Three Mountain Trip 2016 West Buttress teams (May 28, May 30, June 1) all made their summit bids on Denali yesterday, June 16, in clear, calm weather. The teams paralleled each other on their ascent from High Camp to the summit at 20,310′, leaving camp and heading up at around 8:00 am. The teams enjoyed the summit of Denali at 20,310′ in essentially perfect conditions, with little to no wind, plenty of sunshine and views all the way out into the lowlands of the park.
The list of climbers that reached the summit is as follows:
The tenacious other half of the May 28 team, climbers Angus Caithness and Mark Cadman, led by guide Josh Gardner.
The entire May 30 team, led by guide Scott Woolums, including climbers Ignacio Cueto, Carmen de Castro and Patrico Rojas.
The June 1 team, including climbers Antony Osbourn, Nicholas Gough, Honglin Guo, Allan McLeland and Neil Brimacombe, led by guide Jacob Schmitz.
Unfortunately, one climber on the June 1 team turned around at Denali Pass with a Mountain Trip guide after not feeling well physically during their ascent. While this climber felt strong throughout the rest of their trip up the mountain, they experienced difficulties during summit day, and it was decided that they could not safely continue climbing. This climber is back with the team in good condition, and will descend with them to Base Camp.
Climber Honglin Guo began experiencing severe altitude issues during summit day, at around 18,000′. Honglin continued to the summit successfully, but his condition worsened on the way back down to High Camp. He descended safely with the help of several Mountain Trip guides, while presenting obvious symptoms of high-altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE). After reaching High Camp, he received on-mountain medical treatment, and was later evacuated to Talkeetna. He is now in stable condition and receiving further medical attention in Palmer, Alaska. We wish Honglin our best, and a speedy recovery.
All three teams will begin their descent back down from High Camp at 17,200′ to Base Camp at 7,200′. Mountain Trip would like to congratulate all of the climbers and guides for their tremendous efforts. We will post audio and photo updates from the teams as they become available.