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Talkeetna

May 30, 2010 1 comment

RO
Am ajuns in Talkeetna. Am petrecut ziua de ieri in Anchorage. Seara mi- a ajuns si bagajul de la Paris iar noaptea a ajuns si Tom – cu un bagaj in minus. Se pare ca rucksacii gri nu sunt bineveniti in Alaska. Bine ca a ajuns azi dimineata.

Am fost la “orientation meeting” la rangers station si am inchiriat cea mai scumpa pereche de rachete de zapada din lume: 65$

Maine zburam pe ghetar. Pana atunci o bere si o pizza in Talkeetna 🙂

EN
I arrived in Talkeetna. I’ve spent yesterday in Anchorage. Inthe evening my bag arrived from Paris and at night arrived Tom – minus a bag. It seems that grey backpacks aren’t welcome in Alaska. Luckily it arrived this morning.

We’ve been at the orientation meeting at the rangers station and I’ve rented the most expensive pair of snow shoes in the world: 65$

Tomorrow we’re flying onto the glacier. Until then a pizza and a beer in Talkeetna 🙂

Seattle :1 din 2 / Seattle: 1 out of 2

May 28, 2010 2 comments

RO
Am ajuns in Seattle si incerc sa profit de tehnologia gratuita, cat mai pot… Urmatorul zbor, spre Anchorage este in 6 ore. Pana atunci am timp sa fac o ‘puja’ ca cel de-al doilea bagaj sa imi ajunga maine in Anchorage. Da… Se pare ca un rucksac a decis sa viziteze Parisul azi si sa soseasca dupa mine. Nu e mare lucru – am in el doar toate hainele si jumatate din mancare. In rest totul este in grafic. Seattle nu se dezminte si e innorat. Ma uit pe fereastra poate, poate o vad pe Meredith Grey sau pe Mc Dreamy… Interesant ce asocieri ajung sa fac in aceasta era a ‘pop-culture’… :))

EN
Arrived in Seattle and I’m trying to take advantage of the free technology while I still can… Next flight, to Anchorage, is in 6 hours. Until then I think I’ll have a ‘puja’ so my second bag reaches me, tomorrow, in Anchorage. Yeap… It seems a backpack of mine decided to visit Paris and, hopefully, join me tomorrow… It’s not a biggie – I only have in it all my clothes andhalf my food 🙂 All the rest goes according to the plan. Seattle seems true to it’s fame – it’s cloudy and about to rain. Looking out of the window I’m expecting to see Meredith Grey or Mc Dreamy… Funny what connections my brain makes in this era of pop culture… :))

Otopeni / Bucharest airport

May 27, 2010 3 comments

RO

Ora 0 – ma rog, e ora 3:47am de fapt insa e ora “0” a excursiei 🙂

Peste 20 de minute pornesc spre aeroportul Otopeni (Henri Coanda) de unde urmeaza zborul spre Paris, apoi Seattle (WA) si in final Anchorage (AK). De data asta nu mai merg ‘light’ – am 2 genti, una sigur de 23+kg si una sigur de 20+ kg. Se pare ca voi merge incaltat cu bocancii Spantik in picioare….

In aeroport urmeaza sa ma intalnesc cu Ioana Molnar si Claudia Damoc, Teo Vlad si Marius Gane si Sasha Halibei. Se pare ca va fi o ‘invazie’ romaneasca in Denali acest sezon. Vom merge impreuna din Bucuresti pana in base-camp si de acolo fiecare echipa isi va urmari proiectul ei. Tom va ajunge cu o zi dupa mine in Anchorage.

EN

Running out of time so this is the English short version: on my way to airport in 20 minutes. Flight from Bucharest to Paris, then Seattle and then Anchorage where I will meet Tom. I’m flying out with a bunch of Romanians planning an invasion of Denali 🙂 🙂 – will all share the same base camp then will be off on our own team’s projects.

De ce? / Why?

May 23, 2010 3 comments

Ocupandu-ma de ultimele detalii ale expeditiei, recent, am avut mai multe intalniri cu persoane care au avut contact doar sporadic cu alpinismul sau cu alpinisti. In mod constant, si fara indoiala de inteles, intrebarea “de ce faci asta” mi-a fost pusa de fiecare data si de fiecare data am oscilat intre a zambi enigmatic sau a da un raspuns complex si ambiguu.

Cu ceva timp in urma aceeasi intrebare mi-a fost pusa si de Niels de la Valandre. Mi-a luat cateva zile sa ii raspund si intr-un final i-am trimis un mail. In esenta, raspunsul meu era: ‘nu am un raspuns insa iti pot spune o poveste reala’. Ceva mai tarziu am decis sa pun acel email si pe blog:

http://www.cosmin-andron.com/2010/05/why-are-you-climbing-dude/

iar azi, un prieten mi-a trimis si o versiune vizuala a unei tentative de a aborda intrebarea:

http://vimeo.com/10075506

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Taking care of the last details before departure, willy-nilly, i came in contact with people with little or no previous contact with alpinism or alpinists. Without fail, constantly, the question of ‘why are you doing this’ cam up in all and every conversation. The answers varied between enigmatic smiles and convoluted ramblings.

However, not long ago, i was asked the same question by Niels of Valandre. I’ve taken a few days before replying and in the end I sent him an email, saying, basically, that I don’t  have a proper answer but that i can offer him a true story… Some time afterwards I decided to publish that email on my blog:

http://www.cosmin-andron.com/2010/05/why-are-you-climbing-dude/

and today, a friend, sent me a visual attempt to tackle the same question:

http://vimeo.com/10075506

Tom Chew

May 20, 2010 1 comment

Partenerul meu pentru traseul Cassin este Tom Chew, un american stabilit in Hong Kong. Pe Tom l-am cunoscut in Sichuan (E-Tibet) in ianuarie 2006 cand Tom experimenta cu escalada in gheata. Am pastrat legatura si am catarat impreuna in anii urmatori in Hong Kong.

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My parter for the Cassin Ridge is Tom Chew – an American living in HK. I have met Tom in Sichuan (E-Tibet) in JAnuary 2006 while he was getting the hang of ice climbing. We kept in touch and climbed together, the folowing years, in Hong Kong.

TOM CHEW

Tom

I am a 51 year old mechanical engineer working as Director of Operations for Measurement Specialties in Shenzhen, lifelong athlete (USA National Cycling Team 3 yrs in the 80’s, marathon and ultra-marathon running including (4) marathons (2:55 @ Boston) and (3) 100Km Charity Trailwalker runs) who has been climbing avidly for 8 years out of our Hong Kong location.  Mostly rock climbing, but with more and more interest in the high mountains.  Here is a summary of my climbing experience:

  • Climbing and lead climbing alpine water ice on three separate trips in Sichuan Province Si Gu Niang Shan region of China
  • Three separate 5,000m winter accents of peaks one, two, and three, of Si Gu Niang Shan, each progressively more technical (from hard hiking of snow fields to some roped alpine rock)
  • Walter Peak 2,900m in Mt. Cook region during NZ Alpine Guides climbing school.
  • About 50 first accents of new rock routes both trad and sport in Hong Kong up to Yosemite grade 5.11, pioneered 3 new crags here.
  • Rock Climbing all over Southeast Asia, and parts of USA, plus where ever else the chance came up.
  • Eagle Peak multi-pitch rock trad lead at altitude in Lake Tahoe Desolation Wilderness Area via 5.7 route, lead and minor rescue of injured climber on decent
  • Yosemite 7-pitch trad lead of “Via Aqua” 5.7 accent of Yosemite Falls
  • Mt. Kinabalu, 4000m+ hike and scramble
  • Lauberhorn, winter accent from Grindewald, Switzerland
  • Mt. Biking in Tibet over high passes 5,000m+(only one to make it on the trip)
  • Turned back by bad weather on the Ball Pass route (solo) on my last visit to Mt. Cook.

Multumiri / Thanks

May 20, 2010 Comments off

Numaratoarea inversa a inceput…. In 27 mai, dimineata pornesc spre Anchorage via Paris si Seattle. As vrea sa multumesc aici pentru ajutorul primit in ultimele zile cu pregatirile si cu echipamentul lipsa:

– David Neacsu si Tulit Zsombor pentru telefonul Iridium

– Cristi Niculescu pentru finantarea comunicarii

– Emil Camerzan pentru MHW Compressor

– Mihai Radulescu pentru credit

– Justin Ionescu, in principal pentru antagonisme dar si pentru ajutor atunci cand a fost nevoie de el

Pregatiri / Preparations

May 5, 2010 Comments off

O multime de lucruri de rezolvat intr-un timp foarte scurt. Mancare, ultimele piese de echipament, bilete si mai ales tehnologia de comunicare… Inca trei saptamani si sunt sigur ca timpul va trece foarte repede.

PS. plus o incalzire pe “Ginat” (ED,V, M4+, 85°, 1000m) in ‘Droites’ si “Chere” (D,II, 80°, 350m) pe ‘Triangle du Tacul’.

Loads of stuff to do in a very short span of time. Food, last bits of gear, tickets and especially comms. Three more weeks and i bet the time will fly.

PS. plus a warm-up on “Ginat” (ED,V, M4+, 85°, 1000m) on the ‘Droites’ and “Chere” (D,II, 80°, 350m) on ‘Triangle du Tacul’.