Monday, April 26, 2010

Back from Camp 3 - 23,500'

 Photo 1 – Near vertical ice climbing at 23,000’. Ugggh.

Photo 2 – Yours truly on the Lhotse Face at 23,500’. The prominent bump in the background is the Geneva Spur. The last obstacle before Camp 4 at 26,000’ – my staging ground for the summit attempt. Notice Mount Everest still rising mightily to the left and still being pounded by the jet stream.

Photo 3 – View down the Western Cwm from Camp 3 at 23,500’. Many mountains that have been towering above me for weeks are now at eye level. Notice the “flatish” mountain in the far background. This mountain is Cho Oyu standing at 26,907’. I stood on top of this mountain on September 29, 2005. As you can imagine, I had the opposite view – staring at Mount Everest, Lhotse, and the Western Cwm. I wondered to myself if I would ever have the opportunity to climb there. Mission accomplished. I am so blessed!

The entire team has returned safely from our 5 day trip up the mountain. As planned, we did climb up to the sight of our Camp 3, which will be at 23,500’. Along with this great accomplishment coupled with several more days at Camp 2 we are now sufficiently acclimated and ready to mount an attempt upon the summit. However, the jet stream is not ready for us to try for the summit. The current wind speed on the summit of Mount Everest is 55 m.p.h. Too strong to try and climb up there. So, as of now we are anticipating 10 – 14 days of rest at basecamp before we try for the summit. It very well could be sooner, but we must plan for the longer period of time. Currently, we receive daily weather forecasts for multiple elevations on Mount Everest, including the summit. Once we receive a favorable long term forecast we will stage an attempt upon the summit. So what will occupy our time while waiting for the summit window? Please keep following along. Thank you for your prayers.