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  Carlos Pauner GI and GII Expedition 2004: Goodbye to the moraine


Goodbye to the moraine

It has started to snow again.  It's strange, but I am not surprised.  It has been the usual in these 60 days of base camp, so why should it be different now?  While the snowflakes fall, my hope to leave tonight to try to climb Gasherbrum II vanishes.  I was ready again, I had enough courage to take off solo tonight towards the white summit of this great mountain.  It won't be possible.  The snow erases any footstep and for a solitary person, in the middle of bad weather and with the entire mountain covered with soft snow, the possibilities of success are nil.  There is no one here who is trying again, so the decision is totally personal.  I think I have worked and suffered too much in this expeditions and I am not going to take off into a desperate attack in the middle of the night, assuming some risks, without a doubt, unmeasured for a summit of these characteristics.  The mountain has not given me those two days of good weather that would have been enough.

I relax and I only think on my return.  I have a bittersweet sensation.  On one hand, to have resisted to the end, to have perseverated on the mountain, has let me take the summit of Gasherbrum I, more difficult than its twin and that fills me with satisfaction, especially because of the hard and fatal season.  On the other hand, I feel I have my backpack only half full, and that makes me sad.  Maybe I am demanding myself too much, but I feel that it had to be that way.  Also, the accident of our teammate has clouded the environment and my feelings.  There is no happiness, only the sensation that I have not wasted all this time, that a summit justifies all the days of hard work  on this moraine of the Gasherbrum glacier.

It's time to go back, to see family and friends, in fact, to be normal people far away from this hostile environment that has made us brute to the limit.  There is the road to life, towards the green valleys and towards oxygen.  Soon we will gain quality of life again and we will feel like humans again.  Gasherbrum II stays here and so many other things.  The lived experiences will go with us forever and, in a moment, the will to come back to walk on these mountains will also return.  It is always this way.  I will quietly rest for the moment, trying to see the positive in all that happened, to continue dreaming with this world of beauty and infinite heights.

Carlos

Translated from Spanish by Jorge Rivera

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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