Now I’m caught up. This stuff actually happened today.
We loaded our car back down by the bridge early this morning, before going on the glacier hike so as to save time once we were done and ready to go. Back in McCarthy, we waited to be picked up by our guide and taken up the road to Kennicott, where the hike would begin. Our guide was Kate, and she was great, and that rhymes.
Up at the St. Elias Mountain Guide office in Kennicott, we got fitted for crampons. I’d never used them before. Now I have. Not as much fun as snowshoes, but still fun. The hike up to Root Glacier is about two miles, through the mining town of Kennecott and then along the side of the valley til you reach the foot of the glacier. Root Glacier flows down from Mt. Regal, cascading to the valley floor via the Stairway Icefall, which is the second highest icefall in the world (the highest is in the Himalayas). It has never been climbed. Too high, and too dangerous.