Grand Marais Arctic adventurer Lonnie Dupre had "a day at the office" Wednesday after returning to his base camp at 7,200 feet on Alaska's Denali.
The 51-year-old Dupre returned to the base camp after his unsuccessful third attempt to scale Denali alone in the winter. Had he made it, he would have been the first solo climber to accomplish the challenge. He reached 17,200 feet before life-threatening conditions forced him to turn back. At that point, dangerous weather and snow conditions combined with dwindling food and fuel led Dupre to turn back. Denali is 20,320 feet in altitude.
His support team at One World Endeavors reported Wednesday night that Dupre had "a day at the office if you will. Lonnie spent his first full day at basecamp collecting his thoughts, organizing gear and visiting with his neighbor Masatoshi (Kuriaki) about hundred yards away. Masatoshi, is in the process of making his seventh attempt at summiting Mount Hunter."
The team reported also reported that "weather permitting we should be able to fly into base camp in the next couple of days." The flight will take Dupre off Denali and back to the Alaska community of Talkeetna.
In a related story from The Associated Press, Alaska's senior senator has once again introduced legislation to officially name the mountain as Denali. It has been known for more than a century as Mount McKinley, named for the in the 1890s by a prospector for then-US President William McKinley.
Senator Lisa Murkowski says Denali might not be the name that people in the Midwest recognize. But she says it has long been the name in Alaska.
Denali is an Athabascan word meaning "the high one." It is the name recognized by the Alaska Board of Geographic Names. Earlier attempts to change the name to Denali beyond Alaska were blocked in the US Congress.
The debate over the name change also goes back decades. Murkowski introduced a version of her bill during the last Congress, where it died. She said Tuesday that she expects some opposition from those who have only known the mountain as Mount McKinley.
Indeed, a spokesman for Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan says Ryan has already introduced legislation to preserve the name Mount McKinley. Ohio is the birthplace of McKinley.
Dupre's expedition in pictures, words and audio can be found at www.oneworldendeavors.com.