Mount Kenya North Face Update
We were happy to get a sat phone call from guide Mark Ryman today, as everyone has been eagerly waiting to hear of he and David’s progress. Yesterday they pushed higher and climbed seven rock pitches of the North Face Standard route, intent on making a cache and scoping out the route some more. They cached some crucial bivouac gear, a few technical items, and an amazing 12 liters of water (nice work guys!).
Mark said the climbing went well but the weather continued to take a turn for the worse throughout the day. By the time they reached their advanced base camp, full-on thunderstorms rolled in — with rain and hail hitting their position hard and depositing heavy snow on the upper part of the route. This, combined with a season that has seen zero summit success on Kenya’s technical routes, has caused David to descend with Mountain Madness staff and begin the trek out a few days early. Mark has stayed on the mountain with other staff members and will attempt to retrieve the teams cache once the snows melt off a bit. We expect to hear from him this weekend and will keep everyone posted. Great effort Mark and David! As they say in Swahili: Haba na haba, hujaza kibaba. Little by little, the pot is filled.