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  Canadian Mt. Everest 2005: Sean is still suffering from a respiratory bug


©EverestNews.com

Update: Monday 25th April, 8pm. Everest Camp Two
(EST is 9 hours 45mins behind Nepal)

Sean is still suffering from a respiratory bug

Diary by Harold Mah

I am at Camp Two (20,500 feet, barometric pressure 462) after a hard but not dangerous climb up 1,200 feet.

Sean has stayed at Camp One for another night. After a night in which all I could hear was Sean doing his best yak impressions and mumbling about his girlfriend, Sean got up this morning and announced that he did not have the energy to climb to Camp Two. In fact, he did not feel up to descending to Base Camp either and has decided to wait it out at Camp One for another day. There is lots of food there and medicine so heíll be fine and he is in good spirits. But, the respiratory bug is taking its toll and although he feels strong, he is not sure what is wrong with him. He may have to go further down the mountain than Base Camp in order to shake it off. It seems like quite a few climbers have the bug, according to our Sherpas and itís very similar to what I had when I arrived at Base Camp. So the good news for Sean is that I recovered from the bug quite quickly and hopefully heíll have the same experience.

We had a sunny start to the day as I climbed up to Camp Two. Itís not as technical a climb as the Ice Fall but everyone starts slowing down, due to the altitude. I met climbers from the US, Japan, Spain, Russia and the UK as well as Pemba Dorjee who holds the world record for a successful summit climb on Everest of 8 hours and 10 minutes on May 21st 2004.

Of interest today were the 5-storey crevasses that we had to go through. They were quite safe but dramatically huge. At one point there was a 3 ladder crossing over a huge crevasse. The main challenge was the 80 degree heat in the Western Cwm. Itís like climbing over a giant satellite dish with all the sunís heat reflected off the startling white snow on to your neck and in to your face and eyes. After the heat of the day itís now sub-zero and getting colder, so I will be huddled back in my sleeping bag soon.

Camp Two has been set up with a mess tent and sleeping tents. We are again sleeping on a block of ice but this time it is not poking through my back! The Sherpas have already carried our food supplies and the oxygen for Seanís summit bid and the supplies are in place and ready. Lunch today was a traditional sherpa meal of rice and meat. They have been throwing in some pasta in to their dishes, for the westerners, but I have asked them to feed me whatever they eat. I am the only westerner in this party and I love their food, so it seems unnecessary to make me something special. They had a big sherpa party today with lots of hot juice which was a lot of fun. I canít understand everything they are saying, as they donít speak English all the time, but it was easy to understand their spirit and enthusiasm.

At Camp Two we enter the true climbing area. Camp Three is cut in to the snow and ice of a yellow band of fossils and rock on the Lhotse face. It leads to the South Col where Camp Four is located from where climbers prepare for their final assault. Tonight Iíll sleep well and prepare for the climb to Camp Three.

More later, Harold

Dispatches

 

 

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