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  SummitClimb Mt. Everest 2006 Tibet: Wonder what Boardman and Tasker would think of it all

Looking down at camp 1 on the North Col. Photo Andrew Brash

Update Dispatch 5 May, 2006 

Dear EverestNews.com,

A big hello from the shanty town that is Chinese Base Camp. A fine shanty it is however, and after 5 sleepless, clammy, ramen-noodle eating, skin-crawling, toilet-paper stormed nights on the North Col, we are luxuriating in the splendour of lawn chairs, metal tables and even the residual filth of the tin-doored dining shack here in base camp. After 10 days up and above this place, most of us are attempting to rectify our personal hygene, although for some of us this is simply a situation beyond hope. Several unSuspecting Tibetan girls were recruited to assist us with our desperate laundry dilemna. I have to admit to feeling a slight amount of guilt at the particulars I left with those poor girls...unfortunately the price of a load of laundry has gone up dramatically as a result...but back to that mountain sitting behind us - we feel relatively positive about our state of acclimatization after spending so many nights at 7000m, and I find it amazing to think that our next trip up will be to attempt to go to the top.


While at the North Col most of us were able to climb to close to 7500m, with the 2 Swedes reaching 7700m. No team has camp 2 ready, that ferocious wind not allowing tents to go up quite yet. Now we plan an extended break down low, and won't return up high until mid-May.


Today Dan and I toured base camp. From our modest and simple camp (Dan's words, not mine) we first visited the Chinese expedition's camp, with their multiple SUVs in the 'parking lot', television crew and star climbing team. Apparently they are preparing for some kind of Olympic spectacular for 2008. Dan and I were escorted into the 'visitors' tent, not actually meeting any

of the climbers.


Deciding to move on, we wandered through several deserted camps, finally entering the Russian camp. Alex were extremely hospitable and proudly toured us through their BC complex. After a quick look at the entertainment tent that included televisions and about 10 laptops online, we were treated to some boxed Australian wine in the dinning tent and had our picture taken by a certain Polish reporter. Dan amazed us all with his Russian and he and Alex realized they had met in the early 90s in Kathmandu. Finally, Alex walked us past the sauna/bath tent, without doubt an ingeneous but smelly apparatus and we walked back toward our humble camp shaking our heads.


Before going 'home' however, we made a brief stop at memorial hill and stopped at the stone marker for Peter Boardman and Joe Tasker, two of my most revered climbing heroes who died on Everest in 1982. They had climbed on Everest during a time when they would have had the mountain to themselves. They were attempting a new route with a tiny team without oxygen and disappeared high on their route... Real climbers...


Looking out across the base camp flats and the hundreds of tents with their high tech comforts, I couldn't help but wonder what Boardman and Tasker would think of it all. After a few moments we left them behind and headed back to camp.


All best and love to Jen and Anna and all, Andrew Brash 





Foreign Climbers:


Mr. JOHN BAGNULO, climbing member, New Vineyard, Maine;

Mr. ANDREW BRASH, climbing member, Calgary, Canada;

Mr. PHIL CRAMPTON. expedition manager, Nottingham, England, and Texas;

Mr. HECTOR GARCIA, climbing member, Cali, Columbia, and London, England;

Mr. DENO HEWSON, climbing member, New Zealand and Japan;

Mr. MARTIN LETZTER, climbing member; Taby, Sweden;

Mr. DAN MAZUR, Everest leader, Bristol, England, and Seattle, Washington;

Mr. JUAN PABLO MILANA, climbing member, San Juan, Argentina;

Mr. MYLES OSBORNE, climbing member, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Southampton, England;

Mr. COLIN PACEY, climbing member, Sydney, Australia;

Mr. KEN STALTER, climbing member, Franklin, New York;

Mr. OLOF SUNDSTROM, climbing member, Stockholm, Sweden;

Mr. MON TINDALE, climbing member, Workington, Cumbria, England

Mr. NEIL WELLS, climbing member, Maidenhead, Berkshire, England;

Mr. BILL YEO, climbing member, Durham, Maine;


Climbing Staff:


Mr. ADEN, climber, Tibet;

Mr. DEECHEN NARJUP, climber, Pasum Zom, Tibet;

Mr. LORCHUN, climber, Tibet;

Mr. NORBU ZHANDU, climbing leader, Tibet;

Mr. DAWA SHERPA, climbing sherpa, Kari Khola, Nepal;

Mr. JANGBU SHERPA, climbing leader, Okhaldunga, Nepal;

Mr. YANDAN, climber, Tibet;



Cooking Staff:


Mr. CHAMPA, assistant cook, Tibet;

Mr. DANZIG, assistant cook, Tibet;

Mr. GORU, assistant cook, Tibet;

Mr. DORJE LAMA, assistant cook, Nepal:

Mr. KIPA SHERPA, chief cook, Nepal.


Thanks again for all of your help in telling the story of Himalayan



-Yours Sincerely, from all of us at SummitClimb.com



Background: Everest and K2 summiter Dan Mazur leads the SummitClimb 2006 Everest Expedition on the Tibet side of the Mountain...

Introduction: Climb Everest (8,848 Metres) by Dan Mazur

Everest is perhaps the most coveted mountain in the world. The north (Tibetan) side is the least expensive way to climb it, and the dates we have chosen feature the best weather of the year. Our proposed schedule allows for two possible summit attempts and two full descents to the Chinese basecamp at 5200 metres. Our style of climbing is cautious and careful, with excellent leadership, organization, Sherpa climbers, cooks and waiters, tasty food, the best equipment, two full kitchens and basecamp plus advanced basecamp, 6 camps on the mountain, 1000s of metres of fixed line, hundreds of rock ice and snow anchors, top-quality high altitude tents and high altitude stoves, expedition mix gas, and full safety equipment: medical oxygen, gamow bag, and extensive medical kit.

This expedition to Everest maximizes many years of accumulated wisdom of the high Himalaya, a strong record of reaching the top of 8,000ers: Everest, K2, Kangchenjunga, Lhotse, Makalu, Cho-Oyu, Shishapangma, and many other 8,000 metre summits, in addition to more than 25 Himalayan expeditions, in all safety, along with an intimate knowledge of the Tibetan and Chinese officials who regulate the permit system. This is our 14th expedition to Tibet since 1986, and we know all of the bureaucratic officials, liason officers, yak drivers, and hoteliers/restaurateurs personally.


The monkey temple makes a nice training walk in Kathmandu (. Try to go at dawn when the pollution is not so bad. A local woman leaving an offering at a temple (Ryan Waters).

Detailed Description

The trip begins in the ancient and colorful city of Kathmandu (you could also start in Beijing). You stay in a comfortable, simple, clean, hot-water hotel, at minimal cost (single rooms at: $15, £9.50, €14) (double rooms at $20, £13, €19) and sample some of the very reasonably-priced tasty Nepalese, Tibetan and Western-Style cuisine, available at the hundreds of local restaurants.  During your free days in Kathmandu, while your Chinese visa is being processed, you shall finalize arrangements, purchase and hire the bits of equipment you might be missing at the hundreds of mountain-climbing and trekking equipment shops in the neighborhood (with low prices, as well), and take time out for trinket hunting, with suggested visits to explore the 17th century splendors of the Monkey Temple, the Durbar Square and old Kings Palace, as well as the ancient cities of Patan, and Bakhtapur. We also have several member and training sessions during these days, where our leaders spend time with you reviewing climbing techniques and equipment, going over medical and safety procedures, etcetera. If you are concerned about the altitude and have purchased Diamox (acetylzolamide), which is inexpensively available with no doctor's prescription in Kathmandu, this might be the time to begin taking it.

After the finalization of your Chinese visa, we set out very early in a bus for the 4 hour drive to the last Nepal town of Kodari at 1,770 meters. We clear Nepalese customs and immigration, then hire local porters and vehicles to carry your bags across the Bota Kosi River on the Friendship Bridge, to Zhangmu, the gateway town in Tibet.

On the Friendship Bridge, border Crossing between Nepal and Tibet (Bruce Manning).

Upon entering Tibet, the clocks immediately go forward by 2 ¼ hours.  Our secondary government liason officer will meet us in Zhangmu. After clearing Tibetan customs and immigration, a Chinese bus takes us up the windy road through the rolling hills to Nyalam town at 3,750 meters, and a basic "hotel".  The smaller towns in Tibet are generally simple and rustic places, and this one is no exception.  The topography here is quite interesting in that we are perched in the transitional zone where the Tibetan plateau rams into the Himalaya, then drops into the forested valleys and jungles of Nepal, and finally out into the Gangetic plain of the Terai and India. We stay over one extra night in Nyalam, to help adjust to the altitude, and during our "rest-day" in Nyalam, we take advantage of the interesting surroundings to walk to the top of local hills and savor the first glimpses of the Himalayan Giants.


Bouldering in Nyalam on our rest day (Felix Berg). On the road to Tingri, Himalayan Giants in the background (DL Mazur). Our sturdy Tibetan trucks carry the equipment, here being loaded by our Sherpas (Tim Spear).

In the morning we continue our bus-ascent into the Tibetan plateau, to the town of Tingri at 4,342 meters.  There are superb views of Shishapangma, Cho-Oyu, and Everest as we drive into Tingri. The town itself is a very basic one-street hamlet surrounded by the tents of nomadic Tibetans. About ½ of all ethnic Tibetans living in Tibet are nomadic or semi-nomadic. Our extremely rustic little hotel has an adequate restaurant, and it will be interesting to see if the high altitude has quelled our appetites for tasty fresh food. There are the ruins of an old fortress on a rise above town, and from here we can see the finest views of Everest, Lhotse, Cho-Oyu, and Shishapangma.

A stop along the road near Tingri. There is a simply developed hot springs here. Only the very brave are able to tempt fate by entering the dirty water (Bruce Manning).

The following morning, after what for many is a relatively sleep-free night, we drive the 70 kilometers to Everest base camp at around 5,200 meters.  The drive follows a dirt road along the Rongbuk Valley and has spectacular views of the Himalaya.  Chinese base camp is located just near the medieval and active Rongbuk Monastery.

We will spend another day resting, acclimatising, and organizing equipment into Yak loads at Chinese base.


Preparing our yak loads at Chinese basecamp (Bruce Manning). Blue mountain sheep in the cliffs above basecamp (Felix Berg).

We then spend two days moving up to the "interim camp", which is located at 5800 metres and halfway to the "advanced basecamp (ABC)". 


Yak train heading up to interim camp (Bruce Manning). Interim Camp at 5800 metres, where we acclimate for a day or two before heading up to ABC (Tim Spear).

Next, we spend two days working our way up to ABC. 6,400 meters, ABC must be the highest  basecamp in the world.  It is located on a rocky moraine next to the Rongbuk Glacier.


Franck walking up the Rongbuk to ABC (Tim Spear). Our comfortable ABC at 6400 metres, A view of the mountain at sunset from ABC (Ryan Waters).

Upon reaching ABC, we will take another rest and acclimatization day, this time going over our equipment, safety procedures, climbing techniques, cooking and camping methods, and working to form ourselves into a more cohesive team.

After resting and completing our training, we will begin our climb of Everest.


Climbers approaching the North Col at 6800 metres. Lines are fixed here for safety. Our tents at the North Col at 7000 metres, also known as camp 1. Climbers Walking up to the 7500 metre camp, also known as camp 2. You can see the tents in the North Col in the background (Ryan Waters). At the 7500 metre camp (Ken Stalter).

On the way up to camp 3 at 8300 metres, which lies up and to the right in the photo (Ryan Waters). Camp 3. Andre Bredenkamp and Chris Drummond in Camp 3 .

Distant view of the second step at 8500 metres, ladders on right . On the second step at 8500 metres. We fixed 300 metres of rope here. Looking at the summit from 8400 metres. Climbing the second step. (Ryan Waters).


 The third and final step onto the summit. Ryan on the Summit. (Ryan Waters).  A sunburned Felix back in ABC after summitting.

Through the following weeks, we will climb up and down the mountain, according to the schedule suggested below, exploring the route, establishing camps, and building our acclimatization and strength levels. We will also descend to the Chinese basecamp several times, in order to rest well. Following the proposed itinerary below should give us the best chance to ascend in safety and maximize our opportunity to reach the summit during the "weather windows" which open in May.


1. 4 April, Arrive Kathmandu (1,300 meters).
2. 5 April In Kathmandu - Bring Passport to Chinese Embassy, for Visa. Logistics, training, purchasing, packing, training, visit temples, city tour, shopping.  Hotel and meals at members minimal cost.
3. 6 April In Kathmandu - while visa is being processed, logistics, training purchasing, packing, training, visit temples, city tour, shopping.  Hotel.
4. 7 April In Kathmandu - Pick up passport from Chinese Embassy. Logistics, training, purchasing, packing, training, visit temples, city tour, shopping.  Hotel. 
5. 8 April Bus to Tibet; drive to Nyalam (3,750 meters).  Hotel and meals at organizer's expense.
6. 9 April Rest in Nyalam (3,750 meters).  Walk around the local hills. Hotel.
7. 10 April Bus to Tingri (4,342 meters).  Hotel.
8. 11 April Rest in Tingri.
9. 12 April Drive to Chinese Basecamp (5200meters).  Camp.
10. 13 April Rest in Chinese base. Organize equipment and supplies. Camp.
11. 14 April Walk gently in the hills surrounding Chinese base.
12. 15 April Rest in Chinese base. Organize equipment and supplies. Camp.
13. 16 April Walk with the yaks halfway to advanced base to interim camp (5,800meters). Camp.
14. 17 April Rest in interim camp.
15. 18 April Rest in interim camp.
16. 19 April Walk with the yaks to advanced base (ABC) at 6400 metres. Camp.
17. 20 April Rest in Advanced base. Extensive training. Organize supplies.
18. 21 April Rest in Advanced base. Extensive training. Organize supplies.
19. 22 April Walk to Camp 1 North Col (7000m). Return to ABC.
20. 23 April Rest in ABC.
21. 24 April Walk to Camp 1. Sleep there.
22. 25 April Explore route to Camp 2 (7500m), return to ABC.
23. 26 April Walk back down to Chinese base.
24. 27 April Rest in Chinese base.
25. 28 April Rest in Chinese base.
26. 29 April Rest in Chinese base.
27. 30 April Walk up to interim camp.
28. 1 May Walk up to ABC.
29. 2 May Walk to Camp 1, sleep there.
30. 3 May Walk to Camp 2, sleep there.
31. 4 May Explore route to Camp 3 (8300 metres), return to camp 2, sleep there.
32. 5 May Walk Down to ABC.
33. 6 May Walk back down to Chinese base.
34. 7 May Rest in Chinese base.
35. 8 May Rest in Chinese base.
36. 9 May Rest in Chinese base.
37. 10 May Walk up to interim camp.
38. 11 May Walk up to ABC.
39. 12 May Walk to Camp 1. Sleep there.
40. 13 May Walk to Camp 2, sleep there.
41. 14 May Walk to Camp 3, sleep there.
42. 15 May Attempt summit if conditions allow.
43. 16 May Attempt summit if conditions allow.
44. 17 May Descend to ABC.
45. 18 May Walk back down to Chinese base.
46. 19 May Rest in Chinese base.
47. 20 May Rest in Chinese base.
48. 21 May Rest in Chinese base.
49. 22 May Walk up to interim camp.
50. 23 May Walk back up to ABC.
51. 24 May Walk to Camp 1. Sleep there.
52. 25 May Walk to Camp 2, sleep there.
53. 26 May Walk to Camp 3, sleep there.
54. 27 May Attempt summit if conditions allow.
55. 28 May Attempt summit if conditions allow.
56. 29 May Descend to Camp 1.
57. 30 May Packing in camp 1, descend to ABC.
58. 31 May Packing in ABC.
59. 1 June Yaks transport equipment, supplies and rubbish to Chinese base. Members walk down.
60. 2 June Packing in Chinese base.
61. 3 June Drive to Tingri.   Hotel and meals at organizers expense.
62. 4 June Drive to Kathmandu.   Hotel and meals at members expense.
63. 5 June In Kathmandu.  Final packing, summit celebration, saying goodbye to new friends.
64. 6 June Fly home. Thank you for joining our Mount Everest Expedition




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Expedition footwear for mountaineering in conditions of extreme cold.  NOTE US SIZES LISTED. See more here.

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