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  Mountain Madness Cho Oyu 2004 Expedition reporting from ABC

Sunday, September 5: This is Mike O’Donnell reporting from Cho Oyu. It is a beautiful day here. Today we made the first carry to Camp I and then came back down. All the team members did well. We have now heard there are 32 teams on the mountain. We are lucky to be one of the first ones and are lucky to have our Camp I so well established. We are way ahead of schedule in relation to most of the teams. Weather has been great with a couple of snows but nothing too dramatic.  We will leave tonight and go to Camp I and then make it over the next few days to Camp II. Everybody is health, happy and getting along well. It is shaping up to be a good climb.

Dispatch:  September 7th: Michael O'Donnell called from Advanced Base Camp (ABC).  The team is having a great time and is currently resting at ABC after climbing to camp 1 a couple days ago.  They were able to establish camp 1 on prime real estate before the other teams arrived.  The rest days at ABC are spent eating, reading, sleeping and playing cards.  At night from ABC lights can be seen on the Nangpa La from Tibetan traders returning home from Nepal.  The glaciated pass is a famous trading route between Nepal and Tibet.  The group plans to move up to camp 1 tomorrow and spend the night before climbing higher. Michael O'Donnell



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.


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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