Adventurer Jason Black has been left ‘gutted’ as his bid to summit Mt McKinley ended yesterday due to adverse weather conditions set to hit camp.
Jason sent the following message to his family.
“Update guys, sitting in the Genet Basin at 14.386ft moved up from 11.000ft. nailed it in 5hrs with effects from altitude I felt strong.
Boiled melted snow, I’m making freeze dry potato – hot tea and I’m sticking up my tent after hauling 60/70kilos up.
Tired is an understatement, last night proved to be the coldest night ever put in a tent.
It was pretty grim – I woke at 4pm the interior of the tent was caked in ice. Frozen hair and damp conditions.
Sleep was zero as lack of O2 made it too difficult.
Jason then updated his blog, during which he announced his brave attempt to summit the perilous mountain was over.
“I’m gutted to announce that my summit bid is over, mother nature has struck again, a terrible snow storm with 50/60 mph winds above 14.000ft is forthcoming, with incredible freezing temperatures of -30.
“My plan was to summit from 14.000ft doing a 6.000ft over night ascent attack 12.000ft round trip in 24hr i’d projected.
However, yesterday I received the dreaded gut wrenching forecast of a second bad snow storm with winds of 50/60 mph Sunday through Friday, and with my flight home booked for Saturday, conscious it takes days to get out of the Alaskan Range, I knew it was over.
Hearing the news sitting in my tent my heart sank – my mind now in overdrive, I’m having difficultly breathing, but I’ve experienced this many times before.
Today, the 7th planned acclimation rest day, so spent refueling the body and enjoying the incredible views into the Alaskan Range far below.
Tonight I await, but slowly the reality hits home – ‘it was mission impossible’, it wasn’t going to happen.
I’m totally gutted after everything we’ve been through.
Obstacle after obstacle on the original West Rib route getting snowed in Death Valley.
Record low temps and avalanches etc. – changing our route to keep the summit dream alive.
But this blow to the expedition was unbeatable, I couldn’t sleep all night knowing the morning signaled to turn away from the prize and that i could see just up ahead and nearly touch.
Damn you mother i kept saying in my head – Damn you!
Tossing turning thinking could i have did it any differently.
Honestly – no, it was what it was, gutted is an understatement, early this morning I took my last look at this wonderful mountain standing majestic at 20.000ft and said goodbye vowing to dance once more.
Damn you mother nature why why why? 80kilos on my back i descended 7000ft for 16mile – the tough gradient and deep snow.
I battled 11hrs making it just in time to base camp as the snow storm blew up.
That moment now a bitter pill to swallow knowing physically and mentally I could have nailed it never thinking mother nature in her full extent the deadly assassin.
The weather that I receive at 8pm daily now is that it’s snowing and tranquil.
Love to all , J x x