The Cloud Ocean

FrontThumb1I have made this website to serve as a mountaineering and hiking journal, as a planning resource, and as a medium for sharing my photographs.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments!

AlpamayoThumbAlpamayo – August 2017
5947m Alpamayo is one of Peru’s most famous and popular climbs. A perfect snow pyramid when viewed from the north, an imposing fin of ice from the southwest, Alpamayo is considered by many to be the most beautiful mountain in the world.

Lenin ThumbPik Lenin – July 2017
7134m Pik Lenin is considered one of the ‘easiest’ 7000m climbs in the world. However, high altitude, long distances, and fierce weather make climbing Lenin more involving than its mild technical grade suggests. Trip Report and photographs from my 2017 expedition.

Lenin ThumbPik Lenin – July 2016
Trip report, schedule, and photographs from my 2016 Pik Lenin expedition.

Elbrus ThumbMount Elbrus – August 2016
5643m Mount Elbrus is the highest mountain in Europe. Located in southern Russia within the Caucasus mountain range, Elbrus is a dormant volcano and a non-technical climb. I climbed Elbrus via the standard southern route.

Luotuo ThumbCamel Peak West – 骆驼峰西峰 – February 2016
5484m Camel Peak (骆驼峰), so named for its twin summits’ resemblance to a camel’s back, stands at the northern end of the Changping Valley (长坪沟) nearby China’s Four Sisters Mountains/Siguniang Shan (四姑娘山). I made a solo winter ascent of Camel Peak West with a supported approach via the Changping Valley.

Luotuo ThumbMount Kinabalu – February 2016
4096m Mount Kinabalu is Malaysia’s highest mountain. Kinabalu is an accessible trekking peak famous for its sunrises, spectacular clouds, and the many interesting rock formations found on the upper mountain.

TocllarajuThumbTocllaraju – July 2015
6032m Tocllaraju is one of several sharp, stunning ice pyramids which pierce the skyline of Peru’s Cordillera Blanca. Tocclaraju presented a technical, aesthetic, physically challenging, and very rewarding climb.

YanapacchaThumbYanapaccha – July 2015
5460m Yanapaccha is one of Peru’s lesser known mountains, likely due to it’s relatively low altitude and greater difficulty when compared to nearby Pisco. Despite this, Yanapaccha offers a highly accessible yet technical climb with incredible summit views of surrounding peaks and valleys.

PiscoThumbPisco – July 2015
5752m Pisco West is one of Peru’s most popular climbs on account of its ease of access and low technical grade. Despite being an easy climb Pisco offers one of Peru’s most beautiful summit panoramas due to its central location within the Cordillera Blanca.

IshincaThumbIshinca – July 2015
5530m Ishinca is an accessible trekking peak located nearby Tocllaraju in the Ishinca Valley. Ishinca’s simple access and gentle slopes make it a perfect acclimation peak.

Aconcagua Trip ReportAconcagua, Solo Trip Report – February 2015
At 6962m Aconcagua is South America’s highest mountain and the highest peak outside of Asia. I climbed Aconcagua solo, spending a total of 14 days in the national park and reaching the summit on my 11th day. A brief overview of the route, summary of my itinerary in Argentina, and a detailed trip report.

Aconcagua Trip ReportAconcagua, Photographs – February 2015
Photographs from my solo Aconcagua climb, organized by date.

IllimaniThumbIllimani – August 2014
6438m Illimani is Bolivia’s second highest mountain, enormous and beautiful, hovering over nearby La Paz. I made an overnight climb of Illimani’s south summit and highpoint.

IllimaniThumbHuayna Potosí – August 2014
6088m Huayna Potosi is easily accessed from nearby La Paz. A fast and light overnight ascent and excellent summit views made for an exciting climb.

PeqAlpamayoThumbPequeño Alpamayo – July 2014
5370m Pequeño Alpamayo, part of the Condoriri group of peaks, is one of Bolivia’s most popular due to its elegant appearance and aesthetic standard route.

ChimborazoThumbChimborazo – January 2014
6310m Chimborazo is Ecuador’s highest mountain. 1500m of gain and fields of penitentes made for a satisfying, physically challenging climb to Chimborazo’s highpoint, the Whymper summit.

CotopaxiThumbCotopaxi – January 2014
5897m Cotopaxi, an active volcano, is Ecuador’s second highest mountain. I climbed under clear skies and enjoyed marvelous views of Cotopaxi’s volcanic crater and the surrounding high mountains.

CayambeThumbCayambe – January 2014
5790m Cayambe is a massive glaciated volcano, Ecuador’s 3rd highest mountain, and the world’s highest equatorial point. A fantastic, awe-inspiring sunrise from the summit and great conditions on the glacier made Cayambe an interesting, unforgettable climb.

IllinizaSurThumbIlliniza Sur – January 2014
5263m Illiniza Sur is Ecuador’s 6th highest. Steep and glaciated, Illiniza Sur is considered one of Ecuador’s most technically challenging climbs. I experienced superb snow conditions ascending the mountain’s normal route.

IllinizaNorteThumbIlliniza Norte – January 2014
5126m Illiniza Norte is Ecuador’s 8th highest. Fun, straightforward scrambling along the northeast ridge and convenient access to the mountain made Illiniza Norte an enjoyable hike and excellent acclimatization.

Orizaba ThumbMount Rainier – June 2013
Washington state’s 4392m Mount Rainier is the most glaciated and most prominent mountain in the lower United States and the highest of the Cascade Range.  I climbed Rainier via the Emmons-Winthrop route, guided by IMG.

Orizaba ThumbMount Shasta – June 2013
Standing alone in northern California, 4322m Mount Shasta is the state’s fifth highest mountain and second highest of the Cascade Range. I climbed Mount Shasta by the standard Avalanche Gulch route, using a high camp at Helen Lake.

Orizaba ThumbMount Goode – June 2013
Hiking and camping with perfect weather in California’s beautiful Sierra Nevada. A scenic hiking route beneath granite peaks and past high mountain lakes to the top of 3988m Mount Goode.

Orizaba ThumbPico de Orizaba – December 2012
5636m Pico de Orizaba is the highest mountain in Mexico, and the third highest in North America. I climbed the north route up Orizaba over two days, with perfect weather and great conditions on the Jamapa glacier.

Orizaba ThumbIztaccihuatl – December 2012
5230m Iztaccihuatl is Mexico’s third highest mountain. I hiked Iztaccihuatl over three days as acclimatization for Pico de Orizaba, but its great views made it a worthwhile hike in its own right.

Orizaba ThumbMount Kilimanjaro – August 2012
Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak, at 5895m, is the highest point in Africa.  I did a six day unsupported hike of the Rongai route, passing the jagged, awe-inspiring slopes of Mawenzi, Kilimanjaro’s second highest volcanic summit.

Orizaba ThumbMount Meru – August 2012
I hiked Mount Meru, Tanzania’s second highest, over three days as acclimatization for Kilimanjaro. Interesting volcanic terrain and wildlife on the lower mountain made for a scenic hike.

Orizaba ThumbZhongyangjian Shan – 中央尖山 – August 2012
Three days of hiking deep into Taiwan’s central mountains to 3705m Zhongyangjian Shan, one of Taiwan’s remotest and most visually awe-inspiring mountains.

Orizaba ThumbSnow Mountain North Peak – 雪山北峰 – July 2012
Two days spent hiking the north ridge of Snow Mountain, Taiwan’s second highest at 3886m. A rough camp on top of the ridge, terrific views, tremendous cliff faces, and exciting terrain.

Orizaba ThumbChilai Shan – 奇萊山 – May 2012
Famous for accidents and foul weather, ‘black’ Chilai Shan is one of Taiwan’s most beautiful mountains.  A two day hike in perfect weather across the main Chilai ridge, from the steep and imposing 3607m North Peak to the aesthetically positioned 3560m Main Peak.

Orizaba ThumbWuling Sixiu Mountains – 武陵四秀 – May 2012
The incredibly scenic Wuling Sixiu mountains are a series of four 3000m+ mountains east of Snow Mountain. A three day trip with great views of the surrounding mountain ridges, and fantastic hiking terrain.

Orizaba ThumbNorth / West Hehuan Shan – 合歡山 – April/May 2012
One night of camping and one day of hiking on Hehuan Shan’s North/West 3000m+ ridgeline. Pastoral alpine meadows, rhododendron flowers, and fantastic views.

Orizaba ThumbJade Mountain Seven Peaks – 玉山七峰 – April 2012
3952m Jade Mountain is Taiwan’s highest.  An ambitious three day journey up the Main Peak of Jade, along with six other nearby 3000m+ mountains.

Orizaba ThumbBeidawu Shan – 北大武山 – March 2012
Taiwan’s southernmost 3000m+ mountain, Beidawu Shan is famous as one of Taiwan’s five sacred mountains. Two days of hiking with great views of the ‘cloud ocean’, interesting history, and a highly enjoyable trail.

Orizaba ThumbNanhuda Shan – 南湖大山 – February 2012
A four day trip up remote 3742m Nanhuda Shan in terrible weather. Constant rain, sleet, and fog obscured the views, but Nanhuda Shan still offered up some very enjoyable hiking terrain.

Orizaba ThumbSnow Mountain Main Peak – 雪山主峰 – January 2012
Across snowfields, into an ancient forest, and up through a unique glacial cirque. Three days hiking up Taiwan’s 3886m second highest in the middle of winter. Snow, winter weather, and wonderful scenery.

Orizaba ThumbJade Mountain Main Peak – 玉山主峰 – December 2011
Along a steep cliff face and through a deep mountain valley, inclement weather near the top didn’t prevent this from being an enjoyable climb.  A two day trip to the 3952m Main Peak of Jade Mountain, Taiwan’s highest.

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