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Expedition Dispatches From Around The Globe!

Posts for every team can be found under the drop-down menus at the right of this page.  We have organized our expeditions into Denali, International and Mount Everest categories, with further organization by their Team Meeting Date.  We try to post from each team on each day, but this is not always possible, due to communication challenges in mountainous regions, so keep in mind that “No News Is Good News!”

Click on the audio dispatch icons to hear phone calls from our climbers and guides, so that you can better enjoy the experience through their words, not ours.  Click on a post’s title to open it in its own window to leave a comment for your favorite climber.  Above all, have fun and dream big!

Carstensz Team is Back in Nabire

By: Mountain Trip

Scott called in a very happy post from the warmth of Nabire!  This was Scott’s 7th ascent of the peak (and his 7th rotation of the SEVEN SUMMITS!), and his excitement about our new access to the mountain comes through in his post.

Reliable access to Carstensz has been the proverbial Holy Grail for climbers hoping to ascend the Seven Summits.  Mountain Trip is thrilled to have this new helicopter access to the mountain and we are looking forward to more Carstensz Pyramid expeditions in the near future.

Great job team!

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12 | Tagged | No Comments

Training Day on Carstensz – Summit Bid TONIGHT!

By: Mountain Trip

Things are going great at the Carstensz Pyramid Base Camp in the Yellow Valley.  The team climbed about 300m up the route today as training for their summit bid.  Everyone did very well as they reviewed their systems for ascending fixed lines, using running belays and moving efficiently over moderately steep rock.

Tonight, the team will awaken around midnight, have breakfast and copious amounts of good coffee before they launch up the route for the summit.  The region has been experiencing an orographic weather pattern of clear mornings and afternoon rain, so their planned early start is designed to avoid the afternoon showers.

Here’s Scott!

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12 | Tagged | No Comments

Our Carstensz Team is at Base Camp!

By: Mountain Trip

Our lead guide Scott Woolums called in from Carstensz Base Camp!

The team flew over hundreds of miles of jungle as they made their way from the north coast of Papua to the mountain.  Under sunny, clear skies, they are now nestled in their camp, located at the foot of the mountain.  They will spend some time acclimatizing before attempting the route to the summit.  The landscape it stunning in a lunar sort of way.  The limestone peaks that dominate their views to the north and south are wildly convoluted and sculpted blue/grey rock, with little to no vegetation on their flanks.  The camp is located near tall grasses and small shrubbery, but the Yellow Valley in which they are camped is a stark place.

Carstensz Google Earth

A Google Earth image of Carstensz from the north. The Yellow Valley is the one immediately at the base of the mountain.

 

Carstensz Yellow Valley

Looking down the Yellow Valley on a previous Carstensz expedition.

Here is Scott Woolums, calling in from Base Camp on his seventh trip on the mountain!

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12 | Tagged | No Comments

Carstensz Team – Flight To Base Camp Take 2!

By: Mountain Trip

The team loaded up in their helicopter for another attempt to fly to base camp at Carstensz Pyramid!  It is early morning over on Papua and while the weather is not totally clear abd bluebird, it looks more favorable than when they tried to fly yesterday.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed that the mountain is clear and that they can land and start climbing!

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12 | Tagged | No Comments

The Carstensz Team is Weather Delayed in Paupa

By: Mountain Trip

Scott Woolums called in from the town of Nabire on the north shore of the island of Papua.  The team traveled across Indonesia to reach the island.  Today, they loaded up in a helicopter to fly over the vast expanse of jungle between Nabire and their destination – Carstensz Pyramid.  Unfortunately, they had to stop short, as the weather did not permit them to make it all the way to Base Camp.  Rather than spending the night in the very small, very rural jungle village, they flew back to Nabire, in hopes of continuing their journey when the weather improves.

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12 | Tagged | No Comments

Carstensz Team in Papua

By: Mountain Trip

The guys spent a day enjoying Bali yesterday, preparing their gear, relaxing and taking in some of the Balinese culture.   Then it was the long flight to the island of Papua where they arrived mid-day today.   They met with the helicopter pilot, and checked out the machine and hope to be flying into base camp as early as tomorrow morning weather permitting!

Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12, International | Tagged | No Comments

2014 – Carstensz Expedition!

By: Mountain Trip

Scott Woolums, our lead guide for our 2014 Carstensz Pyramid expedition called in the team’s first post.  The climbers are all in Bali and about to begin their journey to the island of West Papua.

At 16,023 feet, Puncak Jaya, as it is known locally, is the highest peak on the continent of Oceania.  Located in the southern part of the western half of the island that includes Papua New Guinea to the east.  It rises as a sharp ridge line above the world’s largest virgin rainforest, often shrouded in clouds, and despite it’s location at only 4 degrees south latitude, can often be snow covered.  The rock is hard, sharp limestone, which makes for very enjoyable climbing!

The iconic Tyrolean Traverse that spans one of the cruxes of the route up Carstensz Pyramid.

The iconic Tyrolean Traverse that spans one of the cruxes of the route up Carstensz Pyramid.

Scott will call in regularly as the team negotiates the challenges of getting to the peak, which includes many flights and a helicopter to transport the team to the base camp at the Yellow Valley.

Here’s Scott:

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Posted in 2014 Carstensz - October 12, International | Tagged | No Comments

REST DAY AT HIGH CAMP FOR THE JUNE 13 TEAM

By: Mountain Trip

Mountain Trip guide Matt Bohne reports that it was a sunny, warm day at High Camp. The June 13 Team soaked up the warm sunshine, resting and relaxing, in preparation for a summit bid tomorrow. Best of luck to the team!

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, Alaska | Tagged | 1 Comment

JANUARY 13TH TEAM IN PENITENTES

By: Mountain Trip

The team is back together again in Penitentes. Wayne and Barry elected to catch a ride in a helicopter from Plaza de Mulas to the park entrance, and Todd and crew hiked out. Either method affords beautiful views of Aconcagua and the surrounding valleys.  The plan is to gather any equipment that might have been cached in Penitentes and then head back to Mendoza tonight. Good work team!

Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 13TH ACONCAGUA TEAM SAFE AND SOUND AT PLAZA DE MULAS

By: Mountain Trip

The entire team arrived safe and sound at Plaza de Mulas tonight. Wayne, Barry and Fermin summited, and then descended approximately 6,000′ to Base Camp at Plaza de Mulas. What a thigh burner! They reunited with Todd and Mike at Base Camp and then dove into their sleeping bags for a well deserved rest. The plan is for the team to hike out to the park entrance, and then return to Mendoza tomorrow evening.

The poor satellite reception ends Todd’s call abruptly, but we are able to hear most of his dispatch:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 13TH ACONCAGUA TEAM ON THE SUMMIT!!

By: Mountain Trip

The dispatch is a bit garbled, but Barry called to report that he, Wayne and Fermin were standing on the summit! Congratulations! It sounds like it’s an absolutely ideal summit day, sunny and warm with low winds. Great work, team! They did have to work for it, though, with days of poor weather leading up to a perfect summit day. While Barry, Wayne and Fermin ascended, Todd and Mike headed down to Plaza de Mulas. All is well and we will hear more from the team, soon.

Here’s Barry:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 13TH ACONCAGUA TEAM AT HIGH CAMP!

By: Mountain Trip

It was a nice morning at Camp 2, and the team enjoyed a leisurely start to the day. Once they packed up camp, they ascended approximately 2,000′ to High Camp, at 20,000′. Sounds like the weather was really nice for their move,  and all of the team members enjoyed the surreal scenery. The team plans to have a good dinner, get some rest, then wake up early in preparation for a pre-dawn departure for the summit.

Here’s Todd:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 7TH ACONCAGUA TEAM: FINAL DISPATCH FROM JACOB

By: Mountain Trip

Hello! And thank you for following the Mountain Trip January 7th Aconcagua expedition. After spending seven nights at Camp 2 at 18,000′, Duncan and I were able to move up to High Camp on the 25th. The next morning we woke to light winds and cold temps. At 4:45 AM we left High Camp and summited less than six hours later with an amazing view of the Andies. We felt really good about our decision making, especially in light of the fact that many teams pushed their summit dates ahead of the storm in hopes of not getting stuck on the mountain, but unfortunately all of them had to go home without reaching the summit. Duncan has participated in a few expeditions and he knew that trying to go fast does not always pay off. In the end, we were rewarded for our patience.  We were able to enjoy an early morning summit, alone,  and make it all the way down to base camp the same day.
Flying out of Plaza de Mulas (Base Camp) by helicopter is always a special treat, and getting back to Mendoza to enjoy a great lunch and make Duncan’s original flight  home was a big bonus. It was great to make a new friend and climbing partner. This was an especially fun trip with someone willing to do what it takes to reach the summit!

See you in the mountains, Jacob

Here are some cool photos: Duncan, steps from the summit:

 

Duncan at Plaza de Mulas, tired and ready to hop on the heli.

 

 

 

Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 7TH TEAM BACK IN MENDOZA AND HEADED HOME

By: Mountain Trip

Jacob and Duncan boogied down the mountain and arrived back in Mendoza today, just in time for Duncan’s flight home. They had a little help from a helicopter, which flew them from Base Camp to the park entrance.  Good job, Duncan, and way to stay strong and be patient.

 

Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International | Tagged | No Comments

JANUARY 13TH TEAM HOLDING AT CAMP 2

By: Mountain Trip

It was a windy, snowy night at Camp 2.  There was approximately 12″ of new snow on the ground this morning , so the team is hunkered down, resting and relaxing, waiting for the storm to pass. Todd makes mention of fresh steak (!!) sandwiches, so they must be not be too uncomfortable!  It sounds like the weather broke up this afternoon, which is a good sign, and if things stabilize the team will move to High Camp at 20,000′ tomorrow.

Here’s Todd:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

Aconcagua Team enjoying an acclimatization day and nice weather!

By: Mountain Trip

The team is enjoying a day of rest and acclimating today at over 18,000 ft at Camp 2.  The weather has finally improved after a bunch of very windy days, and they are enjoying warmer temps and a beautiful day.  They’ll move up to high camp tomorrow and then it’s the summit push.

Here’s Todd checking in this morning from Camp 2:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua Jan 13, International | Tagged | No Comments

On The Summit!

By: Mountain Trip

Duncan and Jacob are on the top of Aconcagua!!  Their tenacity paid off today with a beautiful summit morning.  They waited out an extra 5 days of windy weather to get this chance today, so congrats for all the hard work guys.   They’ll head back down to high camp now, pack up their gear, and head all the way down to base camp this afternoon.

Listen to Jacob calling in from 22,841 ft/ 6962 meters on the top of South America:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International, Mountain Trip Blog | Tagged | No Comments

Duncan and Jacob on their way to the top

By: Mountain Trip

Jacob called in from a spot called “Independencia” on their way to the top.  They are doing great and moving right along.   We hope to hear again from the top in the next 4-5 hours!

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International | Tagged | No Comments

Heading to the Summit

By: Mountain Trip

Duncan and Jacob are finishing up their breakfast and coffee in the still dark early morning, and will be leaving for the summit under the stars in a few minutes.   It looks to be a great day and we hope to hear from them from the top later today.

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International | Tagged | No Comments

Duncan and Jacob move to High Camp!

By: Mountain Trip

After waiting out an ill timed wind storm, the guys have finally gotten a break and moved up to high camp today!  They spent 7 days at Camp 2 waiting out 50 mph + winds and trying to stay motivated and sane in their tent.   They hope to head for the summit early tomorrow morning, and the forecast looks favorable for a change.

Here’s Duncan:

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Posted in 2014 Aconcagua -- Jan 7, International | Tagged | No Comments

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