Wednesday, April 30, 2008
All of of our members, except the Mallorys and Linda, made it to camp 2. They are all healthy and strong. The Mallorys are a little bit behind schedule, but they are sleeping in camp 1 right now and tomorrow they will come up to camp 2 for a short visit before returning to camp 1.
(No clue as to why they are "a little bit behind schedule".)
To read the full dispatch from Summit Climb go to www.summitclimb.com and look for the Everest Climb, Trek, Lhotse & Island Peak Spring 2008 link under "News" in the left-hand column (about half-way down the page).
Monday, April 28, 2008
I have arranged a flight home leaving Kathmandu April 29, 2008. My ticket has departure times but no arrival times so the exact day and time are questionable.
I discovered today that even though this is the only time to attempt to summit Everest it is not the best time to see Nepal. I will have to return when things are green and the air is fresh after the monsoon season to get a true appreciation for the country.
No news is good news -right?
Friday, April 25, 2008
My anke and leg show little sign of improvement. I had hoped to be treated at home but may have to see a doctor here. As for now I just keep hobbling around this overcrowded polluted city of blackouts.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
I am now back in Kathmandu trying to get a flight out. I was going to do some more hiking but am afraid I might competely severe this tendon and that would be disasterous.
Today is Democratic Day. Lots of military around and I saw the soon to be owsted Prime Minister drive by. The King says he is a Nepali citizen and will remain in the country but he will likely loose the palace and all his possessions and wealth. We will have to see what the Moasists decide to do. Strange that the military which fought against the Moaists now has to protect them. Also, the Moaists are atheists in a country of strong Budhist and Hindu religion.
The front page of the Kathmandu Times said anyone trying to disrupt the Olympic torch possession or cause problems at Everest would be shot dead. Be thankful we live in Canada.
Monday, April 21, 2008
Hello! We have made it to Everest Base Camp along with Adam, Alan and Laura. We arrived yesterday after following the very rocky Khumbu major moraine for a few hours. We are basking in sunshine at 17,500 ft. We are dealing with some altitude issues; not the least being short of breath.
We are surrounded by towering snow-covered peaks where loud avalanches are a regular occurrence.
We have a full view of the challenging and somewhat dangerous Khumbu Icefall that we will be attempting in 2 or 3 days which will lead up to Camp I at about 19,500 ft. We will be crossing multiple crevasses on extended ladders amongst other challenges.
We are ready!
Saturday, April 19, 2008
From Yangji, my guide's wife
The Nepali new year just happened and it is now the year of the rat.
From Ian a Canadian who tried to rent a helicopter
The Chinese are now in control of all of Nepali air space and only offically Chinese sanctioned flights are permitted.
From Kurt a guide who recently was in contact with Everest base camp
An army liason officer has been assigned to each expedition at base camp. Satellite phones and video equipment are being confiscated. This should be interesting since I passed several high tech camera equipment crews on my hike down.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Monday April 14th, we leave Namche (Dan, Alan, Adam and Laura) to go towards Pangboche at 13000 feet. It is a long day starting at 9:00am and ending at 4:00pm and we are all feeling a little elevation fatigue. The route follows the cut-out side of steep mountains where a fall to the side would lead to a 1000 plus foot drop. You soon learn to stay on the uphill side of the trail when the yak trains pass as other wise they would knock you off the trail. Everything is carried by porters or yaks or yak-cow combos called Jobkes.
Tuesday April 15th, we rest in Pangboche and it is a well needed rest for Adam who has not had a rest day since the start of his trek in Lukla.
Wednesday April 16th, we went to visit the local Lama who gave us his blessings of safe travel and this was interesting. From there we travelled along the mountain side to arrive at Pheriche at 14200ft. Here we met up with Barbara and we are now a complete family of five, for now (is that a sigh of relief from my family?). Laura and Adam are climbing machines and are not having to work at all to deal with the trek. Alan is doing very well as well particularly dealing with his troublesome achilles but it has not slowed him down too much. The chest infection that I have is still lingering but does allow me to continue never the less and I hope for a recovery before I reach base camp (in three more days). The lungs have to be working at full capacity in the higher elevations. Now Barbara, this is the first that we have talked to her in almost two weeks. She has been doing some high elevation climbing and trekking but it has cost her as her achilles tendon is stretched with related muscle bruising and she is going to be heading down to recover tomorrow. We will see where this ends up.
The last blog was sent from Namche and there was to be only one Internet sight above Namche at Tengboche however, it was closed. We did learn however, that we could trek from Pheriche to where we are sending this blog at Dingboche a 30 min hike uphill both ways (haha). So glad to have this last opportunity to post. We hope for a continued success to base camp where our next update will occur from 17500ft.
In general, the route is absolutely spectacular with dramatic snow covered peaks in every direction against the clear blue high elevation skies.
Saturday, April 12, 2008
He landed in Lukla this morning and is now only 1 day behind us. Barbara is ahead of us but we have had no communication with her for about 10 days. We hope she is well and we will meet her in the next few days hopefully but it is a big mountain.
Dan's chest infection has progressed further to the bad. Dan went to a Tibeten doctor in Namche today to get a second oppinion on taking Ampicillin (antibiotic). He had never heard of it and he only had herbal medicines. Dan decided to try them and got 3 small packages of 10 days worth of what looks like various shades of rabbit poop. Dan has taken 3 today and so far is still standing. He desperately needs the lungs to clear before he should go higher. Happy birthday to Him today as he celebrates with 'rabbit poop' droppings for dessert!
Alan and Laura are feeling quite strong and looking forward to moving up the mountain after Adam arrives.
We did an aclimatization climb yesterday up the mountain about 1500 feet to Everest View Lodge with great views of the high mountains all around.
Dan, Alan, Laura
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Friday April 4th - Dan was up all night at the Mallory Insurance Office getting to bed at 5am and up 1 hr. later at 6am to catch the 11:00am flight from Toronto to Hong Kong and then to Kathmadu. Very long flight (~24hrs total) and glad to arrive in Kathmandu.
Kathmandu is the wildest City you can immagine with completely chaotic traffic flow, impossibly rough and narrow roads, and people everywhere. The air quality is very poor.
We were in Kathmandu 1 day and we were glad to get our early morning flight in an 18 seater Twin Otter plane to Lukla. It plummits out of the sky towards the landing strip and it lands on the shortest runway in existance in the mtns. Fortunatly for us, the runway was uphill which helped slow the plane down. It will be a wild downhill take-off on our return.
The two day trek to Namche (which is where we are now, at 11200 feet in elevation) is remarkable, challenging, beautiful and very steep. The tiny sherpa porters should all be called Galioths with the massive loads they carry - one tiny guy had a chesterfield strapped on his back! The trek is across many towering and long swing bridges and not for the faint at heart or anyone afraid of heights. The trail follows deep valleys surrounded by towering snow covered peaks. There is a turquoise glacier-melt raging river most of the way.
Unfortunatly, Dan caught a chest infection and Alan and Laura are struggling with stiff muscles and joints but other than that we are all well. After a few days we should be good to go. We will be waiting here at Namche for Adam's arrival in a few days. We hope so because Adam arrives tomorrow and that is election day in Nepal and everything (traffic, phones etc.) will be shut down in anticipation of possible riots. We don't even know if he is going to be able to get a ride from the airport to the hotel on his arrival in Kathmandu. It should be an exciting time for him and we hope for the best. Meanwhile we have a beautiful view of snow covered peaks on the steep side of a mtn. with beautiful sunlight and blue skies to enjoy.
Thursday, April 3, 2008