05/19/2007, Denali, West Rib Route
Received another update a few hours ago. The climbing team is at the 17,000' camp right now. High winds are preventing them from reaching the summit. They are going to wait for the winds to calm down and hopefully provide them with an opportunity for a summit push. Everyone is doing well and are in good spirits. Not much else was said as this was a message left on my cell phone. Hopefully, they will summit in the next few days. That's about it for now. Stay tuned for updates as I receive them.
Found this photo on the internet showing the West Rib Route (by Supertopo). Hope it turns out.
My bad from the office
(Photo by Bill Hatcher of National Geograpic)
Someone once said that the key to communication is the ability to express your thoughts and opinions and for the othe other person to actively listen. Well, that's what didn't happened between Jamie and myself.
He left a message describing what was going on and I misinterperted as the group had already summitted. Turns out they haven't reached the summit yet. Still making progress up the mountain establishing camps and getting acclimatized to the alttitude.
As the route is described in the book, "Denali Climbing Guide" by R. J. Secor, the West Rib is a popular technical route, not as severe as Cassin Ridge and was first climbed over a period of twelve days in 1983.
Presently, according to Jamie, they are at the 14,000' camp and making preperations to ascend to the 17,000' camp. According to the route description, they have to overcome a bergschrund and continue up difficult rock, followed by a 500' ice coulior to a camp site at 14,800'. Mixed climbing tj\hen leads to the top of the rib at 15,300', overlooking the Great Basin and the Washburn Route.
The West Rib route turns to the right and climbs rock and snow along the crest of ths upper ridge to an exposed campsite at 16'500'
This pretty much sums up some of the difficulties that the will face in the next few days. Hope Janmie's chest cold is doing better.
That's about it for now until I hear something new from them.