Just a quick report about some other climbers up here. By chance we’re tenting next to world class alpinists Colin Haley and Bjorn-Eivind Artun while they were waiting out the weather a few days ago so they could get on the Cassin. When they had a window, they blasted out of here, climbed up and over the West Rib, got on the Cassin and banged it out in 17 hours. That’s the second fastest ascent to date, with Mugs Stump still holding the record at 15 hours.
Colin told me they’d prepared by doing an acclimation climb up the Messner Couloir, as well as a Denali summit via the West Buttress. He said that deep trail breaking on foot is what slowed them down from breaking Mugs’ record. He also reported that their stove malfed part way up the route and they endured serious dehydration.
Pretty cool to get to know these guys a bit.
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.