I left on Sunday March 20th, for
Kathmandu. My departure is roughly a week in advance of the rest of the team
members. Many details must be sorted out before the team arrives in Nepal.
I've got nearly 1000lbs of luggage, which is comprised of tents, food,
climbing hardware, ropes, communications equipment, personal items, COFFEE,
etc... The Tibetan Mountaineering Association (TMA) recently took full
responsibility for fixing the ropes on the entire route, all the way to the
summit! Originally, I planned to bring ~1200 meters of rope on the expedition,
but due to the recent changes in mountain logistics I've decided to only bring
400 meters of kermantal rope. The ropes will be used for replacing established
fixed lines if need be, anchoring tents at the high camps, climbing and rescue
We have decided to move the
arrival dates up a few days due to recent changes in the political environment
in Nepal. The rest of the team is now scheduled to arrive in Kathmandu on
March 27th, and we'll begin our drive to the border on the 29th.
I would also like to introduce
our newest member of the expedition! Marne Schwartz of Seattle Washington USA
will be trekking with our team to ABC. Marne is a very close friend of Al
Baal, one of our fearless Everest climbers, and will bring a gentle level of
calmness to the team. Marne will also be helping me organize some of the team
gear once we arrive in base camp. Welcome aboard Marne!
Wish our team members luck as we
begin our great adventure. The next dispatch will be from the mysterious land
From the USA: Brook Alongi
Editorial Note: Several climbers have been lobbying the TMA or CMA to take
over fixing of the ropes on the north side. We have NOT confirmed Brook's news
yes, but we have no reason to believe it is not true. A big and major change
About Brook: With 15 years
extensive experience in all aspects of climbing and backcountry travel, Brook
has what it takes to provide you with a safe and enjoyable adventure.
He's very comfortable on all types of technical terrain, be it an ice climb
in BC, the side of El Capitan, or negotiating the infamous Canaleta on
Aconcagua. He has climbed in the US, Canada, Alaska, Mexico, South America
and Asia. This year he climbed Cho Oyu's Northwest face without
oxygen. He'll attempt Mt Everest's Northridge in the Spring of 2005 and Cho Oyu
again in the fall.
Brook strives to make your
experience with Ogawa Mountain Adventures an enjoyable and safe one.
Helping people achieve their goals and fulfill their dreams is important,
but not nearly as important as coming home safely, every time. To
Brook, client safety is top priority, no questions.
His leadership abilities and
charming wit bring smiles and increase important team bonds, even
when times are tough. Brook is a nationally
registered EMT as well as a certified Wilderness-EMT.
He extends his passion of
helping people by frequently participating in mountain rescue missions
throughout the Cascades in the US. By this, he hopes to increase his promise
to you that Ogawa Mountain Adventures is here to provide you with a margin
of safety that many expedition companies can't
Brook I spent 5 years in the US
Navy after high school. 4 of them were spent in Japan where his ship(s) were
home ported. Climbing the mountains of Japan was spectacular and the
winter ice climbing even better. He climbed as often as he could find partners. If
his sailor buddies where to hung over to go out, "I'd just pack my Ice
tools and go alone. Usually, a group of Japanese climbers would ask me to join
them on the ice. They could practice their English and I could lead a
few routes. Talk about killing two birds with one stone! During my
enlistment I sailed on two full length Persian Gulf cruises. I didn't like what
we were doing there and both times my ships pulled out for the gulf, it
killed my plans to climb in Alaska and Nepal. They offered me a very large
sum of money (enough to climb Everest in fact) to re-enlist, but my heart
was in the mountains, so I followed it and came home." Brook
"I honestly had no plans to
climb Everest this year. The spark came about when I was on the summit of
Cho Oyu and the North Ridge of Everest was literally in my face. It was
nothing more than a spectacular view at the time. However, on my way
down to Cho Oyu base camp I began to think about what it would be like to do
the route that I had just scene. I immediately began making preparations the
day I returned to Kathmandu. Within 2 months I had assembled 5 clients for
a North Ridge expedition. This is how most climbers get their
inspiration for the next climb; this is just on a much bigger scale. Most climbers
open their guide book(s) and think, "which line looks like my next
adventure. Ah, there it is..."
* Probar is supplying all
energy bars for the expedition.
* Montrail has helped supply
me with shoes for training.
* Nike Vision is supplying my
sunglasses for training, triathlon racing and climbing.
* Nike Timing has helped
supply me with a Lance 4 altimeter.
* Petzl has given me one of
only two prototype axes (Cosmi'tec) for use on the expedition. (Very
innovative and ultra light design, I think it should be standard on this type of
* Feathered Friends of
Seattle, WA has helped supply custom jackets and sleeping bags.
* Second Ascent of Seattle,
WA deserves honorable mention for going above beyond the levels of standard
customer service as a climbing equipment retailer. Their high level
of attention has helped with the gear aspect of logistics for this Everest
* Ogawa Mountain Adventures is providing logistics to the summit.
Deuter, who has supplied my pack. A Guide 45+
Sport Everest Boot has made some minor changes by adding
more Kevlar. USES Expeditions / High
altitude / Mountaineering in extremely cold conditions / Isothermal to
-75°F Gore-Tex® Top dry / Evazote Reinforcements with aramid threads.
Avg. Weight: 5 lbs 13 oz Sizes: 5 - 14 DESCRIPTION Boot with semi-rigid
shell and built-in Gore-Tex® gaiter reinforced by aramid threads, and
removable inner slipper Automatic crampon attachment Non-compressive
fastening Double zip, so easier to put on Microcellular midsole to
increase insulation Removable inner slipper in aluminized alveolate
Fiberglass and carbon footbed Cordura + Evazote upper Elasticated
Expedition footwear for
mountaineering in conditions of extreme cold. NOTE US
SIZES LISTED. See more here.
weather, high altitude double boot for extreme conditions The Olympus
Mons is the perfect choice for 8000-meter peaks. This super lightweight
double boot has a PE thermal insulating inner boot that is coupled with
a thermo-reflective outer boot with an integrated gaiter. We used a
super insulating lightweight PE outsole to keep the weight down and the
TPU midsole is excellent for crampon compatibility and stability on
steep terrain. WEIGHT: 39.86 oz • 1130 g LAST: Olympus Mons
CONSTRUCTION: Inner: Slip lasted Outer: Board Lasted OUTER BOOT: Cordura®
upper lined with dual-density PE micro-cellular thermal insulating
closed cell foam and thermo-reflective aluminium facing/ Insulated
removable footbed/ Vibram® rubber rand
See more here.