- Melissa Arnot
- Alex Barber
- Gabriel Barral
- Jake Beren
- Zeb Blais
- Katrina Bloemsma
- Katie Bono
- Anne Gilbert Chase
- Sean Collon
- Leon Davis
- Elias de Andres Martos
- Cody Doolan
- Paul Edgren
- Mark Falender
- Leah Fisher
- Eric Frank
- Steve Gately
- Josh Gautreau
- Thomas Greene
- Casey Grom
- Dave Hahn
- Walter Hailes
- Tim Hardin
- Mike Haugen
- Bryan Hendrick
- Andy Hildebrand
- Mike Hinckley
- Joe Horiskey
- Nick Hunt
- Tyler Jones
- J.J. Justman
- Levi Kepsel
- Mike King
- Adam Knoff
- Katy Laveck
- Ben Liken
- Josh Maggard
- Paul Maier
- Linden Mallory
- Lindsay Mann
- Andres Marin
- Jeff Martin
- Robert Montague
- Erik Nelson
- Chase Nelson
- Billy Nugent
- Brent Okita
- Logan Randolph
- Tyler Reid
- Dave Reynolds
- Kel Rossiter
- Geoff Schellens
- Shaun Sears
- Garrett Stevens
- Jason Thompson
- Mike Tomlinson
- Mark Tucker
- Mike Uchal
- Pete Van Deventer
- Alex Van Steen
- Ed Viesturs
- Maile Wade
- Mike Walter
- Seth Waterfall
- Solveig Waterfall
- Peter Whittaker
- Win Whittaker
- Bryson Williams
- Dan Windham
- Robby Young
Posts for Everest from 05/2011
Sara McGahan, Linden Mallory and myself set out from Base Camp just after 5 AM on a final mission through the Khumbu Ice fall. It was meant to be our summit bid. When we reached the first series of ladders over crevasses, we took a break. Linden and I were pleased that we’d reached this point relatively quickly, but it was clear that Sara’s mind was not entirely on the day’s climbing. She spoke up to say that she wasn’t entirely sure she wanted to go through with the planned week-long summit push. We suggested retreating to Base Camp in order to reassess and Sara agreed that would be the best course of action. During the morning at base, Sara bravely grappled with a heavy choice. She wasn’t alone, of course, having the counsel of her Dad there in person and her Mom on the phone, but ultimately, the choice was hers to make. In some ways, despite the danger and brutally hard physical work of a summit push, choosing to go on would have been the easier option. Sara made the more difficult choice. She ended her bid to get up Mount Everest at age 16 and she did it with a smile. Bill and Sara discussed things a bit and made clear that they didn’t want that decision to end the greater expedition… even though they are the expedition’s principal members.
After a few more talks, it was decided that Bill and Sara would leave Base Camp by helicopter in the morning, bound for home, while Linden and I, along with Kaji, Tchherring and Dawa, would continue to work toward the summit. Linden and I intend to lighten our packs and to tighten our itinerary some in order to fit in the “weather window” we believe will materialize in a few days. We won’t carry nearly as much emergency gear, now that we aren’t guiding, but we still want to be responsible Everest citizens… able to help ourselves and our teammates out of a jam and perhaps even to be of use to others in peril. But definitely as we begin this new venture, the packs will be lighter and the pace will be faster. Linden and I will go all the way to Camp 2 tomorrow, we’ll rest a day and recheck the forecasts, and then we’ll aim to hop directly up to Camp 4 and set out for the summit that same night. There is still the usual amount of mystery in it for us… we don’t actually know what the weather will do (our forecasts are good, but the mountain doesn’t much care about such things) we don’t actually know what our bodies will do. Linden Mallory is a strong and experienced climber and guide, but he will be venturing nearly a vertical mile beyond familiar heights. I’ve been up top a few times and should enjoy all the benefits of muscle memory and brimming self-confidence, except… my 20 year span of venturing to 28,000 and 29,000 ft has been anything but smooth, easy and predictable. But I want to see that high up world again. I want Linden to see it as well.
I would have loved for Bill and Sara to see the sunrise from up there near the top of the world and despite the pride I take in knowing they both came to mature and sensible decisions… I do feel a slight letdown in knowing that “guiding” this time around did not result in standing on top with my clients. On the other hand, my climbers are happy and healthy and excited about seeing their family and their home. They both climbed safely up and down dangerous slopes for weeks on end, reaching ridiculous heights. And they saw a number of spectacular sunrises, sunsets, moonrises and moonsets through gargantuan mountain passes. Sara may write in the coming days about her decision and perhaps it will become clear then as to just how completely we’ve failed (for now) in our bid to turn her into just another self-absorbed, egotistical, mountain-obsessed, risk-addicted climber.
RMI Guide Dave Hahn
The summit bid is getting close. This is how I know:
1. Dave, Linden and Tuck (aka Mark Tucker who is called everything but ‘Mark’) are constantly huddled around the latest weather report, which seem to come out every 2 to 3 hours. The weather forecast is murky (which is better than it being bad). What Dave, Linden and Tuck seem to know is that no big storm is on the horizon, but the jet stream seems to be on the move. The question is “when” the jet stream is going to move, and then how fast its going to move. We do not want any of our team high on the mountain when the jet stream is over us. We know its going to be cold up there, but what we want to work hard to avoid is high winds. Here is the understatement of the year: the level of difficulty in predicting the weather at 29,000 feet is quite high.
2. Lots of other climbing teams are comparing notes on when to start their bid. It seems that other teams have different forecasts and information, but the conclusions seem to be the same: even the people making the forecasts don’t have a high degree of confidence in them, and that the forecasts are uncertain.
3. Our entire climbing team of 7 people seem to be fully rested and well (not sick). This means that they have been down long enough to have their full strength and are ready to start climbing when it is determined that its time to go. I keep bugging Sara to “eat more” and “drink more” to build up her strength but she 1) knows what to do, and 2) is tired of listening to me. Everyone on the team has lost their baby fat, some even a touch of their adult fat, on this trip, but we have to keep trying to eat as much as possible to keep our strength.
4. Our Sherpa team has done a phenomenal job of strategically positioning gear on the mountain. We have tents positioned at Camps 1, 2, 3 and 4 (although the Camp 2 tents are the only ones ‘up’ - the rest are in bags - due to the ever present threats of high winds), and our oxygen bottles and gear are at Camps 3 and 4. We have other gear (food, safety equipment, etc.) at different camps throughout the mountain. It really has been a herculean task to get things positioned.
5. Today we are taking showers. We always take showers close to the day of departure.
6. Sara is trying to get a massive amount of history homework done. Sara always tries to get a lot of work done prior to a week long climb. It is like cramming before a test I guess. She is massively reading (and highlighting) a text book on the Byzantine Empire (Sara occasionally reads something to our group about the era at dinner, and we all pretend that we know what she is talking about).
7. Our entire climbing team is charging all their cell phones an Ipods/Itouches. We always make sure we are a fully charged team as we start off. The Sherpa’s focus is on charging their cell phones, which work at the higher camps for some reason, (the non-Sherpa’s cell phone coverage doesn’t work above base camp). Westerners have to use a service called Ncell, but locals are allowed to use a different cell phone provider that has better coverage up high. Its one of the mysteries of Everest in 2011.
8. Sara, Dave and Linden have all picked out food to eat at Camp 4 (at the South Col). While the team only hopes to stay one night at Camp 4 (at 26,000 feet), they are bringing enough food for up to 3 days (just in case). This food consists of a lot of freeze dried dinners (Mountain House Lasagna), candy bars, cup-o-soups, cheese sticks, etc. The group hopes to climb to Camp 4 one day and then leave for the summit in the middle of that same night, but if a storm pops up (or even high winds), they may stay at Camp 4 for longer.
9. I have picked out a “get fired up” movie for Sara to watch tonight: The Fighter. The movie (starring Mark Walhberg) is based upon a true story, and has several messages, one of which is what incredible sacrifice and determination it takes to be a champion.
10. The Calendar. It is May 16th. I know we are getting close for a try at the summit because we are getting close to the Monsoon showing up. And when the monsoons start, the mountain is closed for the season.
11. All of Everest BC is abuzz with groups getting ready for their summit bids, monitoring their teams on the mountain, or just leaving. Several camps are already gone, having accomplished (or not accomplished) whatever they set out to do.
12. The physicians here are incredibly busy. The HRA (The Himalayan Rescue Association) doctors are a group of physicians whose costs are covered by the various climbing groups to treat clients, guides, porters and Sherpas, They do an incredible job. Many patients are treated face to face, but other times the HRA docs are called upon to help treat climbers who are high on the mountain. They are on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and are currently working (as I write this) at an incredible pace under tremendous pressure.
13. We are almost out of Coca Colas. When we started this trip Sara and I ordered 24 twelve ounce Coca Colas (for about $40) to have at Base Camp. We have been enjoying them, but self rationing them, since we arrived at base camp on April 6th. We are down to one Coca Cola. I think we are going to split it.
14. Our camp is melting. We live on the Khumbu glacier and our camp is noticeably melting every day. Our tent sites, which were originally flat, are now not, but we are living with it because, hey, the glacier may melt them flat again. Pools of water form in our camp daily and then freeze at night. The base to our Stupa is rapidly melting. We may have to do some construction work in the days ahead.
15. Avalanches are now so common we don’t pay much attention to them. When we originally got to Basecamp we would rush out of our tents to see an avalanche coming off one of the many surrounding mountains. Avalanches are now so common (due to the warmer weather) that we no longer rush to view them, or even pay much attention to them, unless they are in the Khumbu Ice fall. Needless to say, the ice fall is an extremely scary place.
So, in summary, this is how I know that our summit bid is getting close: food picking, charging, showers, homework, doctors busy, dwindling Coca Colas, etc..
I am both nervous and excited for Sara. I know how hard she has trained and worked for an attempt at the summit, but I also know how much luck is involved in actually summitting. I know she is very determined and “wants it” very badly, but I also how easily things could change to prevent a summit bid. Three years ago Sara and I tried to summit Mt. Elbrus and bad weather stopped our entire group. Then last year Sara and I went back to Elbrus and had a perfect weather day and made it to the top in about 6 hours of easy walking. Mountain climbing is a fickle business, and it can be
extremely rewarding, and also extremely disappointing. I know that Sara is strong enough to climb this mountain, but one never knows if things will work out.
So, that’s it from Base Camp for today.
Today marks our fifth full day back at Base Camp since coming down from our third rotation on the mountain. The days have managed to slip by surprisingly quickly, filled with big meals, visits from friends, time spent reading, playing cards, throwing horseshoes, and most of all - resting. Tuck organized the 2011 Everest Base Camp Horseshoes Tournament a few days ago and filled our small camp with dozens of people from various teams bent on vying for the coveted crown. Besides a few errant throws - we lost a cooking pot to a high flying shoe and somehow managed to tangle a horseshoe in the prayer flags strung overhead - it was a really enjoyable afternoon.
Yesterday Dave, Sara, and I spent the morning exploring the lower reaches of the Khumbu Glacier surrounding Base Camp, making our way through the tongues of rock moraine and among the fins of vertical ice that jut up from the glacier. But the overarching focus of these days has been on resting, and it has been paying off. Dave, Sara, and I are all feeling the gains from our leisurely days down here. The solid nights of sleep have calmed any minor altitude coughs and strength is seeping back into the legs. Our Sherpa team descended a few days ago as well and the whole team is now down at Base Camp, enjoying the rest and preparing for the final push.
Every morning over the past few days we pull up the latest forecast and discuss the options for our summit bid. This season’s weather has been unsettled to say the least and that trend has continued into the summit season. Several teams have made summit attempts over the past few days and the occasional eruption of cheering and clanging pots and oxygen bottles can be heard coming from camps as they celebrate the radio call from their climbers standing on the summit. But the summit season so far has been far from smooth and dozens of climbers have faced real challenges up there, battling high winds and cold temperatures in their attempts. While the temperatures and the snowfall are factors, our big concern is the wind. The jet stream is still playing around this part of the Himalayas, occasionally drawing close to Everest and then receding again, and causing nothing but confusion for the forecast models. The 60+mph winds reported yesterday are a sure indication the jets proximity. And so we are sitting down here, reading over the forecast every morning, hoping that these small snippets of good weather that lay scattered over the upcoming days materialize into a substantial window for us to feel confident to head up on our summit bid.
Thus begins the waiting game, a trial in its own right. To sit in Base Camp after so many weeks of hard work, feeling ready and prepared for the summit bid, but stalling over the unstable weather conditions, is a huge mental challenge. On occasion a helicopter lands in Base Camp, picking up climbers returning from the summit - both those who made it successfully and those who did not but battled the cold and wind nonetheless - and whisks them back to Kathmandu in dozens of minutes. It’s easy to let the mind wander to all of the luxuries and comforts that await the passengers when they disembark, but not a very helpful exercise. Nevertheless, the focus around camp remains, the days of rest are paying off, and our excitement is building for the upcoming climb. A great number of unknowns lie ahead of us, but we are feeling ready. Tomorrow we will wake up, print out the forecast, sit down in the morning sun to look over what the forecast models predict for wind speeds, temperatures, and precipitation amounts. Hopefully that window we know is coming begins to materialize.
RMI Guide Linden Mallory
Today is another gorgeous day here at Everest Base Camp. There isn’t a cloud in the sky, and with a little breeze the usual heat of the day is masked. This morning, Dave, Linden, and I took a walk down the medial moraine - the strip of rock that runs down the middle of the Khumbu glacier, and arrived back to camp just in time for lunch.
I hadn’t been on the lower part of the Khumbu glacier since we started our rotations up the mountain, and although Dave pointed out to me at that time how the glacier would be different in about a month or so, I couldn’t have imagined a more drastic change. The once frozen ice ponds are becoming lakes of glacier water, and rivers of melted ice are rushing down valley. Rocks are perched on ice pinnacles that haven’t melted due to the shade the rock provides, and water runs down 10-15ft icicles that hang off the still frozen part of the glacier.
Although I’ve climbed and hiked on multiple glaciers before, I’ve never lived on one for this long. Over the years I’ve heard so much about how quickly glaciers move and change, and have definitely seen slight changes while being on them, but have never seen with my own eyes how quickly they move and to what an extent they can change in just a months time.
On a different note, down here in Base Camp teams are now hustling with preparations for summit bids. With the route now fixed up high people have been summiting everyday. Yesterday, Tshering and Uberaj both carried to the South Col to help prepare us for our summit bid. Tshering is now safely down at Base Camp and Uberaj stayed up higher on the mountain and is holding down the fort at Camp Two.
Over the last few days I’ve been trying to rest as much as possible. I’ve made significant progress on my English and Science projects, but besides that and a few walks here and there, I’ve been sleeping, eating and drinking as much as I can. As Dave always tells me, “rest with a purpose,” and I’ve been trying to get myself in as good shape as I can be to prepare myself forour own summit bid.
Time is running short here at Base Camp. Virtually everyone will be gone from here in the next 3 weeks as we all try to fit our summit bids in before the monsoons hit in June. So, while we rest, it’s weird to think that everyone here (about 350 people) will all move out shortly.
Thanks for following along on our adventure!
The weather at Everest Base Camp is cloudy but the temperatures are nice. We have heard that more climbers have successfully reached the top of Mt. Everest.
Kaji and Dawa after going to the South Col yesterday have comeback to Base camp. Lam Babu has also returned to Base Camp from Camp 2.
Tsering and Yubarj plan on carrying loads to the South Col tomorrow early morning early if the weather allows.
Speaking of weather, the forecast for lighter winds has been adjusted to more moderate speeds, we have heard of a number of teams adjusting their summit schedule to a later date. Everyone is looking for that perfect weather window. Some teams are in position for summit attempts tonight and tomorrow night.
Our team at Base Camp continues with the resting and eating routine. We are working hard to fatten up Dave, Linden, Sara and Bill. We had a few friends over today to throw some horseshoes. The focus now is keeping track of the forecasts and monitoring resting patterns. How much simpler could life get.
RMI Guide Mark Tucker
On The Map
Now it gets interesting in Everest-ville. Chherring, Dawa Jamba and Kaji made a significant contribution to our team’s potential success today. They got up around 2 AM, put on big packs at ABC and climbed all the way to the South Col, establishing what will be our High Camp at 26,000 feet. All three were safely back down the Lhotse Face and into ABC by noon. They’ll hope to repeat that extremely big morning of work in the next few days… boosting enough tents, fuel, oxygen and miscellaneous heavy stuff up to the Col so that the door will be open for our summit bid.
Just when that summit bid will take place is uncertain at this point. To be sure, when Linden, Sara and myself came down from ABC yesterday we were bucking the local trend. There were dozens of our friends, fellow guides and Sherpas pushing up the lower mountain with summit stars in their eyes already. This season is turning out to be different from those in recent memory in that the weather window is open early and people are taking advantage. This has long been a hope for those of us who habitually attempt Everest…“If only the weather could be good enough, early enough so that everybody wasn’t going for the summit on the same four crowded days in late May” Climbers are getting to the top now… we heard that Apa Sherpa got his record 21st summit of the mountain today… British climber Kenton Cool is already back home after a head-spinning and nearly unheard of three-week round-trip to the summit (we are on our seventh or eighth week). In the next couple of days it should get quite busy at the top of the world as the bulk of the assembled expeditions look to get it all done while the jet-stream seems to be otherwise occupied.
If it seems like I’m jealous then perhaps I am… but only mildly. A good shot at the top for others is not necessarily a good shot for us. Having just come down the mountain from our last round of acclimatization yesterday, I’m satisfied enough with our exertions and not yet restless and bored enough to be jealous of anyone else’s. Although the three of us are each feeling strong and healthy now, we need a good chunk of rest and we cling to the belief that a viable weather window later in the month will be warmer and quieter than a viable weather window in the middle of the month… we want every single advantage.
That is why we were trying to get up to sleep at Camp 3 a few days ago. Without question it would have been a big plus for our small team to have the experience and confidence that results from an admittedly dreadful night in a tent at 24,000 ft. But it was clear to each of us that Sara was getting worn out in the most-recent effort to reach that camp… who knows why? Perhaps the last rest period in Base Camp wasn’t long enough… perhaps the windy-night at Camp 1 deprived her of the sleep she needed… perhaps the hot sun in the Western Cwm or the cold morning at ABC drained her reserves… perhaps, perhaps, perhaps… it doesn’t really matter. It is a huge disadvantage that younger climbers suffer from -that they don’t always know their bodies well enough to know just why and when they’ll be tired instead of burly. But in any case, Sara was getting worked by the climb to Camp 3… she knew it, I knew it, and Linden knew it. We all were completely clear that despite this, she could make it up to the camp under her own power and spend the night if necessary. But the day’s goal no longer seemed to be a smart one of it meant getting our most important climber exhausted on the doorstep to the “death zone”. It became crystal clear that we needed to focus on a bigger picture than a counter-productive practice night at Camp 3… we needed to get down, to get in a good rest and to get focused on a summit bid that fit our needs.
And so here we are… listening to other teams high up on the hill, cheering on our own Sherpa team of heroes, eating everything in sight, beginning to talk just a bit of things we might do in June, keeping Tuck occupied with horseshoes, card games and dice, enduring daily snow showers, making one another laugh and trying to stay focused on a big picture that involves going to 29,035 ft soon… and coming down safely.
RMI Guide Dave Hahn
Dave, Sara and Linden descended from Camp 2 in nice weather only to have the last half hour to Base Camp turn into a snow zone. Base Camp has remained in and out of snow showers all day. The climbers are doing well, enjoying the thick air of 17,575’ and getting into the rest and eating routine. Bill could not be happier with Sara now back at Base Camp.
Our Sherpa team continues to prepare the upper camps for the summit bid. Lam Babu carried a load from Base Camp to Camp 2 today. Tsering, Dawa and Kaji were up early at Camp 2 with plans to carry to the South Col but due to snow and poor visibility they remained at Camp 2. They will take a look at it again tomorrow and hopefully we’ll have a nice report from the climbing team tomorrow.
Many other teams are leaving Base Camp today beginning their push for the summit. We wish them well!
Today marks the twenty-first anniversary of my summit of Mount Everest. (Mark reached Everest’s summit on May 10th, 1990 as a member of Jim Whittaker’s Peace Climb along with climbers from Russia and China via the North East Ridge. Happy anniversary Tuck!)
Till next time,
RMI Guide Mark Tucker
Summer is here this morning, this afternoon that will be a different story.
Tsering, Kaji, and Dawa left Camp 2 a half an hour before Dave, Sara and Linden for the climb up the Lhotse face to Camp 3. Lam Babu has now arrived at Base Camp after going the other direction from Camp 2. Dave reported good conditions ,weather and route wise on the face with incredible views of the surrounding mountains.
Up above he could see some people going for the summit of Everest, yet another wave of climbers getting a chance at standing on top. It is great to see the groups getting a shot at the top over many days. instead of a lot of teams concentrated on the same window of time. I have started a push to the top a couple of times with eighty or so other climbers leaving high camp at about the same time. It’s always a struggle thinking about what the near future could bring. More than often things work out but if they don’t it can make for an even tougher day. Enough good experienced mountaineers can be a good thing to have around on the summit push, the right amount is a bit by chance.We will have a tight strong group that can handle most anything.
Dave and Sara have decided that 23,000 ft, a good chunk of the way to Camp 3 is going to be enough for today. They have prioritized the next rotation as the objective, the idea of sleeping at Camp 3 tonight was a good plan, but the decision we make out in the field, are the ones that make the difference. They have just radioed in that they are off the face, heading to Camp 2. Linden is still climbing toward Camp 3 to get familiar with the route and location of Camp 3, another altitude records for Linden today. He will also come back to Camp 2 for the night.
The Sherpa team worked all morning chopping and digging into the ice for tent platforms which will be used in the future. Instead of putting up the tents today they have then in a duffel bag secure to the site and will set them up on the summit push. No sense in subjecting them to wind and snow for now.
So a good day for training and working hard up high. Back to Basecamp tomorrow, for the final resting period, with the summit push as the new focus.
RMI Guide Mark Tucker
RMI Guide Dave Hahn checks in from Camp 2.
Yesterday we left off with the group of Dave, Linden and Sara “hunkerin’ down” at Camp I for the night, and, given what happened last night, we are sure glad that they did.
Our climbing team was hit by huge winds last night at Camp I. In fact, the entire mountain (all the camps) was blasted with extremely high winds and frigid cold. Many tents were lost in the upper camps. Our team survived the night by 1) checking and re-checking the tents to make sure they were secure, 2) eating a big freezed-dried meal for dinner, and then 3) diving into their extremely warm sleeping bags.
Sara, who was sleeping in her own tent, radioed me this morning after the winds subsided and said that she sure missed me last night because a couple of times she thought that the tent was going to blow away, and my extra weight would have been helpful. So, to be clear, my daughter missed me for my weight. So touching.
After the sun came up the winds died down considerably and the team was able to move from Camp I to Camp II by noon today. Before leaving Camp I they took down the two tents and stuffed them in duffel bags and stored them away (just in case another big “blow” comes along).
The entire team is healthy and happy resting at Camp 2 for a big day tomorrow. Assuming the weather cooperates, the team is going to move up to Camp 3 to sleep. Their sleep at Camp 3 will be assisted by bottled
oxygen. Then on Tuesday (the 10th) they are going to wake up and walk up toward Camp IV using oxygen, and then return all the way down to Camp 2. The goal is for the team to be back at Base Camp on the 11th, and to beready for a summit bid starting May 18th.
RMI Guide Dave Hahn checks in from Camp 2 (ABC).
Today Dave Hahn, Linden Mallory and Sara McGahan woke up at 4:30 a.m. for a 5 a.m. departure for Camp 1. After a hearty breakfast of rice pudding (not a huge fan, but Linden and Dave are) cheese omlettes, toast and Lucky Charms (Sara always has the Lucky Charms) the team paid its respects’ at our camp’s Stupa before departing. How they paid their respects was by circling the Stupa in a clockwise rotation on their way out, and taking a moment at the front of the Stupa (which faces the ice fall) to pause/reflect/pray, and to also breathe in the burning juniper that had been lit.
On a lighter note, the team also took a moment to each throw a horseshoe while walking out. No ringers or leaner’s were recorded (not even close).
The walk up the icefall began as the sun was beginning its rise over Everest and Lhotse. The trail has gone through some changes over the past week as the Khumbu Icefall continues its movements. The team encountered several new challenges, including one spot in which a crevasse had opened up. There was no ladder around, so the team had to jump over the gap. Sara broke out her skills from junior high field day and long jumped over a crevasse. Well done. And some people say that they never learn meaningful skills in school!
The team was able to make it up to Camp 1 just before 10 am. Dave reported that it is very quiet at Camp 1. Hardly any people at all. It seems that most of the teams are now down at Base Camp beginning to rest for their summit pushes over the next few weeks. Our team spent most of the afternoon resting and napping, which, of course, is one of our teams’ strengths!
Three other members of our climbing team - Tsering Dorje, Dawa, Yubarj and Kaji (all except Lam Babu) - climbed to Camp 2 today with our South Col equipment, including oxygen tanks, masks, and regulators. This gear will be used by the entire team when they arrive at Camp 3 in a few days. They will be breathing oxygen at night and wearing the masks during their climb up toward the Col the following day. The grand plan is to return to Base Camp on the 11th and then rest for a week. If everything goes well, we hope for a summit bid to start around the 18th.
Life at Base Camp continues. Today our neighbor Hamid, who is from Iran, came over with some written questions for Sara. Hamid is involved with a Children’s Hospital that treats kids with Cancer. He is climbing to benefit the charity. He requested that Sara answer some questions (which are questions like “how did you get into climbing?” etc..) so that they can publish an article in their hospital newsletter. He also invited Sara to Iran to visit this summer. He is extremely nice (and has a daughter the same age as Sara) and he is VERY impressed with Sara.
So, in summary, the goals of the day (Camp 1, Camp 2, etc…) were all accomplished, and everyone feels well. As we say in Georgia, we are hunkerin’ down for a cold night and we will be up an at ‘em early tomorrow.
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