Bob Szalkiewicz checked in from 14,200′ on the West Buttress of Denali. Today the team carried loads of supplies up the steepest terrain of the trip. The Headwall is a 600′ ramp of snow and ice, along which are affixed two ropes at semi-regular intervals. The climbers clipped mechanical ascenders to the fixed lines, tethering themselves into their climbing harnesses. The lines top out on the crest of a spectacular ridge, and the team buried a cache of supplies before dropping back down the Headwall.
They’ll see how everyone is doing and then make a decision about what to do tomorrow. They might spend another day acclimatizing or they could pop back up the fixed lines and continue onward to High Camp. We’ll keep you posted!