, we arrived back at basecamp, were greeted by clear skies, and flew back to Talkeetna around 9am. We had a very successful trip, thank you all for following along! - Andy

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

2016 Denali West Buttress Team 7 (June 13 - July 3) Dispatch 11

June 28, 2016

Guides:
Andy Stephen
Jeremy Devine

Climbers:

Steve Jacobs
Teija Sirko
Alan Millard
Mike Snelling
James Black

Team 7 dispatch June 28- we are sitting at camp 3 again, waiting out weather and eating tons of food to Lighten our loads to basecamp. We are planning on heading out to basecamp tonight while the lower glacier is Still frozen. Being the last AAI trip on the mountain, we are taking extra gear down with us that has been Used by previous trips, so it will be a difficult night, but we will be drinking celebratory beer for breakfast at basecamp tomorrow morning while we wait for our flight back to civilization. Cheers! -Andy


Monday, June 27, 2016

2016 Denali West Buttress Team 6 (June 6 - 26) Dispatch 12

June 27, 2016

Guides:

Paul Ivaska
Jim Mediatore
Angela Henderson

Climbers:

Gerard Hackett
Jeb Burchenal
Michael Henry
Timo Smuts
Cyprian Z
John Carswell
Hideyasu Nishi

AAI lead guide Paul Ivaska called us earlier today to let everyone know Team 6 has made their way back down to Base Camp. They were still waiting for flyable weather when they called at 10:30am Alaska time, before K2 Aviation could come pick them up and fly everyone off the mountain. We are hoping to hear of Team 6 safely arriving back in Talkeetna, if they have not already arrived.


2016 Denali West Buttress Team 7 (June 13 - July 3) Dispatch 10 Summit Day!

June 25, 2016

Guides:
Andy Stephen
Jeremy Devine

Climbers:

Steve Jacobs
Teija Sirko
Alan Millard
Mike Snelling
James Black

Team 7 dispatch - I am writing this from the top of North America! The weather is the nicest I've ever seen for a summit day, and the team is so excited to be up here. Much love to all of you out there, see you soon - Andy

Saturday, June 25, 2016

2016 Denali West Buttress Team 7 (June 13 - July 3) Dispatch 9

June 24, 2016

Guides:
Andy Stephen
Jeremy Devine

Climbers:

Steve Jacobs
Teija Sirko
Alan Millard
Mike Snelling
James Black

Team 7 had an awesome acclimatization day to 16300 ft, with absolutely beautiful weather, although it got pretty darn hot this afternoon. This evening we ate mondo burritos, and were visited by a successful team 6 on their way back to basecamp. Tomorrow we will move to high camp, hopefully in weather as nice as we had today. That's all til tomorrow! -Andy

2016 Denali West Buttress Team 6 (June 6 - 26) Dispatch 11 Made the Summit!

June 24, 2016

Guides:

Paul Ivaska
Jim Mediatore
Angela Henderson

Climbers:

Gerard Hackett
Jeb Burchenal
Michael Henry
Timo Smuts
Cyprian Z
John Carswell
Hideyasu Nishi

Team 6 has made the summit and is on their way back down. Everyone is doing well!