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  Mt. Everest 2005: Alpine Ascents Everest 2005 Namaste from the Icefall


Update: The Icefall
    
Hello everybody,
After having celebrated the Puja ceremony, we feel ready to our first excursion up through the Khumbu icefall. The Sherpas bring us the classic morning tea while we are finishing getting ready. It is possible to note a little bit of anxiety on the faces of our team mates in the mess tent, which is easy to understand, this labyrinth of unstable ice has taken the lives of more than twenty people in the past. We might think that it has a menacing beauty.
We have divided the group in two smaller ones to avoid creating a traffic jammed in the exposed areas. Speed is synonymous of safety in this particular case.

It is a spectacular day, no wind and a wonderful deep blue sky above us. Looking up at it, my thoughts fly to a very distant place; the clinking sounds of the climbing hardware that we are carrying on the harnesses wake me up to reality. It is nine in the morning and we are good to go.

A short distance from basecamp, we have to put our crampons on and not too far away we find the beginning of the fixed lines. It is getting hot, I feel a few drops of sweat sliding down my forehead. We are overheating. We take a break to have a few sips of water and take a layer off to cool down a bit. Not long after having reassumed the climb, we face the first aluminum ladder. All the hours practicing ladder crossing paid off and everybody do it with safety and efficiency. We have lost our innocence according to Kent. The anxiety gives way to confidence and the objective dangers are eclipsed a little bit by the focused agility of our progress. This is what we were preparing for since a long time ago. There are always contradictory feelings up there in the mountains: you can feel exhilarating and energized but at the same time overwhelmed and vulnerable.



After crossing three more aluminum ladders, the last one placed above a seemingly bottomless crevasse, we reach the base of a very unstable area of the icefall known as the popcorn because it is formed by a huge pile of ice blocks of all sizes that covers a big area. As you can imagine, under the influence of glacier movement it can act likewise. The altitude in my altimeter says 18.220 feet. This was the goal for today. The group lead by Dave and Lakpa has caught up with us and we started our descent back down to basecamp. We get back on time to have lunch. Everybody is safe and sound.

Tomorrow is a day to rest, recover and prepare to move all the way up to Camp 1 (19.500 feet) where we will spend two nights. Then we will move to Camp 2 (21.300 feet) to spend another couple of nights up there before descending all the way down to basecamp.
We will keep you informed of our progress.

All the best,
Jose Luis and crew.

Dispatches

Vern Tejas, Willi Prittie, Dave Morton, Jose Luis Peralvo, and Lakpa Rita Sherpa will lead the Alpine Ascent team on Everest this Spring. They will attempt the standard South East ridge route.

GUIDE STAFF (BIOS)

Lakpa Rita Sherpa
Senior Guide & Sirdar

Vern Tejas
Senior Guide

Willi Prittie
Senior Guide

Dave Morton
Senior Guide

Jose Luis Peralvo
Senior Guide

Ellie Henke
Base Camp Manager
CLIMBERS

Nigel Clark

Esther Colwill

Ron Farb

Kevin Grant

Cathy Groninger

Kent Groninger

Mostafa Mahmoud

Jeanne Stawiecki

Dianette
Strange-Wells

Tony Van Marken

David Liano

Danielle Fisher

 

Millet One Sport Everest Boot Expedition and mountaineering boot for high altitude and extremely cold conditions. The Everest has conquered all 14 mountains over 8,000m and also the Seven Summits- and has now had a makeover to ensure continued peak preformance. With a newer sung, Alpine Fit, and even lighter Expedition footwear for mountaineering in conditions of extreme cold.  NOTE US SIZES LISTED. See more here.

 

A cold 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.

 






 

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