Qobin and the Team Are at High Camp!

It sounds like Qobin, Pi and Zach Quine had a pretty nice day as they moved up to high camp today.  From their description, the weather was a bout as good as it ever gets up there today!

They left the comfort of the large 14,200′ (4328m) camp and climbed up about 400m of moderately steep snow slopes to gain the steepest section of the West Buttress, the Headwall.  This icy 200m section is protected by the use of fixed lines, ropes hung from top to bottom and secured every 20m or so.  This is a key transition point on the route, and gains the beautiful and very fun ridge that leads to high camp.

Many climbers feel that this ridge is the most fun part of the route, from a climbing standpoint.  The team weaved their way in and out of granite rocks, with occasional stretches of very exposed ridgeline.  At times, the sides of the ridge drop 300-500m off in either direction!  It is exciting and a lot of fun for climbers.

Upon arriving camp they needed to fortify snow walls for their tent, and spent some time building up stout walls to break the wind, as this camp is notorious for extreme conditions from time to time.  It sounds like they were more concerned about getting sunburned than buffeted by wind today.

It sounds like they are all feeling good and will consider a summit attempt tomorrow!

Here is the team:

[audio:http://mountaintripdenali2011.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/audio-post-2011-05-27-06-35-25.mp3|titles=Audio Post]
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