Appreciate that guys! When I was writing it, I wasn’t sure if I was going to post the link anywhere. But I ultimately decided I needed to just put it out there. Process has been kind of cathartic for me.
I thought that it belonged in an issue of Appalachia from times past. Back when it had articles on expeditions to faraway places, the issues were about twice as thick as today, and...was included with your AMC membership.
Likewise, thank you for the great write-up. I can understand why it took 7 years before deciding to put it to words, and I really appreciate you being so open about it. We are all mere mortals, each with our strengths and weaknesses.
It really means a lot to me to realize that folks I respect are reading every word of this TR and then taking the time to respond. It was certainly a tough one to write.
I’m not sure it’s worthy of a “Minus 148 Degrees” comparison but to even be mentioned in the same paragraph as such a historic expedition is truly flattering. Fun fact: Dave Johnston of that legendary survival feat subsequently became the 88th person to complete all 50 US State Highpoints. I was number 270.
Thanks Mark for sharing your experiences in such vivid detail. Congratulations as well on your Denali summit and 50 high points, but boy what a harrowing tale. I can't imagine descending from Denali Pass in such a state but it sounds like you had a great team with you to help and perhaps were faring better than on Pig Hill. I'm glad to hear the incident hasn't derailed you from climbing. There's far more fine climbs on beautiful mountains to be had than we mortals can possibly hope to climb in a lifetime. Keep on keepin' on...
Once again, thanks for the incredible feedback, Jazzbo and Bombadil! Your words are very meaningful to me.
I’ve been caught a bit off-guard by the interest that some have expressed in my report. So glad that it has offered a glimpse into what a guided expedition on Denali is really like. Beyond that, I hope I have contributed something to the Man versus Nature struggle that lives within all of us.
I gotta say I have mixed feelings about the guides. Granted you weren't completely forthcoming about your symptoms, and at some point they did overrule you and get you down, but they could have done more, earlier. Short-roping a stumbling client on a traverse is some cowboy shit, and I about punched the screen reading their radio reports of "oh, everything's fine"