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   Everest Summiter IVAN VALLEJO RICAURTE: Summit report re-cap Part 2


Update: TOWARDS THE SUMMIT OF NANGA PARBAT: PART 2

Very still in my sleeping bag at 7,250 m at C4, I can't get even a second of sleep because of the lack of oxygen and I laugh thinking about the name of the artifact: sleeping bag.  Yeah, right!  I don't close my eyes, not for a moment, and I keep fighting desperation and suffocation, looking for relief with breathing exercises.  Shouldn't it be called suffering bag?

 

At eleven thirty in the evening the alarm sounds.  Inside such a tiny tent, all Fernando and I have to do has to be in order and by turns.  While the heat of the stove helps us melt snow, I get my head out to see how is the scenery and I find the moon, which is so full and is spilling and flooding the entire Nanga Parbat with its silver flow, as well as the Diamir Valley and in fact all the mountains of Pakistan.  Fernando, nervous, seems to wait for a go sign before a race.  To ease the moment, while we have chocolate with the super proteins cocktail and oat cookies, I strut one of Carlos Vives' songs which I like the most: "...y ahí llego yo, y ahí vamo'a ver lo que gozá..." ("...and here I come, and we'll see what how to have a good time...").

 

At one in the morning we are outside the tent and we meet 21 members of expeditions of a lot of places: Spanish, French, Pakistani, Italians, Swiss and two with a yellow, blue and red flag: Fercho and yours truly.

 

Silvio Mondinelli (Italy) and I lead, the rest follow.  How nice it is to go ahead opening the way, negotiating with the snow, making a trail so that the rest can use it.  We cross the lowest part of the basin with fear; in the surroundings, a week ago, an enormous avalanche fell and swept away the Japanese's C4.

 

The line of fireflies that left from the camp stretches little by little, now it looks like a luminous centipede.  Only five fireflies go ahead: Silvio, Nacho, two Pakistanis and I, the rest goes way behind.

 

At two and a half in the morning we reach the foot of the slope that forms the final trapeze towards the summit.  Silvio and I, taking turns at the leading end, get into that wall which I suppose is enormous, because neither the light or my view are useful to know its true size.  From there, with all the internal noise I had inside (Loca de la Casa fades away), my thoughts go silent and the images move in slow motion.  I am above 7,400 m and I don't have much oxygen.  I notice the light of Silvio's lamp ahead of me and Nacho's light and steps behind me.  He climbs, I climb, we climb.  He chats, I chat, we chat, quietly with ourselves.

 

The moon.  Oh, the moon on my back!

 

It is so pretty: round, large, moving slowly, putting on a pajama because it is bed time.  When it came out tonight it had a pretty and shiny silver dress; now it has changed, that yellow pajama has printed lambs.  That means, the moon also counts lambs before it goes to sleep, just like Karma.

 

Then I enter hat dimension in which I don't care about time and distances.  Being there is to feel a bubble of air, trying to float among a dense thickness like glue, trying to open the trail with our will, despite the weakness.  The bubble of air is my lungs with me inside, but in this order.  Only because they exist I can exist.

 

Iván Vallejo Ricaurte

EXPEDITONEER

 

Translated from Spanish by Jorge Rivera

 

Updates

 

 

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.

 







 

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