June 18th West Buttress Denali Expedition – Night Move to Camp 1

Climber Phil with the June 18th Team called in to report that the team made the “night move” from Basecamp to Camp 1. He’s got some special shout outs for the family back home as well! 

Here’s Phil: Audio Recording

climbers on kahiltna glacier

Looking down the vast Kahiltna Glacier.

Why move at night, you ask? Well, its become that time of the year when it can actually get pretty HOT in the Alaska Range. The Summer Solstice is here and the days are long (actually, never-ending up in Alaska, because the sun never sets!), which means it can get pretty hot during the middle of the day when the sun is blazing down on the reflective surfaces of the glacier.

Hot temperatures make it not only uncomfortable and sweaty for our climbers, but also the warmth softens the snow surface and make for slushy travel conditions. By traveling at night, when the air temperature and snow surfaces are cooler, the trail conditions are better and the travel becomes far easier.

Having completed the 5.5 mile trek to Camp 1, the June 18th Team is off to the races! Good luck, team! 

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