Guide Brian Kramp called in with an update on Shan’s May 28 Denali West Buttress expedition, who are eating well and resting at 14-Camp with several other Mountain Trip teams. Due to weather, they are taking another rest day at camp, staying busy fortifying their snow walls, digging out their tents and most likely, catching up on the reading material that they brought along on the trip.
It’s more or less the same story with the majority of our West Buttress teams on Denali at the moment, and has been more or less the same story all this sesason. Relentless and frequent storms have kept many teams camped in one camp (usually at 14,200′) for a week or more, and the majority of climbers this season have not made it higher on the route than 17,200′. It takes both a tremendous amount of mental fortitude, perseverance, optimism and physical strength to reach the summit, but ultimately, the mountain and the weather make the final decision. This year, less than 30 percent of climbers have reached the summit, the most difficult season that we at Mountain Trip can recall.
They’re hoping for a clearing in the weather in the next couple of days, so that they can bury a cache up higher on the route and eventually move camp up to 17,200′, High Camp on the route.
Here’s Brian with the quick update: