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 Carlos Pauner Cho Oyu 2004: Wrap Up


Summit of Cho Oyu 8,201 meters: I am in the highest point, but the effort has not ended.  A plain is between me and the summit of this mountain.  I know that I am going to reach it, nothing can stop me now.  The night has been long and cold.  From my little shelter at 7,100 m., usually called camp 2, I have left at 3 in the morning, climbing fast on these cold slopes of ice and snow.  It is 11 in the morning and I can see the summit.  There in the background, in the other direction from where I come.  I see Everest, in the back and I know I have arrived.  Another summit, like always, not without effort.  Technically, Cho Oyu is not difficult.  The only technical difficulty resides in a little bump of ice that is completely equipped with ropes.  The rest is a slope of snow, sometimes a little steeper.  Like every eight-thousand, it is long and cold.  I have been able to see it for myself.  There was almost no wind, but a slight and cold breeze was getting down to my bones.  Now it doesn't matter.  I have arrived to the end, maybe pushing the machinery to its limits a little, to take advantage of this first period of good weather and to finish quickly.  I think Cho Oyu deserves this.  An easy tactic, individual and simple.  There is no need for big means or large teams to climb this beautiful mountain. You just need illusion, strength in your legs and clear ideas.  I have been able to see for myself how people without ambition crawled on this mountain, deciding that it was not possible to continue climbing because of the wind, the cold or whatever.  I have seen people with a will of steel, that with no disturbances or noise have gained meters on the mountain, little by little, almost in a hush.  I have also seen people that has pushed to the maximum, beyond their possibilities, and that finally have had the fortune of being at base camp with medics that have brought them back to life again.  What a job, to climb mountains and to dedicate to try to save those who voluntarily have gone to the edge.  I have seen a little of everything.  I am happy.  I have rushed and in less than 10 days from base camp I have climbed to this singular point.  I settled my only camp in two days in the middle of the mountain and after three days of rest I left base camp to spend the night in this place at 7,100 m.  Then, in just one try, with effort and conviction, I have climbed Cho Oyu.  Now I see the other side.  I see Everest, which makes a grimace to me, maybe as a prelude of our next spring date.  I remember that North face and how we fought there some years ago.  Curiously, now I am also with my good friend and good climber Iņaki Ochoa de Olza.  It was long ago since we weren't together and it's been a pleasure to be able to hug each other on the summit.  I remember all my friends, those with whom I have shared parts of my life and with whom I will surely share many more things.  I feel like seeing them again, to tell them everything.  For that, I have to climb down and I do it quickly. Goodbye Cho Oyu, it's been a pleasure to suffer on your slopes.  It was a beautiful ascent on a noble mountain.  I keep this big remembrance and I take off downwards, where life is, where everything is, where I belong.

Carlos

Translated from Spanish by Jorge Rivera

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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