Entries By melissa arnot

Mt. Everest Expedition: Rest Day at ABC

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot | May 22, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 21,300'

Our team enjoyed a rest day at Camp 2 (ABC) today.  Their plan is to head for Camp 3 tomorrow. 

This really is the start of the Mt. Everest summit push in my eyes.  How the next two days go, can have real impact on the summit day.
It is so hard to try and maintain strength at these higher camps that you better hope the internal battery is charged, you will be drawing off of your reserves for sure.  The team is focusing on eating and hydrating, keeping their bodies strong and ready.  Four of our climbing Sherpa left Base Camp today and joined the climbers at ABC.  Everyone is doing well and looking forward to the next few days.

RMI Guide Dave Hahn is one of the best mountain guides in the business. With many expeditions under his belt, he knows how to climb this mountain.  The weather forecast still looks promising.  Good luck to the team!

RMI Guide Mark Tucker


RMI Guide Dave Hahn checks in from ABC on a rest day.

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5

Mt. Everest Expedition: Team Begins Summit Bid

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot | May 21, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 21,300'

This is Dave Hahn calling down from Camp 2 on Mt. Everest.  Finally! We are out of Basecamp and on our summit bid.  We had a great morning coming up.  The climbing route is actually in pretty good condition.  The ice fall is scary as ever but the Ice Fall Doctors have been doing a good job and we got through in pretty quick time.  It was a beautiful morning nice and clear and calm. 
The mountain is quieting down a little bit.  There were a lot of Sherpas carrying loads down today for expeditions that were finished.  So the mountain is quieting down and we think that is a hopeful sign for us.  The forecast is coming together and there are still a few teams still around that are on the same time frame as us.  We have been comparing notes.
Things are going pretty well.  Our Sherpa team is going to come up tomorrow to ABC.  We are going to rest tomorrow and get ready for the Lhotse Face and moving to Camp 3 the following day.  We are pretty optimistic.  We are all feeling really good right now and we are going to keep you informed.

RMI Guide Dave Hahn

The Lhotse Face as seen from Camp 2 in the Western Cwm.  Photo: Jake Norton Looking down the Western Cwm.  Photo: Michael Brown


RMI Guide Dave Hahn checks in from Camp 2.

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6

Mt. Everest Expedition: It’s Go Time!

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot, Mark Tucker | May 20, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 17,575'

Things are looking good for the team.  The wait should prove itself worth it, the weather window and the overall health of the team is like having the pole position at the Indy 500.  An early breakfast, and six plus hours of climbing should put the team at Camp 2 tomorrow.

We enjoyed a great pizza dinner send off tonight. Some last minute packing, and early to bed.

Go team go!

RMI Guide & Everest Basecamp Manager Mark Tucker

Everest Beyond the Prayer Flags at Basecamp

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5

Mt. Everest Expedition: Practicing Patience

Posted by: Melissa Arnot | May 03, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 17,575'

Arriving back at Base Camp always comes with a sigh of relief. Today was no different, except perhaps the sigh was bigger.  We spent five days and four nights at Camp 2, deep in the Western Cwm. The jet stream was sitting very near the top of Everest, which sounds an awful lot like a freight train roaring in the night. The purpose of this rotation was for our team to acclimatize and further prepare for our summit bid. We set out with the hopes of sleeping at Camp 2 and walking to Camp 3. Like always, you have to pause and listen to what the mountain is telling you. This season has been very windy and dry, and as we have been making plans to get high on the mountain, we have been hearing stories of rockfall coming from above. A certain amount of flexibility has been a vital part of our plan. Yesterday, we set out for a walk towards a new path up the Lhotse Face. The fixed line and route were just being established as we arrived, providing a seemingly safer way to access Camp 3. We enjoyed our walk (actually, that is a slight lie, as it was very very windy, but it did the trick of getting us some exercise) and headed back to our camp for lunch. The route has proven to us that it is dry and not welcoming travelers. It is the beginning of May. We need some new snow. Now we wait, now we listen. I am ready for some rest right now, as is the the team. So, for now I can find gratitude in being down at Base Camp, out of the wind, but back in the waiting game.

RMI Guide Melissa Arnot

Lhotse Face from Camp 2 in Western Cwm Looking down Western Cwm and Camp 2 from below burgshurnd

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2

Mt. Everest Expedition: Acclimatizing at ABC

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot | May 02, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 21,300'

Hello,

This is Dave Hahn calling from Advanced Base Camp on Mt. Everest.  Beautiful day today, it was kind of windy last night and wind continued during the day.  Roaring up above and just gusting down below where we were.  We went for a hike, a roped up hike with crampons and ice axes, exploring the upper end of the Western Cwm.  We went up to the start of a new climbing route, a new way of accessing the Lhotse face that a number of friends of ours were working hard to put in today.  We wanted to check out their efforts and get a look at the terrain over there.  So this a bit several hundred meters to one side of the existing route where it crosses the Bergschrund at the base of the face which is a little too active in rock fall in the conditions that we have right now.  So this is an effort to try to find an alternative.  It was a good outing for us.  We were out for about 3 hours and enjoyed working against the altitude and working in the cold wind and seeing things from a little bit different angle.  We came back and spent the afternoon in camp.

Consensus is that conditions are pretty dry and dangerous on the Lhotse face.  So many teams were not having their members or Sherpa go up on the standard route, but others were. Our intention now, not being able to safely climb at the moment without some new snow or some change, is to head down to Base Camp in the morning.  So that is what we are looking to do – up early and heading down.
That’s all for now.

RMI Guide Dave Hahn

South Col as seen from below the Bergschrund.  Photo: Michael Brown Collection Heading up the Western Cwm.  Photo: RMI Collection


RMI Guide Dave Hahn reports from ABC.

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4

Mt. Everest Expedition: Team Continues to Acclimatize at ABC

Posted by: Melissa Arnot, Mark Tucker, Dave Hahn | May 01, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 21,300'

Happy Anniversary to the first American Summit team on Mt. Everest!
That climb happened forty-nine years ago today.  Thanks to all the teams of the past for the valuable insight on how to climb this mountain as safe and smart as possible. 
Dave Hahn and the RMI team remained at Camp 2 (ABC) for another night. All is well up there as they adjust slowly to these extreme altitudes. Conditions on the upper mountain are rough with the jet stream still over top and limited tracks in the upper route for now.  Dave is the master at making the best use of their time up high and when they return to Base Camp I’m sure they will be ready for some rest down here in the thick air of 17,575’.

We are now in the meat of the Mt. Everest climbing season.  There are teams all over the mountain and everybody is at a little different stage in their schedule to get themselves ready for the summit. The cooperation between the teams this year has been fantastic and the resolve and commitment to work together is outstanding.  It is a small community here and everybody pulling together is making for a very enjoyable season.
Lots of work ahead and many more amazing photos to be taken. Hold on - summit time is just around the corner because it’s the month of MAY!

Happy May Day!
RMI Guide Mark Tucker

RMI Camp 2 on the moraine of the Khumbu Glacier.  Photo: Michael Brown Collection


RMI Guide Dave Hahn checks in from ABC (21,300 ft)

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Mt. Everest Expedition: Team readies for next rotation

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot, Mark Tucker | April 28, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 17,575'

Hello,
It is a beautiful day at Everest Base Camp. The climbing team and I did a nice glacier walk out from Base Camp. Just enough to stretch the legs and stop at the internet cafe en-route. There has been lots of packing and loads distributed to the Sherpa team who will help carry gear up to Camp 2 tomorrow. The rest days here at Base Camp have been good for the climbing team members and it looks like tomorrow they will begin their next rotation up high.  We had two members of our Sherpa Team, Lam Babu and Yubaraju, that spent last night at Camp 2.  They reported that everything is ready for the climbing team to inhabit this upper camp.

So, our plan is a 3:30 am breakfast, with requests of eggs, rice porridge, cold cereal and some hot drinks. The team should then be walking out of camp at 4:00 am headed for Camp 2.

We are hoping for good weather and for everyone in the team to feel strong as they climb higher tomorrow.

We will keep you posted.

RMI Guide Mark Tucker

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Mt. Everest Expedition: The Team Completes their First Rotation

Posted by: Melissa Arnot | April 24, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 17,575'

After three nights spent at Camp I, the time to descend came early this morning.  The lively winds helped to motivate us out of camp when the sun hit our tents. Walking down through the icefall after being up for a few days is always interesting, and amazing how fast things have changed. Everyone made their way through the ever-changing river of ice efficiently.  Base Camp always feels so much sweeter after a few nights up high.  We arrived under clear skies and unpacked into the solitude of our own tents; our home away from home. Everyone is doing really well, and after a few days of rest at Base Camp, we will all certainly be feeling even better as we prepare for our second rotation onto the upper slopes of the mountain.

RMI Guide Melissa Arnot

Khumbu Icefall above Football Field The team working their way thru the Icefall

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Mt. Everest Expedition: Dave Hahn Checks in from EBC

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot | April 20, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest
Elevation: 17,575'

We are kicking off our Everest climb for Spring 2012. 

We’ve already been overseas for a little more than three weeks now and at 17,500 ft Everest Base Camp for about a week.  We’ve benefited immensely from the work put into the building of this comfortable and efficient camp by RMI’s Jeff Martin, basecamp manager Mark Tucker and the entire Sherpa staff.  The climbing team feels confident that they’ve now shaken off the “trekker germs” collected during our 11 day push up the Khumbu Valley.  Everyone seems well acclimated and we’ve successfully stretched our legs and lungs on the hills around camp and the approaches to the Khumbu Icefall.  On April 16th, we held a Puja ceremony, seeking the blessing of the gods before putting ourselves in danger on the mountain.  The Puja was deemed a great success and our Sherpa team has consequently completed two missions through the Icefall, going as far as the site which will become our Advanced Base Camp (or Camp II) at a little over 21,000 ft.  Reaching that camp will be one of the goals of our climbing team in these next few days, but we don’t intend to sleep that high just yet.  First things first… if all goes well, we want to get an early start tomorrow morning, say around 5 AM, and then to climb through the Icefall to spend three nights at Camp I (just under 20,000 ft in the Western Cwm).  Our Sherpa team tells us they are satisfied with the present state of the ever-changing Icefall Route.  As usual, we’ll need to climb steep glacial ice, cross ladder bridges over deep crevasses, pass efficiently under avalanche threats and generally keep moving well when the going gets tough.  We figure that this first push should take us around 4 to 4.5 hours.  The climbers have spent most of today sorting gear, packing food and getting packs neat and orderly.  We even showered and put on semi-fresh clothing.  Now we’ll launch our first “rotation” on the mountain toward an eventual summit push.  Each rotation should take us higher on the hill, encountering different challenges and hazards… but also progressively bigger and more spectacular views of the world.  Descending back down to basecamp for smart rest and recuperation between rotations will take on added importance as we get farther along with the game.

It is a big season on Mount Everest with perhaps 40 other teams encamped around us at the base of the mountain.  We’ve each been happy to bump into friends and fellow climbing guides around camp and plans are being laid for communal meals and gaming sessions to fill the downtime.  The weather has been “normal” enough with each day starting cold and sparkling clear, but then clouding up by noon and dropping a little snow by late afternoon or early evening.  Our views of Everest’s summit pyramid have revealed a dry and increasingly rocky profile to the upper mountain.  Either the winter didn’t produce significant volumes of snow up high, or -as is more likely- the jet stream winds have been working overtime to scour the peak.

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn

Prayer flags hang below the summit of Pumori.  As seen from the summit of Kala Patar.  Photo: Jeff Martin RMI Tents at Everest Base Camp 2012.  Photo: Jeff Martin

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Mt. Everest Expedition: Hahn & Arnot Prepare

Posted by: Dave Hahn, Melissa Arnot | April 18, 2012
Categories: *Expedition Dispatches *Everest

RMI Guides Dave Hahn and Melissa Arnot reached Everest Base Camp a few days ago and the expedition is underway! Keep an eye on the RMI Blog over the coming weeks for updates on their climb. In the meantime, check out this video from Outside Magazine where Dave describes his preparation for climbing Mt. Everest.

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