Camp Schurman

1430 Sunday. We reached our base camp a couple of hours ago and have been busy making a wind break, sitting area and stove enclosure out of snow. Camping on rock is an option here, too, but Bob loves making a very temporary home out of snow, it seems. Bill and Michael went the same way, and Micah and John are up on the rocky area.

The climb this morning started on the old, large lateral moraine that shows the former extent of Inter Glacier. That brought us to the current reaches of Inter Glacier, where we roped up (mostly for practice and getting to know that type of travel together) and put on boots and crampons. The crampons were overkill most of the way but didn’t hamper us. The surface most of the way was a few inches of icy, wet, somewhat loose snow on top of a harder layer.

We climbed to the ridge near Camp Curtis, then unroped for the short rock/snow descent to the Emmons Glacier, which greeted us with a beautiful, huge, twisted crevasse. I’ll add pics later, because I do not want to waste battery life on those uploads. We roped back up for the short climb on the glacier proper (finally) to Camp Schurman.

Progress was frustratingly slow. I have more doubts now about our ability to summit tomorrow. We are planning to leave earlier, waking up at 2230 tonight and leaving as soon as we can. We will have the ropes and as much gear as possible set up before we try to sleep (which should be soon). That might give us enough of a shot. But while I came up with little effort beyond fighting off boredom, others were struggling. We have 5000′ to go on somewhat steeper slopes than today’s. I don’t see everyone making it, which means none of us will. Frustrating, because I’m feeling strong, and the wx, while far from suitable for perfect conditions, appears to be cooperating well enough.

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