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Michael Ferrara Slowed by Heavy Snow in Continued Trek Across Alaska
Posted on April 11, 2011

Michael Ferrara

Michael Ferrara attempts to be the first to ski across Alaska—from Valdez to Prudhoe Bay—in order to raise awareness for civilian PTSD, which Michael has suffered from as the result of a 30-year career in search & rescue and other first responder services. Michael will be making this 800-mile journey with his dog, Lhotse. Our Be First program is an opportunity to get sponsored when you go for your own summit, whatever that may be. To learn more and submit your proposals, visit Be First.

By Michael Ferrara

We had a good start to this week. Got on the trail on a beautiful, sunny, cool morning. Lhotse and I traveled along the frozen Chilitna River—Alaska at its finest.

We set up camp at the end of the day under clear, blue skies. At about 4 a.m. I heard the sound of snow on the tent. When dawn broke I could see it was snowing about an inch an hour. This kept up for 36 hours.

Although the spot we camped was on a packed trail, the snow was rotten every where. By the time we broke camp, the floor of the tent had collapsed into a hole. Everything was soaked.

We started out and found the going tough—three feet of new snow over rotten base. Shortly thereafter we left the power line we were traveling on and headed to the roadside. Going on the shoulder was good until the plow came by.

Lhotse is having trouble with his left shoulder. I’m able to stay on top of the snow most of the time; Lhotse keeps breaking through. So we caught a ride back to TC to regroup, dry out and see how Lhotse is tomorrow.

The guide pants are remarkable. My bag is soaked, my tent is soaked, and on the highway I got repeatedly plastered by slush from passing trucks, but the pants kept me bone dry. I was really amazed when we got to the truck stop and I realized I was dry.

Weather has cleared so we’re headed back into the park. If it wasn’t for the difficult parts it wouldn’t be adventure, would it?

Author: - Monday, April 11th, 2011
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