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  SKi8000 expedition 2004: Update 8


Update 8: Before climbing up the mountain, we had a nice day of ice climbing close to base camp. It was useful to rehearse some techniques with the crampons.

Finally, on the 5th of April, Joost, Greg, Pemba, Pasang and Ang Pemba left for OC&C Strategy Consultants camp 1 at 6425 m. A 5h30 wake up is followed by a breakfast difficult to make progress on. We left at 6h30.

The way to OC&C camp 1 has two parts. First, a two hour walk around the glacier going up and down, up and down, without gaining any height. At about 5900 meters, a scree slope starts which leads up to OC&C camp 1 at 6425 m. This scree slope is long and painfull, but we were prepared. At 11h30 we started pitching tents in OC&C camp 1!

Greg: "Literature is rich describing the route from base camp to camp 1. Complaints are more than frequent regarding the scree slope leading to camp 1, so I knew it would be hard. I hardly slept during the night because of nerves... After a year of intensive preparations this morning meant for me the real start! I tried to have some breakfast in the early morning and left base camp, feeling weak. During the walk, I never looked back and before I knew it I had arrived in OC&C camp 1 (four and a half hours)! It was great to be in a tent at 6425 meters and cooking some food, and feeling well. I actually slept quite well. Now we are back in base camp, 2 rest days before heading back up the mountain. Plan is then to sleep in OC&C camp 1 and then climb up to Fugro camp 2 at 7000 meters. I think staying healthy is very important at this stage and hope for the best."

08

Joost: "Getting up before the sun warms your tent is a different experience after 6 "lazy" days in basecamp. Trying to force down a fat omelet completes a great start of the day. After taking two bites, time is up and I quickly finish packing my backpack before hastily following the rest of the team through the morenes. When the sun peeks over the mountains I discover that I forgot my suncream... DISASTER! Unprotected skin quickly transforms into baked meat at this altitude. I shout towards Greg, who is 300 meters ahead. Fortunately he understands me and leaves his cream on a rock next to the trail. Phew! The small things will determine success or failure in this phase. A severely burned face could very well end your expedition. The climb up the much discussed (and feared) scree slope discloses great views on the surrounding glaciers, and I actually succeed to enjoy it. Camp 1 is an eagles nest on the W ridge of Cho Oyu and provides a detailed view on the route to the summit. The route seems icy, with a lot of rock. Not the perfect skiing conditions. Now back in basecamp I look back at a good start of the actual climb and I anxiously look forward to the next weeks."

Herman: "Feeling weak with intestinal problems I stayed behind in Base Camp. With mixed feelings I wished everybody succes on their first ascent to OC&C camp 1. With walki talki's I kept in contact with Joost and Greg up the mountain. Early in the afternoon the Sherpa's arrived back at base camp. Everything went Ok. Only Ang Pemba had a headache. At night both Joost and Greg said they were Ok, feeling well! Good, nothing to worrie about for me. Hopefully I can join Joost and Greg on the next climb to OC&C camp 1."

copyright SKi8000 Expedition

 

Dispatches

 
Altitech2: Digital Altimeter, Barometer, Compass and Thermometer. Time/Date/Alarms. Chronograph with 24 hour working range. Timer with stop, repeat and up function. Rotating Bezel. Leveling bubble. Carabiner latch. E.L. 3 second backlight. Water resistant. 4" x 2-1/4" x 3/4" 2 oz. Requires 1 CR2032 battery. See more here.

 






 

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