Days 5-9: The Ascent
Mount Sidley offers several interesting route options, including a longer easy ascent from the north side and a steeper climb up the west ridge from the Bennett Saddle. The route that you climb will be decided by your team and your guide, based on the group's skill and experience.
From base camp to the summit involves approximately 7300 ft (2225m) of elevation gain. We climb alpine style, setting two intermediate camps on the mountain and carrying all of our food and equipment with us. We may ski to low camp on hard packed, windblown snow, but most of the climb will be done with crampons.
Summit day offers spectacular views as we follow the summit ridge along the rim of the caldera. Below us, the sheer walls of the Weiss Amphitheater drop away 4000 ft (1200m) and neighbouring Mount Waesche tempts us with its snowy slopes. We weave our way between a maze of fantastical ice 'mushrooms'. These snow features are formed by wind and moisture depositing rime ice on small obstacles, evolving into massive structures over the years. Following our summit we return to high camp, and then we will retrace our steps back to our base camp.