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  Cho Oyo Team Acclimatizes

8 September 2013

Today, each of us separated our equipment into two duffels: things that we will not need until Advanced Base Camp in one duffel and things that we may want before then into another duffel. Tomorrow we will be going to Intermediate Camp and staying there a couple days before going to Advanced Base Camp.

After, we sorted gear. Most of us went on a stroll and hiked up a "hill" to the south-west of camp. Half the group decided that walking to 5200m / 17,000 feet was good acclimatizing and returned back to Chinese Base Camp.

Three team members decided they wanted to go to the top, so they continued their adventure up the slope to the top at 5400m / 17,700 feet. The three adventurous members imagined an easy hike up to the top of the hill, but ended up scrambling on rocks and loose scree. However, we finally reached the top and had excellent views of Cho Oyu, the surrounding mountains and the mysteriously-coloured Tibetan plains. We could see almost the whole walking route along the Gyabrag glacier moraine to the intermediate camp and the advanced base camp. We met members of another expedition on the top and began running down the hill together.

Then everyone returned to Chinese Base Camp to have an excellent lunch.

This afternoon many of us are going to relax a little, maybe journal about the amazing time we are having in the dining tent, a tent specially set up for the team members to eat in, charge batteries, and chill.

The whole team is acclimatizing very well, with no one suffering from headaches or any other symptom of altitude sickness. Caution continues to be our motto though and we will continue to ascend to higher camps in a very relaxed pace.

 

7 September 2013

We woke early and had breakfast at 8am, then we started our journey to Cho Oyu base camp a little earlier than normal since the vehicles that we were using were needed to bring personnel from Cho Oyu base camp for medical purposes.
We had another wonderful day, very beautiful and very sunny, hopefully a good omen from the turquoise goddess for our future expedition ahead. As we set off on our short journey of between 45 minutes to 1 hour on a nice road for a base camp access, we could see Cho Oyu imposing as it was is in the distance, very clear and very beautiful, standing so excitingly close, almost as though we could climb there today.

After many photographs on our way to base camp, and passing a few motorcycles driven by local Tibetan people, we arrived at Chinese base camp at an altitude of 4900 metres / 16,000 feet, full of anticipation and excitement.

We duly proceeded to unload our backpacks and assist where possible with the setting up of our camp, (home for the next 2 days). The shower room, and the dinning and cooking areas had already been completed by our wonderful Sherpa's, about whom we cannot say too much, these Sherpa's are so dedicated and friendly that maybe without them none of this could be possible.

We then took our large bags and unpacked these in our tents and familiarized ourselves with our new homes.
After setting up camp, we had a very nourishing meal, again prepared by our skillful cooks. We then wondered around our new surroundings and made some new friends, the Chinese team being particularly hospitable. After a few beers and some climbing stories we departed, warmed by the new friendships that we had made.

All of our day today was purely based upon acclimatization, since we had moved from an altitude of 4300 meters / 14,000 feet to a new altitude of 4900 meters / 16,000 feet. Not much you may say but believe me, it takes time to adjust to these new heights. We therefore only did a very short hike in the direction of advanced base camp to 5200 meters / 17,000 feet to stimulate acclimatization.

Slowly but surely we are moving gradually higher in a safe fashion, eating well, sleeping well and getting used to these new soaring heights.

We all had dinner together once more and shared stories of the trip thus far and also of the adventures still to come.
 

 

 

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