Lonnie Dupre is pinned down on Mt. McKinley by 100 mph winds

Lonnie Dupre, the Minnesota adventurer who wants to be the first person to climb Alaska's Mt. McKinley alone in January, has been pinned down in a snow cave below its summit for days now, riding out 100 mph winds.

He was scheduled to attempt North America's highest summit yesterday, but instead he's going to have to "secure his position" at about 3,000 feet below the mountain's 20,320-feet peak.

Dupre's an experienced winter expedition leader who lives in Grand Marais. He's mushed sled dogs across the North Pole and Eastern Russia. He's paddled a kayak through the Northwest Passage and around Greenland. He knows how to handle the cold.

But the clock is ticking since he began his quest on Jan. 7. He has enough supplies to last 38 days; he has seven days to reach the summit, and then face the long climb down and out of Denali National Park.

"Lonnie is dug in and prepared to wait out the storm," his expedition manager, Tom Suprenant, said in a website posting yesterday. "Patience is the key right now. He can't move up or down in these conditions. I talked with him this morning and he is doing well."

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