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Moe Al Thani | Blog
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TP Situation

TP Situation

  |   7Summits   |   1 Comment

Here is the rarest commodity on the mountain. When I pack my bags it’s the last thing on my mind, and when I remember I always say I will do it later. Until the time comes for my gear check and I realize I don’t have any, I rush to the grocery store to buy some. In my mind I don’t need more than one, so I grab one. Until I realized on the mountain that I am spending more time than I thought. I also realized that I can not survive without it but then it’s too late.

Toilet Paper, yes toilet paper is the hardest thing to find on the mountain. Fuel, food, gear no problem you will always find someone who will offer, but not toilet paper. You can’t even buy it for a $100 a roll!

So I end up rationing, not only my food but also my toilet paper and if I hear anyone leaving the mountain before saying good bye I ask “Do you have any TP to spare?” the usual answer is let me check and their let me check is our “يصير خير”

Luckily I am a good in rationing and I don’t need any yet, I know some that are out and are using snow instead. I can’t relate for sure and hope I never do. Now I know when I am leaving the mountain what is the most precious gift to give another mountaineer and will cherish his whole trip.

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The Dish Washing Situation

  |   7Summits, Denali   |   No comment

So here is something interesting for you, how do we clean out dishes. As you know by now water is very scarce. It takes 45min to melt snow for water and it uses a lot of fuel, fuel that we had to carry up the mountain. So no wasting of water here!

First we add snow to the dish and scape it using my spoon, I keep doing it again and again until it’s relatively clean. That means all the big chunks of left over food from the last meal is gone. I try me best to also take out all the bits and pieces but that is always a lost battle.

Then we take a tiny bit of toilet paper to wipe down any leftover oil or food. You only can use one tiny bit of toilet paper as you also need it for other things.

Last you serve yourself your next meal and there is always traces of the previous meal.

On the other hand, my cup has multi uses. First I have my hot drink in it most rid the time either hot coco or tea, then it’s soup time so just add the soup. Depending on what’s the main coarse I either use my cup again or my plastic container. Last is desert either pudding or brownie all in the cup. Then to make it clean again I have my after meal
Hot drink that usually have a bit of everything in it (soup, main, and desert). Voila my cup is clean!

 

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Denali Calling

  |   7Summits   |   No comment

We spent today getting ready for the summit push. We finally got the green light that we will move ahead. That is until it started snowing again and now we have to wait until tomorrow morning to know if we are heading up or not.

We did our last gear check, we have to know what we are taking up. We only carry things we must. So many of my gear will stay in camp 3 including the iridium go which is the device I use to update you all. Weight is a huge thing every gram counts so I try to go as light as possible.

The things I am taking with me are my down parka, down pants, water bottle, thermos, sleeping bag, self inflated mattress, pee bottle, gloves, and goggles rest stay at camp 3.

I will update you through the audio blog, the plan for now is that we move to camp 4 tomorrow and then either spent a rest day there or summit the day after its all weather dependent. I wish we can move up tomorrow, we broke the record of spending 11 days at camp 3 waiting for a window.

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Thumbs Up!

  |   7Summits, Denali   |   1 Comment

Finally, good weather. We had the quickest breakfast ever before we geared up and headed up the fixed lines again for an Acclimatization climb.

We went up the same route we did before to the top of the fixed lines then traversed until reaching the thumb which is just before camp 4. We made it there and back in to camp 3 in record time. We did it up and down in 7hrs reaching an altitude of 5,200m. While traversing the winds were very high, and cold -20c.

Coming back to camp, we had an amazing meal and discussed the way forward. We will take a rest day tomorrow, for last minute preparations before the summit push. We must make sure we have everything we need and packed, we don’t need surprises at camp 4.

The whole team is doing great, and especially after the weather cleared up. Many teams went up for the summit, but we decided that it would be safer to go in 2 days as the forecaster is showing better weather.

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The Silver Lining

  |   7Summits   |   No comment

The weather gusted all night reaching record winds ever recorded on Denali of 140km/hr. We were very lucky that we didn’t loose any tents that would have been the end of our trip.

We spent all day digging the snow from around our tents, we moved tons of snow and made our walls stronger.
When we first reached camp 3 there were no walls anywhere, now every team built high walls protecting their selves from the high winds.

We have been stuck in the storm for 4 days, and suddenly out of nowhere the flapping stopped and there was silence again. Looks like the storm is dying and hope good weather ahead.

Weather reports say that there might be a summit window on Wednesday, we have been here for a while now and ready to head up.

We are staying put at camp 3, until we feel the conditions are safe to move up. The team is very strong, and keeping each other strong and positive.

Once the sun shined again, we were treated by the magnificent view of the Alaskan range beneath us. We feel so lucky witnessing this beauty.

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Another Day In Paradise

  |   7Summits, Denali   |   1 Comment

Woken up at 5:30am with the gusting winds against my tent. I put on my earplugs and slept another few hours. Our wake up call was at 9:30am so I went to the kitchen tent. I realized that the winds were very high today so I know we weren’t going out. The guides faces were all gloomy, and not very happy with the weather.

We spent all day maintaining camp, as the high winds were blowing snow to our camp burying our tents. So we have to continually shovel the show from around our tents. The gusting winds didn’t stop all day, reaching 120km/hr. Park rangers and many guides never saw winds this strong in camp three. With our strong team we managed to secure our camp.

One of the other teams on the mountain had their kitchen tent blow away, our team helped them figure out what to do. They are in a tough situation where they are a team or 9 climbers and with no kitchen tent!

When we weren’t helping we were in our tents trying to dry it. As the weather wasn’t too cold today am the snow that was blowing in our tents melted soaking our sleeping bag and clothes. We did our best to dry them but as the sun isn’t out what ever we do won’t work.

There. Is some bad news from higher on the mountain, there are 10 climbers stuck at camp 4. We heard that they are suffering from frostbites and two of them got frostbitten on all their fingers and toes. They have been stuck there for two days, where they couldn’t rescue due to the weather. If it clears up tomorrow, teams will go up for them.

The weather reports are contradicting one report that we get from the same weather forcaster that does Everest forecast for the big teams that the weather will get better tomorrow on the other hand the Denali park forecast is telling us that the winds will continue until Monday.
We spent 8 days in camp 3, just waiting for a window to continue.

That being said, the four of us are in great shape, and in high spirits. We are all fine, and spend the time when not working playing cards and discussing the meals we will have once we are back home. Include us in your prayers,
That we get good weather and have a safe summit and back.

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