Day 3 Dispatch

Shira Plateau/Huts to Barranco Huts via Lava Tower Let’s start off today right with Sean’s Audio Message direct from Barranco Huts (Camp 3), and even though he got disconnected we’re sure he was going to end with “but otherwise…everyone is doing well, enjoying themselves, and ready for a good night’s sleep”!  Barranco Huts (Camp 3) is in the Karanga Valley surrounded on three sides by steep tall cliffs/walls, so there’s usually only a small window several times an hour throughout the day reception is good enough for a brief communication transmission.   Today’s BLOG is a bit late due to us working on a more effective and efficient way to deliver all your well wishes.  We’re happy to report this new way should work better, and all messages will be resent to ensure all are delivered to everyone over there.  All messages previously received and those that come in by early this evening (Mountain Time) will be resent tonight, and read to everyone at Barafu Camp (Camp 4 / High Camp) before the summit push.  Those arriving later tonight and after will be sent to Sean and read at Mweka Huts (Camp 5) and when everyone gets back to Moshi.  During the time we had two-way communication with Sean, he said the day was sunny and warm but after they ate dinner it started to rain.  He told us everyone is doing “AMAZING”, and he couldn’t be more pleased with how everything is going (minus the minor communication glitches from time to time). To recap today’s journey, from the Shira Plateau/Huts (Camp 2) all continued their journey passing the junction towards the peak of Kibo (the local name for Uruhu Peak [aka, The SUMMIT!]).  As they continued, they changed their direction more southeast towards the Lava Tower.  Shortly after the tower, they came to the second junction which brought them up to the Arrow Glacier at an altitude of 4,876 meters (~16,000).  They stayed there for a couple hours having an extended lunch and acclimatizing to the higher altitude.  They then continued down to the Barranco Huts (Camp 3) to an altitude of 3,860 meters (12,664 ft). Here they rested before dinner, ate another hearty hot meal, and went right to sleep. Although they ended the day at the same elevation as they started, this day is very important for acclimatization and helped their bodies prepare for summit day.  It was a long hiking day today, with the entire trek lasting around 6 hours. Today was a harder hike than the past two (higher in altitude, and longer in time), and this is a good warm-up for tomorrow when they hike to Barafu Camp (Camp 4 / High Camp) and finally the push to the Summit.  The first several hours of the hike to Barafu Camp (Camp 4 / High Camp) is a steep hike up out of the Karanga Valley; however, once they are out of the valley it is a long but gradual ascent up to Barafu Camp […]…read more

Day 2 (Machame Huts – Shira Huts) Dispatch

Everyone made it to Shira Huts ( Camp 2), and all are doing well! After waking up at Machame Huts (Camp 1) and eating a hearty breakfast, they hiked up out of the rain forest and continued upward, crossing a small valley and hiking along a rocky ridge.  They are now heading more westward, and reached a river gorge at 3,658 meters (~12,000 ft) which will be where they set up camp for the night.  Today’s hike lasted just over 4 hours. The reception at Shira Huts (Camp 2) was not as clear as anticipated, but Sean was able to leave the following audio message.   For those of you who emailed a message to [email protected] for Sean and the Team, they are being delivered to Sean and the rest of the Team.  Things are a bit busy here at the moment, but you should receive a reply to your message letting you know it was received.  Keep emailing messages to [email protected] as continued support and encouragement, and we’ll post any replies Sean or any Team Member has once a decent two-way communication has been reestablished. You can keep donating and supporting CancerClimber and the rest of the 2014 Kili Team by going to https://www.crowdrise.com/KilimanjaroExpedition2014.  Karen and Michael Linsky donated yesterday supporting PJ Rudolph, and we could not be more appreciative! As everyone was hiking out of the rain forest the first picture below was the view behind them (Machame Huts / Camp 1 is down under that canopy somewhere), and the second picture shows the Porters ahead of them carrying equipment and supplies to Shira Huts / Camp 2 (which is still a few more miles past the peak). As a head’s up, tomorrow everyone will be leaving Shira Huts, topping out at Lava Tower for an extended lunch and staying at altitude (16,000 feet) for a few hours, and then descending down to Barranco Huts / Camp 3 (12,500 feet).  They’ll be spending the night in the Karanga Valley, and communication there is very limited. Be sure to check back here tomorrow for Day 3’s Update!…read more

Day 1 Dispatch

Sean and The 2014 Kili Team drove from Moshi to The Kilimanjaro National Park Gate early in the morning, and the drive took about 50 minutes. The journey passed through the village of Machame (located on the lower slopes of the mountain).  Once everyone reached the Park Gate, they made their final preparations for the climb with a final tuning of their gear and Sean checking everyone into the Park.  During this time, the Porters were arranging their packs containing the food, water, firewood, and other equipment they’ll take up to keep everyone on the expedition healthy and comfortable. Once leaving the Park Gate, they walked through the rain forest on a winding trail.  Lower down, it was muddy and slippery.  Gaiters and trekking poles were used to make this part of the journey a bit easier. Sean reported it was foggier than normal, but it was short lived and rolled out by the time they reached Machame Hut (Camp 1).  Everyone reached the Machame Hut (Camp 1) where they made camp, rested, enjoyed a hot dinner, and went to sleep. On this day, they started at an elevation of about 5,000 feet, and after a 5 hour hike to Machame Hut (Camp 1) they reached an altitude of 3,100 meters (~10,170 ft). The communication at Machame Hut (Camp 1) was very spotty due to the thick rain forest canopy, but Sean was able to give the following dispatch:  “The Flag being taken up is being carried by each member of the Team.  Ken Doppelt carried it the first half of today’s leg, and Sharon Evans carried it the rest of the way to Machame Hut (Camp 1).  Christine Hall also wanted to let her Mom know she’s doing great and having a wonderful first day.  Everyone else is doing well and in high spirits!” If anyone wants to send a short message to anyone/everyone over there, email [email protected] and it will be sent to them.  This is a great way to let them hear from “back home”, and keeps them from being too homesick. Lastly for today, all the donations already made via Crowdrise have been greatly appreciated!  They are going to a great cause, and we cannot thank you enough for your support.  You can continue to donate and support CancerClimber and the rest of the 2014 Kili Team by going to https://www.crowdrise.com/KilimanjaroExpedition2014, and it encourages the Team to Keep Climbing up Kili as they hear of the day’s total donations.  For everyone that donates from today until everyone is safely down and off the mountain, we’ll mention you right here on the BLOG…and let’s just say be entered into a contest to receive a “PRIZE” when Sean and everyone return stateside! Hopefully tomorrow when the communication is better Sean will be able to call back and leave an audio message (with everyone there being able to say Hi) which will be posted right here on the BLOG for all to hear! Enjoy the below pictures of the […]…read more

Slide 1

Sean Swarner voted one of the top eight most inspirational people of all time… As Seen On……read more

Slide 2

He is the only person in history to have accomplished what he has and inspires millions around the world.…read more

Slide 3

Sean’s story is not just about surviving cancer, it’s about persistence, determination, and the relatable common thread of overcoming obstacles in order to achieve success.…read more

Slide 5

It all begins with one step. With his unique speaking style, Sean takes you on a personal journey through life’s obstacles, challenges, and hardships to instill in you the mindset and vision needed to accomplish nearly any goal imaginable. Sean reveals lessons learned through an unparalleled story as well as unique tools he personally used and continues to use in business and in life. He demonstrates and empowers listeners with unlimited potential through the seemingly impossible. Using his countless adventures to directly relate on a personal level, Sean shares the knowledge he has gained to help guide you to your definition of success. It all begins with one step. For Sean, it went from being bed-ridden for nearly a year to the summit of Mt. Everest.…read more

Day 6…All Done!

Day 6 (Mweka Hut/Camp to Mweka Park Gate to Moshi) is done, and everyone is back safe and sound at the hotel in Moshi.  As mentioned in yesterday’s BLOG, everyone woke up, packed up their daypacks and porter bags, ate breakfast, and hiked the final 3 hours to Mweka Park Gate.  Sean signed everyone off the mountain, everyone got in the vans, and off to the hotel in Moshi they went.  Once at the hotel and after a long awaited warm shower, everyone just relaxed around the hotel before calling it a night. Tomorrow is Day 1 (Moshi to Lake Manyrar) of the Serengeti Safari, and we normally do not BLOG as often and as in much detail as we do during the Kili portion of the trip.  It’s more or less riding around the Serengeti in a Land Rover trying to find the Big 7, but we’ll try to post daily (or at least every other day) where they have been, what they most likely have seen, and what they have reported back.  You can still send them text messages to the satellite phone, and after everyone gets back from the day’s safari, cleaned up, and ate dinner at the hotel Sean downloads the day’s messages. Sean did not relay any satellite phone text messages today, but we can give a shout out and thanks to VICKY HAYDEN and SHANNA PREVOST for their generous Crowdrise donations!  Sean and the CancerClimber Association depend on donations to be able to continuing doing what they are doing, and thank you Vicky & Shanna for all your support! Keep sending FREE satellite messages to the 2013 Kili Team!  Visit www.iridium.com, at the top of the page click “Send a Satellite Message”, in the “To” field make sure to enter the code (satellite phone #): 881632511299, then type away and send.  Your message will be delivered to them in Africa…all thanks to USSecure Net! Thanks to everyone (Sean,  the 2013 Kili Team, Guides, Porters, Cooking Crew, Sat Phone Texters, Crowdrise Donors, and the followers of this year’s Team and BLOGs) for making this year’s Kili Climb a success, and it could not have been done with you…Kuche Kuche! Finally, the below picture is taken at Mweka Gate Park.  The porters are piling up people’s porter bags before taking them to the vans to return to Moshi.…read more

Day 5…They Made It!

Day 5 (SUMMIT DAY) began at…oh what the heck, we’ll just cut to the chase and let you know EVERYONE made it to the summit!!! As mentioned in yesterday’s BLOG, everyone was up by 11pm, put on their gear, headed to the Mess Tent for last minute instructions and details, had a cup of tea and some biscuits, and started hiking up around midnight.  It’s a long, chilly night-hike, going very slow (pole pole…[poh-lay] slowly slowly in Swahilli), and stopping frequently to rest & keep hydrated.  A couple hours hike below Stella Point (picture below), which is a 40-minute hike away from Uhuru Peak (the highest point on Kibo), one of the most spectacular sunrises ever to be seen is happening.  As the sun rises, the temperature does as well and that feeling of “the light at the end of the tunnel” is realized and everyone’s adrenaline and excitement level begins to climb.  Once at Stella Point, the Team is surprised with a cup of warm tea (that the porters brought up for everyone) and a small rest period to enjoy the view at the Crater Rim. After enjoying the summit for about a half hour, it’s back down the mountain to Barafu Camp…but not on the same trail as hiking up on (the down trail is a lot shorter & more “make your own way”).  Once at Barafu, the Kitchen Crew has snacks and fruit juice (the most delicious cup of mango or pineapple juice you’ll ever have) ready for everyone to indulge on.  Before heading further down the mountain, everyone swaps out their summit gear for lighter hiking gear, packs up their Porter Bags, and then hikes down to Mweka Camp.  Mweka Camp is still a good 5-6 hour hike down from Barafu, and after all the hiking that’s been done so far it’s no” walk in the park” getting to Mweka Camp. Sean messaged on his way down how impressed he was with everyone’s will power today, how happy he and everyone are, and everyone is on their way to Mweka Camp.  Mweka Camp is situated in the thick part of the rain forest region on Kili and the sat phone signal may not be strong enough to send out any messages (it’s hit & miss), but we’ll let you know of anything we receive once we get it. Once at Mweka Camp, it’s a short-lived festive environment (Summit Day is a grueling day and a lot happens from Camp 4, up to the summit, back down to Camp 4, and then finally to Mweka Camp) and after a quick rest and warm and hearty dinner it’s time to hit the tents and get one of the best night’s sleep one will ever get! After they wake up in the morning and have breakfast, Sean and the Team will hike the final 3 hours to Mweka Park Gate where Sean will sign everyone off the mountain, they’ll take a bus down through the coffee plantations, and finally […]…read more