9 September 2013
Today our team of 7 members, 3 Sherpas, and 1 Tibetan reached Gyepla at 5350
metres / 17,500 feet. It was a gorgeous walk through rocky river valleys and
turbulent glacier moraines. The winds were calm as the warm sun beamed down on
us through clouds as we walked the 3.5 hours on a jeep track into the short
grass - rocky valley of Gyepla, where a small community of Tibetan teahouses
and western mountaineering tents has sprung up. Our little team was
accompanied by 25 yaks and 1 large noisy Japanese cargo truck. The yaks went
empty, and the roaring truck was bursting with gear and people. Upon arrival
in Gyepla, many kind Sherpas came out to help us set up camp. Such gentlemen!
We dove into the exotic carpet and cushion lined teahouse tent for a
comfortable cup of tea, enjoying a hot drink while perched upon plush sofas
around the warm yak dung stove. When we first arrived here in Gyepla, the
small valley stream was dry as a bone, then in the late afternoon, it turned
into a burbling brook. Finally, as we sat in our team's own dining tent and
enjoyed a delicious evening meal of veggies, pasta, soup, papadum, and mango
slices, with loads of hot drinks, the sun popped out over Cho Oyu, known by
the Tibetans as the "Turquoise Goddess", and the world's sixth highest
mountain was draped in golden light, against a brilliant blue sky backdrop.
Tomorrow we will quest for the next higher camp. Wish us well!
Matti Sunell from Finland writes in:
After sorting our things into two separate bags, one going directly to the
advanced base camp and the other containing equipment we would need in the
interim camp, we packed our backpacks very light and started the walk up the
road towards the interim camp. The big bags would come by truck. The easy road
followed the valley floor near the river, and after about one hour's walk,
started winding up the hills of the glacier moraine. We took it easy, but made
good progress. Near the interim camp the truck carrying the expedition's
equipment and our bags reached us and we were offered a ride, but we decided
to walk the rest couple of kilometres because we felt strong.
The iterim camp's field was packed, as there were many expeditions arriving at
the same time. As usual, the day ended in a comfortable and crowded teahouse.
Juergen Landmann writes:
Heute habe ich einmal die Gelegenheit, meine geistigen Erguesse kundzutun.
Am Abend konnte ich ganz fuer mich allein den Sonnenuntergang auf ueber 5600m
geniesen. Ein einzigartiges Erlebnis, welches ich sehr gern mit meiner Frau
und meinen Kindern geteilt haette. Bloed war nur, dass ich alle Not hatte mit
dem letzten Licht ins Lager zurueckzufinden. Da hat man sich schon maechtig
Gedanken gemacht und nach mir gesucht, sorry dafuer. Richtig froh bin ich
ueber die Ankunft meiner Ausruestung am Morgen von Tag 11!!! Nun hat der
Nervenkrieg ein Ende und ich bin zurueck im Spiel. Herzliche Gruesse nochmal
an alle Leser meines Blogs und alle meine lieben zu Hause, Euer Lander
After some libation in a local tea shack we all headed for our tents, head
torches on and prepared for sleep, another full and exciting day over, many
more still to come.
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