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North America, United States, Alaska, Bona, Winter Ascent

Bona, Winter Ascent. Alaskans Dave Pahlke, Rich Burton, Paul Denke- walter and I made the first winter ascent of Mount Bona (5005 meters, 16,421 feet) on March 3. We followed the northwest ridge, the route of the first-ascent party. The climb began on February 23 when Loon Air Service flew us to the Russell Glacier. We put in two camps, the higher at 12,800 feet, just above a broad saddle. The view from the two-room igloo included Blackburn and the Twaharpies. The temperature on the summit was -25° F. We could see 14 peaks higher than 14,000 feet, including St. Elias, Logan, Lucania, Steele, Blackburn and Sanford. After a two-day descent, we hid from a week’s worth of gusty storms in our Base Camp Igloo before we were extricated by air.

Earl Redman