Location: Camp 2
Local Time: 17:30, April 29
Weather: Warm & clear, -13C in tent overnight, 3C now
Hi Paul here,
Today we hiked over to the base of the Lhotse face. It was absolutely amazing – really steep, with hard blue glacial ice glistening in the sun. The base of the Lhotse face is at an altitude of 6,650m, and we covered this from C2 in a little under one and a half hours. Although it really got us breathing hard, we can already feel an improvement operating at this altitude since we arrived at camp 2.
It was good see that Mary was able to post a message yesterday that she is in Namche Baazar. The climb up to Namche is long and steep, but the good thing is that we think it’s the hardest part about getting to base camp.
Our current plans
We have finished everything we wanted to do on this acclimatisation rotation. Tomorrow we will go back down to base camp, where we will enjoy good food and a long overdue shower. After four days rest we will come back up to camp 1 and then camp 2. After a rest day, we hope to climb half way up the Lhotse face to camp 3, where we will spend a night. The next day we will climb on oxygen up to the Yellow Band, to practise with all the gear and then descend back to camp 2 and base camp. Once we have done this, then we will wait at base camp for a suitable period of good weather to attempt the summit.
My throat, chest and voice are nearly 100%, and I feel much stronger when climbing. Going through the icefall earlier this week was hell for me, as every time I took a deep breath I would cough hard, and I think this is what caused the soreness experienced that night and the next day. I am still using the codeine whenever we are out. Fiona is feeling fine. Things are certainly looking up!
Other IMG movements
Dan arrived at camp 2 today, having spent last night at camp 1. He and JF and a few other people are here waiting for C3 to be ready (route is in, but no IMG tents are up yet). Dennis went down to base camp yesterday. As always, Dennis is looking extremely fit and strong. Jim and Jack went down this morning to base camp.
Thanks again for all your messages of support and encouragement. We usually collect the emails and post the update just before dinner (6pm Nepal time), so we bring the pda into the dining tent and share the messages with everyone. It is a highlight of the day.
Carla – We don’t know when we will summit, but according to our plan we will have finished our camp 3 acclimatisaton rotation & be back in basecamp around May 10, so around May 15 would be the earliest we could start for the summit.
Hi Marie, Its good to hear from you all the way from France.
Hi Tam, Don’t know what bag suck is, but we’ll see if Dennis has any ideas when we see him tomorrow!
James, Passed on your messages to Jim, He loved hearing from you.
Hi Dave, Fi had a good laugh at your message.
Rosemary and Dave, Yes Fiona is using the wee like a bloke device! She is a convert, but I think it’s best if she explains it. The big over-gloves we made out of a sleeping bag will be used on the summit bid only. They are too big and clumsy to use while climbing, but will be good if we have to wait in any queues at bottlenecks (eg. Hillary Step). Some Nak cheese is Ok and tastes like ordinary tasty cheese, its just this one variant that is particularly strong. (It’s just like how not all cow’s cheese smells the same.)
Hi Rach, Kez and Jac, Fiona wishes she could be there with you. Have a good one.
Hi Michelle, Jim’s cough has now been classed by the HRA as Khumbu Cough, so it’s not really bronchial anymore. His voice sounds normal too.
Hi Karlyne, We do have really good sleeping bags that are rated to -30C, so at -13C inside the tent we have to sleep with them unzipped a bit! We won’t be taking our bags above C2, so we will be sleeping in our down suits.
Hi Miranda, Got your SMS as I was writing this. Good to hear from you.
Hi Mike, The winds haven’t been strong up high. In fact Dasona reckons that today and yesterday would have been perfect summit days.
Hopefully coming to you tomorrow from a warm base camp,