Brian Levendusky called in a post from the huge basin camp at 14,200′. This camp is both geographically large and tends to be the busiest camp on the mountain, with climbers taking 4-5+ days at this elevation while their bodies acclimatize. The team was fortunate to have clear, blue skies as they climbed up, a rarity this climbing season.
The ascent from their previous camp at 11,200′ started with a 1000′ climb up a moderately steep slope called Motorcycle Hill. This is glaciated terrain and there were some pretty sizable cracks to be negotiated as they climbed. Above Motorcycle Hill, the route crosses a rising traverse before climbing up a couple more steep slopes, collectively known as Squirrel Hill.
This put them at the western edge of a long, relatively flat stretch of glacier that abuts the craggy West Buttress proper. Hiking along these “Polo Fields” brought the team to the iconic and infamous “Windy Corner.” This is a steep rib of rock that drops off the Buttress, and acts as a gateway of sorts to the upper mountain. The team passed around this feature in its “Windless Corner” mode and sauntered up the remaining 800′ to camp.
Here is Brian (in either his best auctioneer impersonation?)!