May 8 Team Caches and Skis!

Patrick Ruben called in a report from the team’s Camp 1 at 7,800 feet on the Kahiltna Glacier. Despite a forecast for snow, the team was able to carry loads of supplies up to about 10,200 feet under blue skies!

Today was what we call a “carry day” and the team “made a carry” of supplies. That”s climber parlance for they took about half their food, fuel and extra gear and moved it up ahead of their camp. In this case, they went about four miles and gained 2,400 feet before they deposited their supplies in a hole dug they in the snow. This is called “caching” or “making a cache.” They dug a hole and buried their food at least a meter deep so that ravens, which comb the glacier looking for food, won’t dig into their food bags and eat their cookies.

After making their cache, they skied back to camp for dinner and a good night’s sleep. This process of carrying high and then sleeping low also helps build acclimatization for higher elevations. It gave them a taste of a higher elevation without requiring they commit to it by sleeping up high.


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