2006-2007 Mount Vinson Cybercast

12/21/06

Hi this is Claude for Alpine Ascents – this is my last cybercast as we reach Union Glacier. Back from the S. Pole – we got up at 5:00 and by 8:00 we could distinguish the buildings – by 3 we could see the building. We got a tour of the station – which was really amazing and houses the most powerful telescope on earth. Doing atmospheric research meteorology, other program work ( trans) so much research going on – I would like to thank Ronnie and Ken and Duncan and thank you all for listening to our cybercast…

12/20/06

Hi this is Claude – Last Degree – I am currently standing on the south Pole – We arrived this afternoon at 3:00 and I would like to congratulate my team members Ken, Ronnie and Duncan for the super work and ( trans) they have show over the last ten days. The weather here is beautiful – 40 with little wind and the south pole experience is quite unique – we can there are so many research centers here – we will have twin otter land here in 45 minutes and tomorrow will be last cybercast – thank you good night.

12/19/06

Claude for Alpine Ascents – we did our longest day so far with 12 nautical miles. We are now at 89degrees 29 minutes. For seven days we have seen nothing but snow and the horizon 360 degrees all around us. Today at 4:oopm we saw a tiny black speck..far far away – this is the building of the south pole station. Half an hour later we could distinguish 4-5 buildings and a white one. We skied another full hour but it seems we never got any closer. In the morning the sun is on our left side and the right side is very cold. At the end of the afternoon it is the other way around. This is not only the coldest continent but the driest. I am glad tonight may be the last time I am preparing a snack bag. Trans garbled (sounded like he was discussing breaking up his food) otherwise it would be impossible to eat them. Hard as rock or should as I say hard as (?) Today has been another very good day but very cold. Tomorrow I will rest more with medium weight underwear. Today we have visual contact with the South Pole station, tomorrow – tomorrow we will get up at 5:00am and try and arrive before midnight. Looks like I will have to do my x-mas shopping at the South Pole. I will let you know more tomorrow. Good bye

12/18/06

Hi this is Claude from last degree – we had a nice sunny day – temperature drop until negative 10 – Yesterday was also a strong day – we should at the pole two days – we have 3 clients and one guide we feel strong – transmission garbled – we made some very good time today – we skied for 10 hours today – we are warming up by sun….we should be in sight of station by tomorrow morning …..we may have a view – so things are progressing well. We look forward to reach pole in next couple of days. (Much transmission missing)

12/17/06

Hello this is Claude Boisvenue with Alpine Ascents Last Degree we only did an hour and half of skiing (…transmission break…) and then set up camp (…transmission break…).  We will continue on to towards the south pole tomorrow everything is fine and we will see you next cybercast.  Bye. 

12/15/06

Hello this is Claude with the Alpine Ascents Last Degree today we did only an hour and half of skiing (…transmission break…). The weather is fair and everything is fine so we will see you next cybercast, good bye.

12/14/06

Hi this is Claude for Alpine Ascents Last Degree Expedition, December 14th at 9:00 in the evening, Antarctica time. Today we did six hours of skiing. Slowly we are working up to, tomorrow probably eight hours of skiing followed by 10 hours the next day. Today we navigated solely with the sun, we did not use a compass or gps, it was surprising at the end of the day how close we were to our objective. We are now skiing on the South Pole plateau which is almost 3000m high or 10,000ft of snow and ice underneath our skis. So tomorrow should be another nice day with (…transmission break…).

12/13/06

Hello this is Claude speaking for Alpine Ascents Last Degree, this is a special cybercast, the second one today. We have some great news, we have left Union Glacier this morning at 11:30 and we landed at the 88th degree in 58 minutes. The weather is great, it is -33 Celsius, almost no wind, blue skies and nothing but a white horizon, the great white desert. So everyone is happy and eager to go, in fact all of us want to do this as fast as possible, we all want to be home for Christmas. Wish you all the best, talk to you tomorrow, bye.

12/13/06

Good morning this is Claude speaking from Union Glacier with the Alpine Ascents Last Degree Expedition. It is December 13th Wednesday at 10:00 oclock in the morning at Union Glacier. Last night at about 2:00 oclock in the morning the Ilushyin came in with another group of climbers and skiers so Union Glacier is quite crowded right now. We are packing our things and we should be on our way for the last degree within the next couple of hours. The goal is to start at the 89th degree and reach Edmonton Scott Station at the South Pole. This is the broadcast for today, we wish you all a good time and hopefully we will be on our way to the South Pole soon. The weather now is very nice, sunny, blue skies and a little bit of wind. Yesterday was -6 degrees at Union Glacier and -39 at the South Pole. Have a great day. Bye.

12/12/06

Hi everyone this is Claude for the Alpine Ascents Last Degree Expedition. It is Tuesday December 12th its 10:00 oclock Antarctica time. We are still at Union Glacier (… transmission break…). Yesterday we did a rope test and skied six nautical miles in three and half hours. Some of the members made adjustments to their skis and poles. The Team went down to ten members rather than twelve. (…transmission break…) our guides are Ronnie who has guided extensively in the Sole Pole including a trip from the South Pole all the way down to Union Glacier, it is his fourth season. Our assistant guide is Patty, she is the first Chilean women to climb (…transmission break…) We are hoping that the weather will clear so that we can fly out tonight. So stay tuned for more news and good bye to everyone.

12/10/06

Hi this is Claude for the Alpine Ascents Last Degree Expedition. Today is December 10th and we are at Union Glacier, waiting for the Team members to fly in, probably with in the next hour. We will then set up camp, test our stoves and equipment and we should be leaving the following day in the morning. Please stay tuned for more news and I will be broadcasting regularly for this cybercast. Thank you very much. Bye.

12/10/06

Hi friends its Eric Murphy calling for As Soon As We Get There on Vinson. It is Sunday December 10th, here at Union Glacier and we are happy to announce that the Ilushyin is on its way, it should be on the ground here with in the hour. Team I for Vinson will be on it, flying back to mainland Chile to Punta Arenas for celebration and food. Not too long afterwards we will be moving on to our separate destinations in North America and beyond. Yesterday we were waiting here the entire day for the bird that never came, weather conditions, mostly wind have not allowed the Ilushyin to fly until today. All in all we have had about 11 weather delays on this trip, which is a little on the heavy side. Everyone is in good spirits here at Union Glacier, we have been having lots of good food the last couple of days, we have also been relaxing, sleeping and enjoying the good company. We will have one more cybercast from Punta Arenas, probably tomorrow, before we move on in our separate directions. I would like to announce that Claude will be moving on to his last degree program, his fellow skiers will be coming in on this Ilushyin flight and if you are following along with Claudes cybercast please stay tuned, while they ski from 89 degrees to 90 degrees south. Thanks for everyone for following along with the cybercasts and stay tuned for our last one from Punta Arenas. Cheers.

12/7/06

Hello friends this Eric Murphy calling in for Team As Soon As We Get There here on Mt. Vinson. Today is December 7th and fortunately today folks we were able to fly back from base camp to Union Glacier. Yesterday we spent the whole day at Vinson base camp, visibility was poor and the Twin Otters were not able to fly us back. Today we were able to fly back to Union Glacier where we are again in a holding pattern. Currently the wind is too high on the runway to bring in the Ilushyin so they have called it for the night and they will be watching the wind throughout the night. Hopefully tomorrow morning it will have subsided enough to allow the Ilushyin to fly in and take us back to Punta Arenas. So for now our team name is quite appropriate because we are not there yet. Everyone is doing well here at Union Glacier, we just had a great dinner of Salmon and wine and people are digging into their patience, looking forward to getting back to life on the other side were there is not ice everywhere that you can see. Claude will be continuing on to ski the last degree and we will keep you updated as to our condition here at Union Glacier. Keep your fingers crossed that the wind will subside and we will be able to fly tomorrow. Friends and family are all in the teams thoughts and stay tuned for more.

12/6/06

Hi Folks, its Eric Murphy calling for As Soon As We Get There on Mt. Vinson in Antarctica. It is about 1 oclock in the morning here on Wednesday and we have just arrived back down here at base camp. I think we are all pretty happy to be here after a long four days since we left high camp and a lot of bad weather. We had a few days of being pretty much shut down at camp one with high winds, drifting snow and generally unsafe conditions. But the team rallied and we waited it out and everyone is doing great back here at base camp. We are going to get a good night sleep after some food and with any luck we will be able to fly to Patriot tomorrow and perhaps on to Punta Arenas. Stay tuned for more, lots of love and thoughts to family and friends, from the team. Eric sends his love to Christy and mom. Cheers.

12/4/06

Hey folks its Eric Murphy calling in for As Soon As We Get There, here on Vinson in Antarctica. It is Monday December 4th at about 2:00 oclock Antarctica time and the Team is currently here at camp one, at around 9,800 feet. Our last update was on Saturday after an unsuccessful summit attempt on Friday, we had some weather come in. We were waiting at high camp for a break which we got and we were able to descend. We are still in some pretty bad weather here at camp one, but the weather has made some slight improvements and we are hoping to be able to move down to base camp today and hopefully on to Union Glacier as soon as possible. Apparently the weather is not flyable at Vinson base camp but Union Glacier is looking to be improving. We are keeping our fingers crossed, the team is doing well and we are definitely ready to move down. Everyone sends there love to friends and family following along with the cybercast. Stay tuned for more and wish us good weather. Cheers.

12/2/06

Hi Friends it is Eric Murphy calling in for As Soon As We Get There, here on Vinson. It is Saturday, December 2nd at about 3:00 oclock in the afternoon and we are currently experiencing some weather. We are here at high camp on Vinson, unable to move up or down at this point. We did make a summit attempt yesterday but unfortunately a couple members of the group were still feeling sick and we also had weather come in and those two things combined made us turn around. We are hopeful that the weather will improve; unfortunately we are also running out of time, our scheduled flight is tomorrow, December 3rd, from Union Glacier back to Punta Arenas. At this point we are in a holding position, stay tuned for more.

12/1/06

Hi Friends it is Eric Murphy calling in for Team As Soon As We Get There, here from Vinson high camp. Folks, we were able to move up to high camp yesterday, November 30th, with about a seven hour push. With about six and half to seven hours of sleep we are now getting ready for the summit push. (…transmission break…)

11/29/06

Hello cyberworld, friends and family it is Eric Murphy calling in for Team As Soon As We Get There here on Mount Vinson in Antarctica. It is Wednesday the 29th at about 3:30 in the afternoon Antarctica time and we are enjoying a rest day here at camp one with very warm temperatures, zero wind and over all very comfy conditions. A little update from yesterday, we were able to make our carry up to high camp with some food and fuel up to high camp for a summit bid. Bill was able to rest in camp one yesterday and he is feeling much better today so we are hopefully that we will be able to move as a team tomorrow on up to high camp and get into position for a summit bid. Everyone here is doing great, eating, drinking and resting today and we are ready for our push up high. We would all like to send our love to friends and family who are following along with the cybercast. (...transmission break...) sends his love to Kristina and to mom and stay tuned for more from Team As Soon As We Get There.

11/28/06

Hello Friends, its Eric Murphy calling in for Team As Soon As We Get There, here on Mount Vinson in the Ellsworth Range on Antarctica. Its Tuesday at about 3:00 Antarctica time, and we are here at camp one. For just a brief recap of yesterday, we were able to move from half camp to camp one. It was a nice leisurely day, it took us about four hours and we had warm conditions. We are happy to be here, today is sunny with blue skies and very little wind. We are getting prepared to make a carry to high camp. Unfortunately Bill is not feeling very well so he will be staying here at camp and both Mike Hamill from IMG and Wally from Great Adventures have agreed to look after him while we make our carry. We will be back here around eight hours and hopefully Bill will be feeling better tomorrow. At that point we will be looking to move up to high camp and get into position for the summit. Other than that everything is good here. We have a little bit of a time line due to all the weather delays but we are hopeful that the weather will hold and we will be able to summit soon. Stay tuned for more.

11/26/06

Hello Friends this is Eric Murphy calling for Team As Soon as We Get There, here on Mount Vinson in Antarctica. Well folks we were able to get to half camp today from base camp. We had some pretty warm weather so we are doing well. We are installed here with our posh, our camp all set up, having some hot drinks and looking forward to another nice day tomorrow where the weather will hold. Our goal tomorrow is to move on up to camp one and get installed there. It is Sunday currently at about 7:49 Antarctica time, everyone here is doing great, we send our love and thoughts to friends and family following along with this cybercast. Stay tuned for more. Ciao.

11/25/06

Hi folks its Eric Murphy with Vinson Team One, calling in Saturday, November 25th and we are very happy to report that we at Vinson base camp. We were able to fly from Union Glacier to Vinson base camp, it was a fifty minute flight on the Twin Otters last night. The weather sort of cleared up here, they were having snow throughout the day. We got to camp here and spent the day organizing and getting ready to move up the mountain. Tomorrow we are hoping to move up to half camp and the day after to camp one. The weather is good right now, and everyone is doing great. Our new team name will be, As Soon As We Get There, which kind of goes along with the theme of all the waiting we have been doing on this trip but patience pays off and it is beautiful to be here at Vinson base camp in Antarctica. Stay tuned for more. Cheers.

11/24/06

Hello Friends,

This Eric Murphy calling in for Vinson Team One, it is currently Friday November 24th at around 4:00 in the afternoon and fortunately we were able to fly to Union Glacier last night. We got to go at about 7:00 last night, we were on the plane by 9:30 and by 2:00 we were here in Antarctica. We are here at Patriot getting set to fly to Vinson and we will have some more word on that in the next couple of hours. There is some possibility in a weather delay in getting to Vinson. We are having some conditions right now which will make the landing difficult and we will find out soon. Everyone is doing great and we send our love to friends and family following along with cybercasts, stay tuned for more, we will let you know what happens. Thanks. Ciao.

11/22/06

Greetings all,

It is currently just after 10 here in Punta Arenas. We had the call to deploy this morning just after 7 AM. Unfortunately, an hour later the winds had picked up in Union Glacier, and we went into standby mode. We are waiting for the next weather sched. at 11 AM to see if we can fly. We are hopeful that we will be able to fly today.

It is a very unique landing at Union Glacier, and the pilots and ground team must be sure they can do it safely, beyond doubt. This means the cross winds must be less than 18 mph. Unfortunately, Patriot can be a windy place.

Yesterday, while waiting, we were able to visit El Andino, or the local ski hill, where there is a small ski lift that operates in the winter. In addition to some rain, and 60 mph winds, we were treated to a fantastic view of the Strait of Magellan, very beautiful. Today we may try to visit a small penguin colony north of town, as time/check in allows. Our first hope is that we will be heading to the airport within the hour. Everyone here is doing great despite the false starts. You are all in our thoughts.

Cheers

Eric

11/21/06

Hey guys, we are in a holding pattern right now....

Greetings all, it is 9 AM Tue here in Punta Arenas near the southern tip of the Americas. We had a bit of a false start yesterday, having to return from the airport due to poor weather/landing conditions in Union Glacier.

We are hopeful to fly today, and our next weather schedule is in 30 minutes. Meanwhile, we are enjoying the town, and visiting the local places of interest. We had an excellent dinner at Broccolini's last night, continuing our quest for calories to keep us warm down on the ice.

Everyone is doing well here. Please stay tuned for more, and keep your fingers crossed that we will fly today.

All my best

Eric

 

11/19/06

Hello Friends,

This is Eric Murphy reporting in from Punta Arenas, Chile, nestled along the famous Strait of Magellan, in the region known as the Tierra Del Fuego. This will be our departure point for the 2000 kilometer flight to Antarctica. It is Sunday November 19th, and our first team has assembeld here in preperation for our flight, and the first Vonson climb of the season.
We have Claude Boisvenue from Montreal, John Giorgini from Pasadena, Ca, Al Schummer from Redmond, Wa, and Bill Kind from Palo Alto, Ca.

Things are moving right along here. Everyone arrived on time, and with all of their luggage. We have just attended our pre flight briefing, and we will weigh our bags shortly. With any luck we will fly tonight or in the morning, weather permitting. Flight delays due to weather are the norm here, so keep your fingers crossed for us. The 2000 kilometer flight to Antarctica takes about
4.5 hours on the Ilushyn cargo jet, where the pilot then lands the jet on a blue ice runway over 2 miles long. This is perhaps the most technical jet landing in the world, and they pull it off perfect every time.
From the main staging area at Union Glacier, we then fly to Vinsion base camp via ski equipped twin otter aircraft. Everyone here is doing great, and we are all very excited for what is to come. We all feel very fortunate to be able to climb in one of the most remote and amazing parts of the world. The entire team sends their loves to family and friends following this cybercast. With any luck, the next one will be from Antarctica. Please stay tuned for more!

Best! Eric

 

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