May 29 West Buttress Expedition – Meet the Team!

It is finally time to welcome our May 29 West Buttress team! WELCOME! We are so excited to be a part of this team’s journey up the frozen arctic slopes of The Great One (Denali). This team will join many others as they climb Denali via the classic West Buttress Route which will climb over 13,000 feet from Basecamp on the South East Fork of the Kahiltna Glacier to the sky scraping 20,310 foot (6,190 meter) summit!

Majestic Denali rises a full 18,000 feet (5,486 meters) above its surrounding landscape. Thats 5,000 feet MORE than the elevation relief of Mt Everest! Due to its location so close to the Arctic Circle, conditions can often be very winter like well into the summer months. Around the Summer Solstice, the Alaska Range experiences over 20 hours of daylight, and even in the depths of night the sun never truly sets, making headlamps unnecessary and eye masks essential. The West Buttress will lead the team through heavily glaciated terrain from Basecamp on the Kahiltna Glacier at 7,200′, to Camp One at 7,800′, Camp Two at 11,200′, Camp Three at 14,200′, High Camp at 17,200′, to–conditions permitting–the 20,310′ summit.

Here’s the crew!

  • Cristian Painemal of Wallmapu (Mapuche), Chile
  • Javier Izquiderdo joining from Virginia, USA
  • Michael Fortune coming over from Dulbin, Ireland
  • David Keating joins us from Crecora, Ireland
  • Krzysztof Szerenos of Michigan, USA
  • Carlos Hernandez hails from Mexico City, Mexico

These outstanding folks will be joined by one of our lead guides Jacob Schmitz, assisted by Kyle Horner and Stephan Innman.

Throughout the team’s expedition, please keep in mind the adage of “no news is good news!” in terms of the updates from the field. There are some days when certain circumstances, like poor satellite phone reception (this happens frequently at Camp 2 at 11,200′, as it is situated in a high-alpine basin with massive peaks on all sides), fatigue from a particularly long day, no change in their situation due to weather, etc., will prevent teams from calling in an update. Friends and family are encouraged to leave comments for their loved ones on this expedition, but keep in mind that they will not be able to see posts or comments until they return to Talkeetna after the end of their expedition, once they leave the glacier.

Denali Factoid: Ever wonder what happens to all the trash and… other stuff? Well it all has to come out with you, I mean ALL of it. Since 2001 the Park Service has been using Clean Mountain Cans to assist climbers in bringing their excrements off the mountain. An essential action to preserve these frozen slopes which tend to preserve things in their place for decades. Read about it on the NPS blog here.

Here’s to a great trip!

-The Mountain Trip Team

Share Button


    • Le deseo lo mejor a todo el equipo, mucha energía, disfruten esta gran aventura y, sobretodo, cuídense.
      Para ti Cristián, por favor recuerda siempre que la verdadera cumbre es el hogar. Acá en Chile te estará esperando tu familia. Te amo Painemal ❤️✊🏼

      I wish the best to the team, enjoy this great adventure and, above all, take care of yourselves.
      For you Cristián, please always remember that the real summit is home. Here in Chile your family will be waiting for you. I love you Painemal ❤️✊🏼

  1. Todo el Newen en esta aventura Paine!!! Vamos con todo! Desde acá pensándote y enviándote toda la energía para tu travesía. Disfruta cada paso!! Te quiero muchísimo!! ✊✊


    Las mejores energías para todo el equipo!!!!

  2. Steve Inman ..from the day I met you and gave you things to do you exceled and never thought it was hard or something you could not do…with that go get um and make memories because I know you got this..Do what you do best believe in yourself and and for the love of God come vist me and your favorite Aunt when you get back at 0 elevation….

  3. Paine! Que sea una hermosa experiencia y que disfrutes mucho! Un gran abrazote!

    Wishing you all a safe and and amazing expedition!

  4. Paine!!! Vamos con todo por esa cumbre. Desde acá pensándote y enviando mis energías para ti. Un abrazo fraterno!!! 💪✊😊

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.