May 11 Denali West Buttress Team: Waiting out weather at 14-Camp

Mountain Trip guide Nicole Lawton called in on behalf of the May 11 Denali West Buttress Expedition, who “enjoyed” a rest day at Camp 3 at 14,200′, waiting out high winds and blowing snow.

The team has begun to really dig into the material that they brought along for entertainment, including listening to extensive recorded live music, reading books, playing games, drinking copious amounts of hot drinks, and of course, raiding their snack supply.

Maintaining high spirits and optimism during several days of downtime in a tent at high-altitude is a major aspect of successfully climbing the mountain.

They unfortunately do not anticipate moving from camp tomorrow (5/24) either, as winds and weather at High Camp are significantly worse and low visibility would make the climb too dangerous.

The cold front that has been hammering the mountain with heavy snow and gale-force winds is expected to begin to gradually move east on Thursday, May 25. We’re hoping that the system gives way to high pressure to afford the team a clear weather window to make their push for the summit. They still have at least another week of time on the mountain, and according to the Denali forecast put out by the National Weather Service, the storm is expected to taper off through Saturday. If you’d like to take a look at the weather outlook, click here.

Here’s Nicole with the update:

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