May 18 Team Moves to High Camp

Lead guide Jason calls in to report the team has successfully moved to High Camp! A chilly start leaving camp, but a perfect day to ascend the fixed lines up to the ridge at 16,200′ (4937m). The team found great, calm weather up high and astounding views. This morning the team started there day ascending 1,000′ (304m) or so to the bergschrund. A bergschrund is where a glacier meets steep ice and sloughs away from it in the form of a gaping crevasse. They are easy to pick out from a long ways off. This point marks where teams start to ascend the fixed lines. The fixed lines are 600′ long ropes (yeah, BIG! They fly these in on a spool by helicopter and the park rangers put them in sometimes with help from guided teams), that are anchored to the snow with deep snow or ice anchors every several meters. They tie their ascender to their harness and attach it to the rope. An ascender is a progress capture device that allows a person to slide up a rope, but when pulled down, it’s teeth bite into the rope capturing your upward progress and protecting climbers from sliding downhill. The team followed a kicked in boot pack up this steep slope, roughly 50*, of snow and ice. At the top they can dismount the rope, and ascend another 1,000′ to High Camp.

A 2021 team at the top of the fixed lines looking down on Mount Foraker (Sultana)

Here’s Jed:


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