Sunset on Mount Foraker with the Sultana Ridge in the foreground.
Just wanted to wish Andrew McLean and company good luck on their attempt to ski the Sultana Ridge on Mount Foraker (aka, Sultana). Andrew has just left with teammates Courtney Phillips (SLC), Kip Garre (Tahoe) and Fred Marmsater (Boulder) for a shot at the 17,004′ peak. With a 1 in 36 success ratio for teams climbing Foraker, it sounds like it will be a challenging objective.
Courtney Phillips, Andrew McLean, Kip Garre and Ferd Marmsater.
This is Andrew’s second attempt at skiing Foraker, which has only been skied once by Frenchman Pierre Beghin in 1981 and who died while climbing Annapurna in 1991. As temps warm up and the days begin to get close to 24 hours of sunlight, this is prime time for skiing in Alaska as the snow now has a chance to stick to the mountain instead of just blowing away with the wind. The team will set up basecamp at the foot of Mt. Crossen, them make two trips up to its summit where Camp 1 will be located. Another day will be spent traversing to Camp 2 at the base of the Sultana Ridge where they will hunker down and wait for optimum conditions for their summit bid…retracing their route on the way down.
Sultana Ski Team’s location on May 25 at 7am.
The team will have a SPOT satellite messenger beacon with them as a safety device and also a satellite phone. Andrew plugged me into the SPOT database so I’d get status updates and said he’d call me on the sat phone if anything happens…whatever that means. Hopefully it will only be calls of success, in which I will pass along to all those interested. Good luck fellas….and remember…it’s okay to spoon with another man to stay warm if no one is watching. Rock on!