Ross and Gerard call in from the “High Camp Resort” at 17,200′, debating summit bid

Climbers Ross Jobson and Gerard Crum called in a very colorful and descriptive update on the Mountain Trip May 29 Denali team, who are looking at their final chance at the summit after 17 days on the West Buttress Route.

With another potentially nasty weather system moving in at high elevations, the team is on the fence about whether or not to make their summit bid today, June 16. Unless the guides are as certain as they can be weather is both appropriate to make an attempt and will hold long enough for the descent, the team will turn back from High Camp and head to Base Camp at 7,200′, 10,000′ vertical below their current position.

Pictured below is the route that climbers follow to the summit of Denali from High Camp. From 17,200′ to the 20,310′ summit and back down normally takes teams between 10 and 12 hours, with over 6,000′ of vertical loss and gain.

Whatever their decision, summit or not, the team hopes to be out of the range and back to civilization by Wednesday, June 21.

We would like to wish the best of luck and a big congratulations to the climbers, no matter how the next several days play out. Climbing to 17,200′ and enduring all of the extreme elements on Denali for several weeks is no easy endeaor. We will keep you all at home updated on the team’s decision.

Here’s Ross and Gerard:

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  1. I’m so glad to hear your voices! Miss you both and I hope you can summit today. It would be a very good birthday gift for Gerard tomorrow.

    Thank you Eli for keeping the hope and good spirits up there. Also for keeping everybody safe.

    See you soon guys! We are here anxious waiting for you! Love!

  2. As always Ross, you make us laugh-we haven’t met but I so appreciate your good spirits. I have to say that I’ve been really stressed out about the final decision, but I am trusting the guides (One being my daughter Carly) are making the final decision. I so want all of you to summit, but I’d much rather have you all safe and back home. I can’t imagine how difficult either decision will be, but hearing of the storm leads me to hope you return. Safe travels- Claudia Cain

  3. We were so very happy to hear your voices! We know it’s been a long, hard climb. Whatever happened today, we’re all very proud of you. I can’t imagine what you’ve endured during this climb. What an adventure! Thanks to your guides for taking such great care of you.
    Happy birthday, Gerard! Love you so much!!!!!

  4. The responsibility a lead guide has is unfathomable to most of us. A guide must help his team understand that they are guests in a special place. The value and safety a lead guide brings to an adventure lies in their knowledge and experience. Most importantly is the ability to build the team’s mutual respect for the inherent dangers while sharing the rewards of effort, beauty and raw energy a place such as Mt. Denali presents. “Conquest” is a dangerous concept in Nature’s world. Keep up the good work Eli Potter.

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