Location: Everest Base Camp
Local Time: 5:30pm, 15th May
Weather: Mainly fine, 10C
Hi everyone, it's Fiona here.
While on another day of "active rest", we've been looking at the weather and
believe that the forecast is good enough for us to head up on Wednesday.
Getting to the Starting Line
After breakfast today, we checked the new weather forecast which had come in
late last night. While not greatly changed, the prediction for fairly low
winds seems to have been extended, with no real end in sight yet. The
Jet-Stream, which seems to determine most of the winds, is still far away to
our North - and we don't want to risk waiting too long as it is bound to come
close at some stage. We discussed this at length with one of the coaches here
(who has climbed Everest 6 times previously), and weighing it all up, we've
pretty much decided that the current weather pattern looks at least good
enough for us to head up to Camp 2. From here, if the forecast is still good,
we can continue onwards towards the summit, but if there is a change, we can
either wait for a few days at C2, or return down to Base Camp. At least we'll
be at the starting blocks so to speak.
In the best case, if all goes
perfectly to plan, we'll move to C2 on the 17th, rest on the 18th, move to C3
on the 19th, move to C4 on the 20th and then start for the summit later that
night (around 10pm). This would make our possible summit date as the 21st. Of
course, there is a lot that can happen between now and then though!
We'll delay making a final
decision about leaving on Wednesday until we see tomorrow's forecast, and
speaking to our Sherpas - who should be returning from visiting with their
families sometime tomorrow.
With our departure for the summit now (possibly) drawing close, we started to
get some things organised. I washed a few more clothes (the thermal underwear
I was wearing yesterday) and finished drying yesterday's wash.
We then started gathering up
the food we will need for Camps 3 and 4. We're taking enough food so that we
can spend 2 nights at Camp 4 should the need arise to wait out weather. For
dinner, we use meal sachets that you heat by simply submerging the packet in
boiling water. We then eat straight out of the package - saving the need to
wash up any pots.
A lot of the food we're
taking is snacks though - biscuits, muesli bars, cheese slices, jubes, fruit
bars and of course, chocolate (although it will probably be too cold to eat
Paul has also been testing
the Hotronics foot warmers - they seem to be a bit flakey down here. When we
climb from Camp 3 to Camp 4, we plan to test these, as well as the combination
of clothes we're planning to wear for the summit.
Mary is having a lesson in
how to update as when we're high up, we'll radio in our position and hopefully
she'll be able to keep you guys informed.
Again, that's all for today.
Hope everyone out there is well, Fiona