Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Denali Team 1: May 1 - 21 Dispatch #8

Denali Team 1: May 1 - 21

Guides: Kurt Hicks, Dan Otter, Aili Farquhar

Climbers: Izabela Smolokowska (Warsaw, Poland), James Haydock (Dublin, Ireland), Ardeshir Yaftebbi, Iwan Irawan, Fajri Al Luthfi, Martin Rimbawan, Popo Fajar Sidik, and Nurhuda (all from Indonesia).

Kurt called with a dispatch at 4:30 PM on May 4th.

Today's objective is to move to Camp 2 at 11,200’/3413m.  Everything has been going well, and we are a good way there.  We are currently sitting on Kahiltna Pass, and we have just a few more hours of climbing to do today.   The loads are heavy, but everyone has been dealing with them extremely well and moving comfortably at a good, steady pace.

Our plan for tomorrow is to have a rest for a good part of the day and to use some of it to descend and retrieve the cache that we have at 10,500 feet.  It will be a good day for everyone – not too hard and more easy-paced acclimatization.

Everyone's getting along really well on this crew.  We’re enjoying each other’s company and joking around a lot.  The guides have been giving Fajri a hard time about his girlfriend back home, and he’s still trying to figure out what we mean by it all.

We’ve been eating very well – but here’s something that pretty funny.   Cous cous, the famous Middle Eastern dish, sounds somewhat like a word that means  "small monkey" in Indonesia, so our Indonesian team members are pretending to complain about being forced to eat "monkey pasta" on Denali.  We tell them how serious we are about being original in our menu planning!

In other news on birds, I forgot to mention that at basecamp a few days ago, we saw a guy in a chicken suit.  Figure that out.  There’s lots of ways to occupy your time on Denali, but this is a new one on us!

Everyone says hi to their family and friends back home.  We’re all doing really well and are happy to be on this great mountain!

Until next time...”

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