May 7th Denali Team caches above Camp 1

Corey calls in from Camp 1 at 7800 feet on the Kahiltna Glacier. The team successfully carried and cached gear and food to 9800 feet to continue their push up the mountain. That dug-in pile of equipment in the glacier is then marked by GPS and tall sticks of bamboo to be retrieved the day after the team fully moves up to Camp 2 at 11000 feet. That “back-carry” day is appreciated as a partial rest day as the team will hike on down to the cache site with empty backpacks to retrieve the pile as the last step to fully move up to Camp 2. This allows the team to split up the weight in their backpacks over multiple days and continue acclimating as they move up the mountain.

The weather has brought in a foot and a half of new snow which makes moving much more physically demanding and challenging to navigate around small crevasses which have been hidden by new snowfall. A crevasse (crack in the glacier) in Alaska can range from the width of inches to a hundred feet. Our guides being able to read the terrain they are climbing in and their familiarity with the Kahiltna Glacier, allows them to navigate around these large cracks in the glacier. Similar to navigating rapids in a river…but frozen.

The Kahiltna Glacier covering nearly 200 square miles is the longest glacier in the Alaska range and offers the approach to Denali.



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