Hello EverestNews.com, I am back
in ABC. Everything is OK, I am reasonably healthy and fine. On April 16, 05 at
3pm Chinese time, I saw a huge massif of Mt. Everest and I knew that is it.
I left ABC on April 14 in the
morning. On serac I met Ed Viesturs groups returning, all of us fighting
fierce wind. I parked for the night on the top of serac, the night was
miserable because my shovel and sleeping pad were in Camp 2.
In the morning, fighting with
the wind continued to the point I almost turned around. By the time I reached
the Camp 2 site (7100m) wind calmed down and I could rest in the afternoon.
My summit attempt started at
10pm. By 2am, I reached the bottom of the rocky rib on which people usually
have Camp 3. It was impossible to find the way through the rock band above so
I found ice crevasse where I had couple hours of sleep. Cold made me walk but
soon I realized that there is no way I can find my way before dawn. I had to
find another crevasse to spend the rest of the night. Of course I could any
time return to my tent, which would mean the end of my summit try.
I started again after about
7am, climbed dry rock ( fix ropes do not exist before the groups come) and
traverse right on the rocky ledges. Unfortunately the snow which would make
things very fast does not exist this season.
I left my thermos half empty
at the end of the ledges ( the only thing I had except a few things in my
pockets) and continued on ice field which ends up on the summit plateau. In
about 45 minutes I was at the east edge of the plateau from which you can see
the huge mountains ahead of you - Kangchenjunga, Everest and Lhotse. This edge
is continuously modeled by the wind and looks more like polar area then the
summit of the mountain.
There were no emotions except
constant fear. With slightly frostbitten hands and toes from my previous
attempt and two days without water I knew then any additional bivouac would be
critical and probably with bad consequences. I also then fully realized that
no one can help me. Those people who were already on the mountain were just
around Camp 1 - they can be as well thousand of miles away, it would be
exactly the same.
I returned back to Camp 2 by
the evening just finishing my 24 hour shift.
Next day I did not start till
4pm. Wind was so fierce that the tent was flat on several occasions. In Camp 1
once again I met Ed Viesturs groups and got plenty to drink. I continued down
the hill, tired as average dead person. Made it to ABC by midnight.
I did not recognize Base
Camp. It was similar to the scene from Dances with Wolves when John T. Dunbar
is returning for his diary. For two weeks, there was none, then three other
small expeditions came. I got used to the solitude and I wanted to keep it
that way. There are at least 15 expeditions and about 80 yaks are coming
today. There are no more yaks in the valley, the arrangement has been done
that Tibetan porters will carry my stuff down the valley tomorrow.
Cho Oju will always be in my
heart for its beauty, its fierce wind and the loneliness I was able to live
through while climbing here.
Base Camp near Nangpa La under
Mt. Cho Oju
April 18, 05
P.S. Martin is not
off to Everest...
Sport Everest Boot has made some minor changes by adding
more Kevlar. USES Expeditions / High
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-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
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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®
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See more here.