Meet the June 12 West Buttress Team

A group of climbers from around the world have gathered in Anchorage to forge themselves into a team that will attempt to climb the highest peak in North America.  Denali, at 20,310 feet (6190 m), is arguably the hardest of the famed Seven Summits, due in part to it’s location just south of the Arctic Circle, and also due to the famously huge loads that climbers need carry on any attempt of the mountain.

Today, the following climbers are meeting a guide team from Mountain Trip to finalize their preparations for an attempt on the classic West Buttress route.  This route climbs a full 13,000 feet (3962 m) from Base Camp in the remote Southeast Fork of the Kahiltna Glacier, to the south summit of Denali.  The guides will check their gear and clothing, then assist the climbers with packing almost 20 pounds of snacks for the ascent. Once the team meeting and equipment check are complete, the team will grab lunch and finish picking up last minute supplies. A trip to the equipment store is mandatory—-what climber doesn’t like to browse the latest, greatest in climbing equipment?

Let’s meet the team!

Alexander Pancoe from Illinois

Tim Wright from Perth, Australia

Justin Kile from Colorado

Neil Reisinger from Wisconsin

Chris Douglas from Whangarei, New Zealand

Steve Moffat from Wanaka, New Zealand


The Mountain Trip guides for this expedition are Brian Muller, Ty Guarino, and Lee Lyon.

Today will be busy in Anchorage, where they will spend the night at the Lakefront Hotel.  Tomorrow morning, we’ll pick up the climbers and drive a couple hours north to the end of the road, the small town of Talkeetna, Alaska.  There, the team will check in with the National Park Service Rangers at the South District Ranger Station before loading their equipment and supplies onto ski-equipped planes for the 40 minute flight into the Alaska Range.

We will post updates as team members call in from the field.  Please understand that making a satellite phone call from deep in the rugged Alaska Range is not always easy or even possible, so there could well be gaps between updates.  We encourage everyone to hold firmly to the age old, “No News Is Good News!”  Lastly, we encourage you to append your comments to the team’s updates.  While the climbers won’t see your comments until they are off the mountain, we have heard over and over again how much it means to them to read of your thoughts and good wishes.


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  1. Hi Chris your doing a fantastic life experience all the best from waipu lots of love Shiree and Cameron xx

  2. Chris i am so very proud of you. Have an amazing time, i will be following your progress and cant wait to hear all about it in person on 5 July. Love Karyn xxx

  3. Wishing you all the best of luck and a safe trip! Love to you husband from our baby boy and two puppies in Perth, Australia. So proud of you Tim xxxx Sarah Wright

  4. Best wishes to Neil & the rest of the Team from Wisconsin. Have a safe and enjoyable climb! We’re all rooting for you back in Wisconsin!! Love ya, see you soon.

  5. To the entire team it was great to meet everyone during my time in Alaska! You guys are all going to do AWESOME! Have lots of fun and enjoy Alex’s puns! Ps I challenge you all to try and beat him in Mario Kart.
    -Alex I love you to the moon and back and am SO proud. From Everest to Denali! You’re so close to completing the Explorer’s Grand Slam! 🙂

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