Everest and Himalya wrap-up: Everest BC, election day in KTM, Babanov & more
(MountEverest.net) … we are wrapping up both Everest and other Himalaya. There’s transportation curfew in Nepal, climbers have arrived Everest and Dhaulagiri BC, and plenty of action is also reported on other peaks.
David Tait: no flights on election day
“I had literally one foot in the chopper, when the Nepalese Home Ministry shut down all domestic helicopter flights,” reports David Tait, “and commandeered all aircraft for ‘election’ use.
Trekking to Everest south side with Brice’s team, David is currently stuck in Namche due some urgent (and expensive) tooth work he had to have done. “Today, the 10th, is election day in Nepal. Literally EVERYTHING is shut. Only international flights are still operating – it’s effectively a countrywide curfew to curtail almost certain unrest. However, I’m told that it’s certain that I will fly tomorrow. So, despite everything, I’m still on schedule to arrive at BC on or around the 13th. I plan to wear “the most expensive tooth ever” around my neck in future.” Go to David’s site below for the full story.
Politics, curfews – it’s easy to forget altitude as a main ingredient on Everest climbers’ plate right now.
Lee Farmer arrived in Gorak Shep at 5,140 metres, feeling like his throat’s been cut. However his eyes are better, thanks to eye drops and keeping his glacier glasses on all the time. Next it was off to BC, with a banging headache.
“I was amazed to see the amount of traffic on the narrow path,” Lee reports. Porters and yak trains going to and coming from EBC. One yak train returning from EBC must have had thirty or forty animals in it.”
In BC stands a collection of a hundred or so tents now, Lee reports. Rock and ice crash down from the surrounding mountains, and the ice fall hasn’t been opened up yet. April 13 is an estimate for that.
The whole Team is in Base Camp now, reports IMG, and the members had their Puja today. The Icefall Sherpas have been making good progress, and IMG expect the Icefall route to be finished in the next few days.
Andrew Brash (Lincoln Hall rescuer)
Also Andrew and his team mates have arrived in Everest BC – on the south side this time. “It was an extremely interesting day for me, having the privilege to see and walk through one of the truly magnificent places on earth,” Andrew reported about the hike up. “I won’t make much comment on the Khumbu Icefall quite yet, but it is clearly a formidable obstacle.”
“I think the slow walk up here is much gentler on the body and brain than the rapid and jarring drive to the Tibetan side,” Andrew also reports. “I had lots of time to think today, about what happened in 2006 (I could even see the last bit of the North Ridge for a moment), about the political events that have brought me and others here, and about home and what I am putting people through back there. However, there were some moments today where I did feel truly happy and excited to be here. The mountains here have to be seen in person to be truly appreciated.”
Lina has met with Miss Hawley and reported everything was to be closed in KTM today on election day. The female climber however expects to leave for Lukla on the 11th. Meanwhile Lina hangs out in the city with fellow climbers; she met with both Xavis (one of whom will attempt Everest without oxygen) last night.
Katja Staartjes team originally planned to go to Shisha Pangma, but has rerouted for Manaslu due to the Tibet situation. “We acclimatized in the Khumbu region for the last two weeks and are back in Kathmandu now,” reports mountain photographer and mountain rescuer Menno Boermans. “The 12th we will leave for the mountain!”
Team members are: Katja Staartjes, Henk Wesselius, Niels van Veen, Miriam Knepper, and Menno Boermans (links below). The team and two Sherpas will climb the normal route.
Valery and Nikolay headed for their third acclimatization push yesterday, a climb up to 7200-7500 m planned to take about 3-4 days.
On April 8 a helicopter finally delivered the Spanish team to the mountain (normal route). The Al Filo team met up with the two west face guys in BC. “It was very generous of the Spanish team to let Valery use their lap top, so he was able to send me new photos,” reports Olga Babanova.
Juanito Oiarzabal and his Basque team are currently acclimatizing up the Khumbu valley, since the cols leading to Makalu BC are allegedly blocked with loads of fresh snow. The team will walk up to the summit of Gokio Peak today. On April 16th they hope to be back in Lukla and ready to catch a chopper which will lead them to Makalu´s Hillay BC. Rope-fixing works on the mountain are due to start by April 20th.
RussianClimb reports that Denis Urubko’s team has left Almaty for Nepal. Their first goal is Makalu, normal route. Expedition members are Denis, Svetlana Sharipova (climbed Dhaulagiri in 2007), Eugeny Shutov (climbed Dhaulagiri in 2007 and was a member of Makalu winter attempt in 2008) and Boris Dedeshko (who on March 27- 28 managed the highest grade technical climb in Kyrgyzstan with Denis; Korona 5th bastion, 6 Russian grade.) If Makalu goes well, Denis plans a speed attempt on Cho Oyu by end of May (China permitting).
Annapurna; about Ama Dablam in spring
Piotr Pustelnik reports from Lukla that the climbers will fly back to Kathmandu for a short break before Annapurna.
As for the recent acclimatization climb on Ama Dablam, Piotr reports the peak is a different story in spring, there’s hardly any snow, and whatever snow there is, it’s frozen solid.”
“What surprised me as well was how brittle the rocks were: I fell off a couple of times when the stones simply slipped away from under my feet. And then at some point during the final descent my heart sank when I dislodged a big boulder that quietly tumbled down the mountain…”
“Secondly, the mountain is technically very challenging and, in some places on the ridge, even fixed ropes wouldn’t help if one were to make a mistake of some sort. Hence I’m rather surprised that there’re so few accidents there. Still, the climbing was great and we had very good time but I’m rather astonished that many commercial trekking companies offer Ama Dablam to potential clients as it’s not an easy mountain.”
Links to teams currently dispatching from Everest and Himalaya:
Irish Everest/Graham and Ian
Klimb for kids/Tim Warren
No guts know glory/Rob Hill
Nepalese 77 year old
Eco Everest/Dawa Sherpa
Lincoln Hall rescuers Andrew Brash, Myles Osborne and Dan Mazur
Miura senior (Japanese)
Rodrigo Raineri (Vitor Negrete’s mate) and Eduardo Keppke (no 02)
Latvia:Atis Plakans (leader), Liga Plakane, and Kaspars Klapkalns
Gnaro’s Share Everest
Keck at www.alpinist.at
Dhaulagiri west face Babanov/Kofanov
Radek Jaros and Zdenek Hruby
Kinga and Kasia
Carlos Pauner, Javier Perez and Marta Alexandre
Polish Dhaula with Artur Hajzer and Ryszard Pawlowski
oryginal post by : – http://www.everstexpedition.eu/
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Filed under: Climbers, Expedition, Travel Tagged: | Ama Dablam, Annapurna West Face, Broad Peak, Climbers, Dhaulagiri, Everest, Expedition, Himalayan Trilogy, Himalayas, Kathmandu, Lukla, Makalu, Manaslu, Nepal, Phakging, Piotr Morawski, Piotr Pustelnik, Shisha Pangma, Travel