Jeff Kane called in from 17,200′! The team moved up to High Camp today. They could not get a dispatch out yesterday, but Jeff sends out belated Fourth of July salutations from the crew.
Yesterday, the team climbed up the steepest part of the route, which began with a 1400′ climb up moderate snow slopes to The Headwall, a 600′ section of snow and ice that kicks back to over 45 degrees. This stretch of route is protected by fixed lines, ropes anchored to the snow at intervals. The team clipped themselves into the fixed lines with mechanical ascenders (climber-speak for rope clamps) for security.
Today, they re-climbed The Headwall and continued up another 1000′ of fun climbing along a stunning ridge to arrive at High Camp. The plan for tomorrow is to take a rest day, well-deserved after today’s hard ascent of 3000′. Then, the team will look for the first day of good weather to make a summit bid.
Here’s Jeff –