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  Mountain Madness Cho Oyu 2004 Expedition reporting from the Tibetan Plateau


August 25th – Cho Oyu Dispatch #1

This is Michael O'Donnell on the Cho Oyu 2004 Expedition reporting from Lhasa, Tibet. The group arrived in Kathmandu on August 22. We spent two nights in Kathmandu and flew to Lhasa on the 24th. Everyone is doing well and enjoying the sightseeing tour of Lhasa. Today we visited the amazing Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple. Assistant Guide, Casey Henley, Phendan Sherpa, Lhama Jungbu Sherpa and our cook, Lakpa left on the 25th and will accompany the gear overland to our Cho Oyu Chinese Base Camp. They were delayed one day in Kathmandu because Brad Skidmore's checked bag didn't arrive with Brad on the 24th. Everything else is on schedule. The team plans on spending one more day in Lhasa before driving to Shigatse on the 27th

August 27th Cho Oyu Dispatch #2

This is Michael O'Donnell reporting from the Tibetan Plateau. We all had a great time in Lhasa. Everybody absolutely loved the tours and especially the Potalla Palace. Kay has decided that she is going to redo her whole house around the design of the Potalla's, and so she went looking for large door knockers. We told her that big door knockers would be hard to come by and probably very expensive, but of course she found just the right pair for cheap! The joke going around is that new knockers cost a lot of money but they can be had for only $30 in Tibet (ha! Ha!).  

We are halfway to Shigatse right now. We had to take a whole different road than expected. There is a huge detour because they are working on the road. It’s been a wild ride on this high pass and we got into an absolutely huge traffic jam. We made this best of it though. We walked up the pass while all the trucks were locked up in the traffic jam there, so we got a little acclimatization walk-in up to 17,800 feet which was good.

Things are going great. Everybody is in great spirits and everything is on schedule. We are now four hours outside of Shigatse. Another update coming at you when from Shigatse.

Dispatches

Our 2004 Cho Oyu team:

Kay LeClaire – Spokane, WA . Kay is currently pursuing the Seven Summits of the world. Having climbed 5 out of the 7, she has Carstensz and Everest left on her list. Cho Oyu will prepare Kay for her climb of Everest next spring.

Bob Taylor – San Diego, CA. Bob has a wealth of climbing experience including successful climbs of Aconcagua, Kilimanjaro, Orizaba, many North American classics and numerous summits in the Bolivian Andes. Last summer he smoked up the north ridge of Mt. Baker.

Brad Skidmore – Ft Thomas, KY. Brad has reached the summit of Aconcagua. He enjoys running when not working as a physician back home in Kentucky.

Moira Smith - Vancouver, B. C. Moira has climbed 6 out of the 7 summits. Her climb of Cho Oyu will prepare her for her next objective, Mt. Everest. She enjoys climbing. mountaineering, ski touring and rock climbing in North America . As a geologist, Moira has traveled around the world including engaging in field work with geological mapping in the Northern Coast Range and St. Elias Range in British Columbia.

Rick Grey – London, United Kingdom. Our guides say Rick is normally the strongest one on their rope team. Rick trains by running, swimming and playing squash. He’s successful climbed many of the Ecuador volcanoes including Chimborazo.  

Elizabeth Ayres – Tucson, AZ. Elizabeth will be trekking in with our Cho Oyu climbing team. She has climbed numerous peaks around the world including Island Peak in Nepal, Mt. Blanc in Europe, the Eiger in Switzerland and various classic alpine summits and rock climbing crags around the US. She enjoys swimming, hiking and climbing.

Guides:

Michael O'Donnell – Ouray, CO. Michael is our Cho Oyu expedition leader. A certified AMGA Alpine Mountain guide, his guiding career started in 1971 and he is considered one of the world’s most respected mountain guides and world-class explorers. Michael has guided throughout the world in all disciplines of climbing, from difficult ice and rock routes to moderate alpine glaciated peaks. He successfully summitted Mt. Everest and guided the first blind climber to the top. Michael is also an acclaimed team builder and corporate coach. In addition to his wealth of experience, Michael brings along a sense of humor and abundance of energy with every trip he leads!

Casey Henley – Bend, OR. Casey will be our Cho Oyu assistant guide. He grew up in the Canadian Rockies where he learned to ice, rock, and alpine climb as well as backcountry ski. He is a graduate of the UCC Guide Program, and has guided throughout Western Canada, the United States, Asia, and in South America. He has numerous ascents to his credit such as Ama Dablam, Denali, Mt. Logan (with ski descent), Mt. St. Elias Range, Aconcagua, Canadian Rockies, and ascents in Patagonia. Being in remote and wild mountain areas is a passion of his that he loves to share with people. He is known for his mellow, friendly teaching style and demeanor.

We wish our team a safe, successful and memorable trip!

Christine Boskoff

Mountain Madness, Inc.

 

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