Denali Climber's Log

Viewing: 1-20 of 175

noahawaii - Apr 13, 2023 12:04 pm

The Big Five

Yes, we summited mid-June! Such a good time.

Woodie Hopper

Woodie Hopper - Jul 1, 2021 5:00 pm Date Climbed: May 21, 2021

Short attempt on the West Butt

Attempted a fast climb, but the weather didn't cooperate with our schedule- how rude! Single carried to Camp 3 in 2 days with friends Sam Grant & Greg Jagielski from SLC. We were stuck at Camp 3 and tried to move to 14k our 3rd day there, but conditions deteriorated quickly a little above Motorcycle Hill.

I'll be back, but only after I rebuild my karma points at home and have a month to spare!

Great experience though, and after realizing waiting another week would be futile, we chose to descend and explore around Anchorage and Seward with the week we had left. It turned out to be a great decision!


HeyItsBen - Jun 29, 2021 1:53 pm Date Climbed: Jun 12, 2021

3rd times the charm  Sucess!

Wasn't sure if I'd be back after failed attempts in 2010 and 2012 (sick and then frostbitten partners), but I randomly met new partners last fall who invited me along and things just clicked. After periods of bad weather on our way up, we made the summit on our 16th day in brilliant conditions, and had solid weather all the way out. I summitted in a soft shell and never used my heavy gloves or mitts. Traveled at night on our way out due to heat. My 50th state high point.

Liba Kopeckova

Liba Kopeckova - Jun 24, 2021 8:15 pm Date Climbed: Jun 11, 2021

WB  Sucess!

West Buttress, solo. Went from 14,000 foot camp - it was a long day, but I felt strong and acclimatized.


jef80 - Jan 24, 2021 10:44 am Date Climbed: May 17, 2017

West Buttress  Sucess!

Tent bound for 6 days at 14 camp but managed to get to the summit in the last few days of the trip

deliazanoschi - Aug 24, 2019 3:36 pm Date Climbed: May 21, 2019

West Buttress - bad guiding company

I had a very bad experience with AMS the spring of 2019 and would strongly recommend you to not go with them if you want to summit Denali. We were a group of 7, one of us had to go back because of frostbite, the remaining 6 of us got very close to last camp before summit at 16,000 feet. That's when Con told us that he won't take all of us to summit because there weren't enough guides. He had decided from day one according to him that only 3 people from our group will summit and now because 6 of us had made it he was going to turn back 3 of us to base camp even if we were feeling great, had no issues and the weather was good. Things went downhill from there and the group lost confidence in the guides' abilities and willingness to lead us to the summit - all of us except one chose to go down and not summit with Con as our guide because we thought it was very risky. It was honestly one of the hardest decisions I had to make in my life being so close to the summit we have been training for.
Feel free to reach out to me, I am happy to share more of my experience. I am very sorry I chose AMS and I will regret this forever but I hope other climbers are aware. - Aug 15, 2019 9:54 pm Date Climbed: May 23, 2019

West Buttress - Alaska Mountaineering School

Wanted to warn everyone that Alaska Mountaineering School (AMS) was a terrible experience and I would not recommend it to anyone!! I am a management consultant and a serious mountaineer (doing 4 mountains/ year with multiple international/ local companies) and have never had a worst experience. 
We were 6 participants on an expedition to summit Denali on 23-May 2019 and 5 of us had to return one day before the summit because we did not trust our Lead Guide (Con Severis and Second Guide (Chris Welch) to take us to the top due to safety problems as well as horrible/ inhuman client service. All the trip participants are experienced mountaineers and have hired many international and local guide companies. We are all well-versed with safety, service and professionalism standards. The Denali trip did not meet these standards. Below are some high level examples of what we experienced:
>>Egregious Safety Concerns. There were numerous safety issues that put the participants at risk throughout the expedition. Just a couple of the examples include:
While guiding a roped team under strong wind conditions, the lead guide listened to loud music on his headphones, making him unable to hear his own roped team under strong wind conditions
While ordering an unnecessary and risky pass of another team, the lead guide demanded a client unhook from the fixed line and slide down a steep icy slope with only an ice axe.
>>Denial of Summit For No Reason. We were denied the summit for no reason -- when the weather was good, there were no health or capability concerns, and the guide ratio exceeded Denali’s standard guide ratio of 1:3.
>>Unacceptable Client Treatment. The treatment of the participants was unprofessional and offensive throughout the expedition. The guides frequently screamed at the participants for no reason. The guides insulted us, calling us "spoiled brats".
After this happened, the owner of AMS, Colby Coombs completely ignored our concerns, did not reply for two months to emails sent from everyone in the team and then sent the same email to each one of us saying that he trusts his guide, with no further explanation. Do not go with Alaska Mountaineering School, we missed the summit because of their unprofessionalism and also had the worst customer experience


runout - Dec 29, 2018 12:58 am Date Climbed: Jun 2, 2005

West Buttress  Sucess!

Summit from medical camp (~4500m) on day 13
Skiing down rescue gully.

Matt McCullough

Matt McCullough - Nov 19, 2018 6:44 pm Date Climbed: Jul 4, 2017

West Buttress  Sucess!

Climbed with Alpine Ascents International Jun 18 - July 8th. Summit day on July 4th was the warmest reported in years. The warm spell, however, made the final leg portion of the descent over the Kahiltna Glacier particularly treacherous.


wdimpfl - Dec 22, 2017 2:17 am Date Climbed: Jul 17, 1977

East Buttress 2nd ascent  Sucess!

Please see "Denali East Buttress Expedition" trip report for advice about the route. Flown to Sheldon Amphitheater on June 28, Spent 10 days climbing buttress (Bradford Washburn Route). Summited Denali July 17th. Back at Sheldon Amphitheater July 21st.


cturturica - Aug 8, 2017 10:44 pm Date Climbed: Jun 1, 2017

Successful summit  Sucess!

We were 24days on the mountain summited on day 21.


yuval - Jul 9, 2017 3:49 pm Date Climbed: Jun 20, 2017

Denali summit!  Sucess!

Summited after 2nd try on same expidition.
Great views, great summit partners.
Extremely cold mountain...


JuhoK - Jun 14, 2017 4:57 pm Date Climbed: Jun 4, 2017

West Buttress  Sucess!

Basin Camp - summit - Basin camp 7h 50min.


project360 - Aug 5, 2016 12:56 pm Date Climbed: Jun 11, 2016


We ascended the moderate terrain to the crest of the summit ridge before the final 300’ of exposed ridge to the top of North America. The view up was anything but easy but we pushed on in the increased winds and zero visibility. After some time saw floating benchmark on what was the summit of the highest point in North America. What a day in my life!


Guilty - Jul 29, 2016 6:07 pm Date Climbed: Jun 24, 2006

West Buttress  Sucess!

Three of us, climbed the West Buttress route, and made it. It was supposed to be our rest day at 17,000', but the ranger inform us of a big Storm approaching. We Summited as the storm was just hitting us. 'Ran-down' and Made it to 14,000' as the blunt of the storm hit.


guerinak - Jun 17, 2016 3:56 am Date Climbed: Jun 12, 2016

Tenacious Denali Orphan  Sucess!

Summited after being abandoned by my team on day 15 of my expedition. Shared the summit with John Waterman on his birthday, which made the experience more special. Would love to climb again in better conditions and perhaps a harder route than the West Buttress (summit was cloudy with no vis!) Amazing experience, demanding mountain.


fubar7500 - Jun 13, 2016 11:04 am Date Climbed: May 30, 2016

Denali West Butters  Sucess!

Summited on sunny day, mild wind only.
8 days on the way up, two down.


endo.the.timber - Jun 9, 2016 5:40 pm Date Climbed: Jun 2, 2016

normal route  Sucess!

11th day on the mountain

Grenn - Dec 31, 2015 8:00 pm Date Climbed: Jun 13, 2012

Alaska dream  Sucess!

23 days on the mountain with successful summit. Awesome.

spadflyer12 - Oct 7, 2015 2:07 pm Date Climbed: May 22, 2015

West Buttress  Sucess!

Summitted 7 days after landing on the glacier. Pushed the summit from 14 camp with ski equipment. Ditched the snowboard and skis at 18,600', just above Denali pass. Summit and back from 14 camp mostly unroped. Roped up for the Autobahn on the descent. 19hrs camp to camp.

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