Well, the boys are off! This is Judy (Mrs. RC) taking over the blog for the next few weeks. I dropped them off at Philly airport yesterday and they made it out before the snow. I was a little choked up to send them off for 3 weeks on this adventurous (to them) but scary (to me) endeavor. I am comforted by my faith in their remarkable capacity to endure Herculean hardships and, most importantly, their ability to make smart decisions in challenging situations.
Their 5 hour layover in Miami turned into 8, but they finally left for Santiago, Chili around midnight. They'll have another long layover before they fly to Mendoza this afternoon. Quite the effort to get there! However, given the assorted piles of climbing gear, backpacks, sunglasses, food, technical clothes, boots, etc all over our house these past weeks, sitting in an airport for 8 hours pales in comparison to the effort they put into getting ready! I've seen Randy and Anders get ready for many triathlons and other adventures over the years, but the amount of planning and preparation that went into this was unprecedented.
While they've been flying south to embark on their adventure, the rest of us enjoyed our first snow in Delaware, drank wine, played "Apples to Apples", and ate the rest of their mountain energy food they left behind (peanut M + M's and oreos). Thanks Guys!
I have a huge topographical map of Aconcagua on my wall, lots of weather and climbing sites bookmarked on my computer, and their promise to check in by satellite phone daily. I will do my best to keep you updated on their progress. I am not quite the "stat" guru that Randy is, so you might not have as many numbers, charts, and graphs as usual, but maybe, like me, you skip over those anyway! Feel free to email me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org