May 12 West Buttress Team – Meet the Team!

Denali expedition

Denali, as seen from the south.

Our May 12th team will congregate in Anchorage, Alaska to finalize their preparations and complete their packing before heading farther north to attempt an ascent of the classic West Buttress route of Denali.  Denali is a beacon for climbers from around the world and this team is representative of that spirit of camaraderie that transcends national boundaries.  We have climbers from numerous countries joining together in a common purpose, that is to form a team that will work together to have a grand adventure on one of the most challenging mountains on our planet.

  • Kevin Moran is joining us from Michigan.
  • Silvia Vasquez-Lavado is joining us from California.
  • Hilde Vollan has come from Norway to join our team.
  • Cyrille Penssion is joining us from France.
  • Patrick (Seguin) Lucien is also from France.
  • Thomas Van Hoomissen is an Alaskan.

The Mountain Trip  Guides for this climb will be:

  • Rob “Durny” Durnell from Alaska
  • Heather Thamm from Alaska
  • Gary Falk from Colorado

The team will meet in Anchorage on May 12 and will depart for the small, end of the road (literally!) town of Talkeetna the following day.  The drive takes roughly two hours and after unloading the van of all their food, supplies and equipment, they will attend a brief orientation presented by staff of the Talkeetna office of the National Park Service.  After completing that process, they will return to their pile of duffel bags and back packs to finish preparations for their flight to the Alaska Range, courtesy of our friends at Talkeetna Air Taxi.

The flight takes about 45 minutes after which they will land on skis at the site of their Base Camp, the Southeast Fork of the Kahiltna Glacier.  The climb from Base Camp will take the team a minimum of 14 days round trip, and could easily take an additional week.

We will do our best to post regular updates, but given the challenges of communicating from mountainous regions, we might not have updates every day of their climb.  We ask that you please follow along, but with a degree of patience, and hold fast to the adage, “No News is Good News!”  We will invite each climber to call in audio posts from the expedition, and hopefully, we will have a updates in a variety of languages!

We encourage you to follow the team’s progress via their Spot GPS tracking device HERE.  Hint– click on the satellite view for a better sense of where they are at!

 

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