HORSE PENS 40 by W1NB3K

VIEWS: 12 PAGES: 2

									     (cont. from p. 2)
     a story her husband Mike repeated to us later. They were
     both clearly proud that their locals—climbing with a 20
     percent handicap—had defeated a climber considered by
     many to be the strongest American climber today.
               The forecast predicted several days of rain, so
     we figured that instead of hanging around Horse Pens, we
     would climb the next morning instead of taking a rest-day
     and leave when the weather turned. It was cold, grey, and
     windy. Highlights included Ashley’s send her first V3, a
     problem called Panty Shields, and a nearby V2 called
     Growing Stone, full of crazy underclings and heelhooks.
     The committing V2/V3Grooverider was also especially
     fun.
                                                                       Ashley Shuyler ’07-‘08 topping out during a spring
               Late in the morning the rain began to spit, so we
                                                                       break trip to Hueco Tanks.         -Josh Neff
     piled back in the car and headed for Ashley’s
     grandmother’s house in Buena Vista (pronounced byu-
     nah vista), Georgia. During the drive and through the             Trip Report: Mt Orizaba, January
     night we experienced an ice storm, which by morning had
     made the roads impassable and killed the power in                 2005
     Ashley’s grandmother’s house. This wasn’t exactly what                                                Adilet Imambekov
     we had in mind when we decided to head down South,
     but we focused on experiencing with this culture so                          Three members of the HMC—Adilet
     different from New England. Plus, the ice storm had               Imambekov, George Brewster, Itay Yavin—and Boston
     given everything a crystalline coating, which was really          University student Alexey Dynkin organized an
     beautiful.                                                        expedition to Mexico in January 4- January 17, 2005 to
               We didn’t get much climbing in for the rest of          ascend Mt. Orizaba, the third highest mountain in North
     the trip. We did have some great experiences, though,             America at 18,490 feet (5,636 meters). Although the
     including a visit to Atlanta in which we explored a               standard route to the summit does not usually present
     Rastafarian temple and stopped by the Martin Luther king          any technical difficulties, the significant altitude and
     memorial. On Saturday evening we tried to drive in to             changing weather present serious hazards and
     Rocktown, Georgia to get in some more climbing;                   sometimes claim the lives of climbers. Three days out of
     unfortunately, the approach road was impassable in                Mexico City we arrived in Hidalgo at 11,000’. We
     Mark’s Accord. Unexcited about camping out on the                 established a camp in the forest at 12,000', and made an
     broken-bottle wasteland of the Rocktown access road, we           acclimatization carry up to Piedra Grande hut at 14,200'.
     decided to call it a trip. We hit the road for another            During an acclimatization hike to 15,500’, most of the
     twenty hour push through the night and next day, leaving          members of the team felt the effects of the altitude:
     the South and its sandstone boulders behind.                      headache, weakness, and inability to perform well. After
                                                                       two nights spent at Piedra Grande, we moved to a high
                                                                       camp. Next day the summit bid started at 2:30am, and
                                                                       the crater of the volcano was reached via Jamapa glacier
                                                                       route at ~7:30am.
                                                                                  Up to 16,500’ the summit was not visible and
                                                                       we had to navigate through a series of moderate ice/rock
                                                                       gullies. As we reached the crater rim, the condition of
                                                                       some members of the expedition worsened. Due to
                                                                       strong wind, the absence of adequate protection on the
                                                                       traverse to the true summit, and the time the traverse
                                                                       would require, we decided to descend without traversing
                                                                       to the true summit. The upper section of the glacier had
                                                                       a very thin layer of ice covering the rocks, and all but
                                                                       the last member of expedition rappelled through that
                                                                       section due to the inability to self-arrest in the case of a
                                                                       fall. In total the descent to high camp took 2 hours, and
                                                                       the same day we reached Tlachichuca from Piedra
Jeremy Hutton takes a break from working on the roof of the            Grande via jeep.
cabin during the fall Work Weekend to take in the view. After
many years as the Cabin Liaison, Jeremy will head down to
Princeton next year.               - Joseph Abel

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                                             (cont. from p. 1)
Trip Report: Borkoldoy                       Photos attest to the incredible weather, and us lying bastards
Range, Tien Shan 2005                        (good recruiters?) told anxious newcomers, “oh, it’ll probably be
                                             about the same in late January.”
                             Lucas Laursen       Come exam period the clubroom saw many of sorting gear and
        This August, eight HMC               calculating fuel consumption in an effort to avoid studying for
members flew to Kazakhstan to celebrate      classes. The last exam done, we set out, ten members strong, for
the HMC’s 80th anniversary by                the Valley Way parking lot near Randolph, NH. The walk up to
                                             the Valley Way tent platforms was characterized by still, cold
attempting first ascents in neighboring      air—and a long line of silent backpackers. Everyone was absorbed
Kyrgyzstan’s Borkoldoy Range. The            in his or her own battle with the cold. Cooking in the superchilled
Borkoldoy Range were suggested to us         air was a feat, even with the luxury of the flat, wooden platforms
by a friend of expedition member Bjarne      at Valley Way campsite, and one older model stove gave out
Holmes’ because only three or four           under the stress. Strike one for the valiant leader [the author –ed.].
                                             Checking on his flock’s wellbeing afterwards, he duly recorded
British and Russian expeditions had been     one set of cold feet and one tired mountaineer. The cold feet were
there, due to long-lasting political         inserted in down booties and the tired hiker advised to hurry to
tensions in the region.                      bed for a good night’s rest.
        In true HMC climbing camp                The evidence shows that sometime during the night, the man
style, we succeeded in bringing home         with the cold feet’s inner boots were left outside the tent and
                                             solidified to near-diamond hardness. Cheerfully emerging from
nine first ascents from our base camp in     his tent in the morning, the valiant leader didn’t notice. Boiling
the Ayutor River Valley. Prominent           water and other sundry preparation complete, the group took
cirques surrounding our advanced base        advantage of blue skies and still air to proceed to the Madison
camp were named after the HMC’s              Hut. The man with the now frozen inner boots, opted to preserve
founding father, Henry S. Hall Jr., and      the natural shape of his feet by returning to the car with his buddy.
                                             This may have been the greatest act of wisdom shown on the trip.
two of its famous sons, Bradford             Strike two for the valiant leader.
Washburn ’33 and David Roberts ‘65.              The beautiful weather (-5F, light breeze, views across New
        Full reports will be available on    Hampshire) held out, making the December training trip seem like
harvardmountaineering.org, in the AAJ        less of a sham. Minor issues with fogged and frozen ski goggles
2006, and in the next edition of Harvard     slowed the group down, but on the whole, the HMC proceeded at
                                             about guidebook pace. The group made camp at Sphinx Col just at
Mountaineering. As per tradition, the        sundown and wished for ice screws to anchor the tents to the
results will be presented at this fall’s     icesheets that occupied all the flat surfaces. Further stove trouble
banquet and slideshow (pg. 1), where         occurred when a stove kept blowing out in the wind.
alumni, as always, are welcome.                  Taking the morning tally of injuries and malfunctions, the
                                             valiant leader noted another set of cold feet, a set of reshaped feet
                                             due to frozen inner boots, and two out-of-commission stoves,
                                                           leaving two functional stoves and twelve functional
                                                           feet for eight mountaineers. What little water could
                                                           be boiled was used to help warm the cold feet as the
                                                           group stood on edge. At a slow pace, with cold feet
                                                           and broken stoves, could they spend another night out
                                                           in the Presidentials?
                                                               An experienced member decided they couldn’t.
                                                           Strike three for the valiant leader. Crushed, he agreed
                                                           to a compromise. Those of the frozen inner boots and
                                                           cold feet would be escorted down to the cabin via the
                                                           Lion’s Head trail while the remaining eight functional
                                                           feet would tramp down the remainder of the
                                                           Presidentials in order to reach the waiting cars at
                                                           Crawford Notch that night. So ended the 80th
                                                           Anniversary HMC Winter Presidential Traverse. Not
                                                           with a proud march but a lowly glissade.
Wildcat from Washington – John Noss


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