Expedition Dispatches From Around The Globe!
Posts for every team can be found under the drop-down menus at the right of this page. We have organized our expeditions into Denali, International and Mount Everest categories, with further organization by their Team Meeting Date. We try to post from each team on each day, but this is not always possible, due to communication challenges in mountainous regions, so keep in mind that “No News Is Good News!”
Click on the audio dispatch icons to hear phone calls from our climbers and guides, so that you can better enjoy the experience through their words, not ours. Click on a post’s title to open it in its own window to leave a comment for your favorite climber. Above all, have fun and dream big!
Well, another successful Everest season is over!
This morning Manoj flew to India to visit friends and recover from a touch of frostbite. We are taking care of all the end of season details, then I am off to Thailand for some R and R on the beach!
Enjoy and we’ll see you next year for the Mountain Trip Everest Expedition 2014!
-Scott Woolums, Kathmandu, Nepal
This is just a quick report to let everyone know were back in Kathmandu! Manoj, myself and DaWang Chu all flew out from Base Camp yesterday direct (well, almost, see below) to Kathmandu.
This is proving to be a bit of a journey as things can be here in Nepal. We showed up at 6am at the helipad in Base Camp, and finally at 9.30am, we caught a short ride to the village of Pheriche, spent another couple of hours waiting, and then caught another heli company and off to Lukla. After a short refuel we were finally off to Kathmandu! Only 8 hrs to get out!
There are lots of friends to say “hi” to, and a ,lot of packing, changing tickets and all, before we’ll finally be headed home. Manoj will be leaving tomorrow, I plan a few more days to sort equipment and pack everything away for next season.
Namaste from Scott Woolums in Kathmandu
Scott and Manoj are going to fly from Base Camp to Kathmandu via helicopter, as Manoj had some frostbite develop on his feet and we are trying to expedite his descent. The weather below them has been very, very rainy, which is complicating things with air travel, but we hope that they can fly as soon as possible.
All of our Sherpas are off the mountain and Base Camp has been bustling with our team cleaning and packing. There are still a few climbers on the upper mountain, and we wish them well. We will probably post one more update from Kathmandu, and will try to include a number of pictures.
And more from Manoj:
A very excited Manoj called in a report today, describing the team’s incredible summit day. It sounds like the team had very little/almost no wind, clear skies, and unlimited visibility as they stood on the summit. A perfect summit day! The plan is to leave Camp 2 and head back to Base Camp one last time tomorrow morning, early.
Good news, the Sherpas called just a little while ago and said they were just coming into Camp 2 after a long, hot descent down the Lhotse Face today.
It is always a challenge coming down the day after summiting. Conditions were reported as windy and cold at the South Col this morning when they left. One advantage of having a 4 to 1 Sherpa ratio is camp 4 is taken down and cleaned in one shot. We also had another group of 2 Sherpas go up from Base Camp to Camp 3 today to bring down empty O2 bottles.
A big day up to C3 and back to BC in one day, thank you Karma Geljin and Da Kusang! Everyone should be back in BC tomorrow morning around 10am Nepal time. They are planning to spend the night at C2 tonight and then come down the icefall very early am.
It is very warm now in BC, there was another collapse in the icefall today and a Sherpa from another team took a fall off a ladder but was ok. The Sherpas are coming down now with very heavy loads supporting all the summits in the last few days. These guys are the super stars of Everest! I will post photos when Manoj is back in Camp.
Everyone is safe back at Camp 4 now following a very good summit day. Stopping at the South Col for the night on the way down gives everyone rest before going down to Camp 2 tomorrow.
A really big congratulations to all in the summit team today. Fantastic effort, and what a perfect day!
We just received a call from the summit, we have 5 on top right now! 7.25am, Yahoo!
Conditions seem perfect, with very light winds and not too many other climbers. The ascent started out very windy, but conditions have improved through the night.
We have Manoj Vora, DaWang Chu Sherpa, Serki Sherpa, Pasang Gombu Sherpa and DaNoru Sherpa enjoying the view. Manoj and all the Sherpas sound good, and are reporting no problems. Interestingly, no groups are visible coming up from the North side of the mountain. All things good here at the Mountain Trip Camp after a long night following the ascent. Now comes a long descent. With an early summit, the guys can take their time descending today back to the South Col. Congratulations to all!
After a day of rest at the South Col, our small team is leaving in one short hour for the to!
It’s not the best forecast, with winds of 20-25, but there are reports of only 30-40 people going tonight which allows a lot faster moving up and back. Manoj and the Sherpas are ready, rested, hydrated, and oxygenated. Having a rest day at the col, our third year in a row, really allows for a much more manageable summit day, if the weather cooperates.
The forecast has slowly been shifting, showing higher winds on the 22d and the 23rd than originally forecast. Its also showing what our weather forcasting service calls, “massive cloud development” with moderate to heavy precipitation for the 25th. Reports from the South Col at 6.30pm tonight say there is only a light wind. We will be following the team closely here all night, although there is a large radio black-out zone going up below the Balcony, so no news is good news till they arrive near the South Summit at sunrise. I will post updates as we receive them.
I have just been talking with the guys at Camp 4 and they are saying the winds are blowing a steady 20+ with gust to well over 30. We have decided to put things are on hold for tonight. The plan now will be a rest day at the South Col. We have been doing this the last couple years for more options with picking the best summit day. Everyone is doing well and now have 24 hrs. to rest, recover and get ready for tomorrow!
On the way!
All our team is now in Camp 4 resting and getting ready for tonight. The weather is really quite good, probably nicer than in Base Camp, where it is snowing and sleeting this afternoon. We have 3 Sherpas supporting Manoj Vora for his summit go this evening. There were quite a few people going up the fixed lines to high camp today which made for some slow going. We will be updating reports tonight, Nepal time!
Hi All, here is a quick update: our team is moving up to Camp 4 today.
Summit teams are reporting very cold and windy conditions up higher, but below the South Col conditions are good. The forecast is looking very good and anticipate a summit go on the 21st, later tonight Nepal time. Manoj is feeling good and is traveling with 4 Sherpas. I will post an update after they arrive in the Camp 4.
Manoj called in after a big day, moving up to Camp 3 at about 24,000′. The weather was very cooperative today and, despite a bit of a busy day on the fixed lines up the Lhotse Face, he is in position for moving up to the South Col tomorrow for a summit bid on the 21st!
Best of luck up there and we’re all watching the forecast closely, keeping our fingers crossed that it holds true and that Manoj has a shot at standing on top of the world in the next couple of days.
Good news today! Manoj and our Sherpas are in Camp 3 at close to 24,000 ft.
Everything is going well! The team is enjoying great weather, a good forecast and their plans are set for a move on up to the South Col tomorrow.
60 some people summitted today in good conditions, making it the biggest summit day this year so far. The next several days will see quite a few people going up. It was a bit crowded on the fixed lines below Camp 3 this morning, but otherwise it’s going very well. The plan is to rest, eat, and recover on oxygen for a big day and night tomorrow!
Our team is holding at Camp 2 right now as we watch the developments with the weather. All Sherpas and team member Manoj are in Camp 2 safe and sound, while we are watching the forecasts. There still appears to be a good window from the 21st onwards, although the back end is starting to develop with a large snowfall being predicted by the 24th. These late season snow storms can dump a huge amount of snow, so we are watching that closely.
I’ve attached a couple photos of very windy conditions this morning around 10am. Lots of teams up high today, hoping to hear all good news!
May 18 winds at 10am
Lenticular cloud over the summit
Manoj called in a report today from Camp 2. He climbed up from Everest Base Camp and will spend two nights at Camp 2 before moving up to Camp 3. The forecast is looking pretty good for a summit attempt on the 21st, and that is the goal at present.
Best of luck Manoj!!
It has been a cloudy evening here in Base Camp. After weeks of waiting and getting ready to go, Manoj and DaWang Chu are off to Camp 2 tonight. They are looking at a window of summiting of the 21st and 22nd. Earlier this morning there was some delay with other teams up at the south col, as high winds kept those teams from going much higher than 26,000 ft. We are all fresh from a good rest down at 14,000 ft. in Dingboche and ready to go up. All forecasts continue to confirm good weather starting the 19th. It appears a lot of people are positioned for the 19th summit window, we are all watching. Good Luck to All!
-Scott Woolums, Everest Base Camp
Hello from Dingboche!
We have been down here at 14,000 ft. enjoying the thick air and warmer weather of the wonderful little village of Dingboche. I’ve attached some photos of Taboche Peak above Dingboche and Lhotse in the clouds with a huge wind plume blowing off the summit, which I shot the evening of the 12th.
Now is the difficult time, waiting and watching. So many groups are just about going crazy with impatience. I’m not sure where that’s coming from…
We have another day rest here before we will head back up to Base Camp, so we are on schedule, just as we had planned quite awhile ago. We are hoping some groups take advantage of a small dip in the intensity of the tropical jet stream winds on the 18th and 19th, as that will mean somewhat less climbers heading to the top during our summit window.
It also good news this arm of the jet stream will slowly be moving away over the next couple days. We still see very high winds until the 21st. While this is interesting, there is no surprise, as this is a normal pattern of very short, sharp, cold, windy pre-May 20th weather windows. In the nine seasons I have been coming to Everest, this has been the normal pattern.
So we are resting and feel that when a window presents, we’ll be ready to go. We are planning to move back to base camp to be in position if forecast models change in the next couple days. Next update from base camp!
-Scott Woolums, Dingboche Village, Mountain Trip Everest Expedition
Tabouche Peak 1
Lhotse in the clouds 1
Our Island Peak team was delayed by weather at the dirt airstrip in Lukla. The inclement weather, combined with the peak of the pre monsoon tourist season, resulted in almost a thousand people waiting to fly. Our guys got a bit creative and hiked a short ways down valley to get below the clouds and called for a helicopter pick up.
They ate at a nice restaurant last night and are all happy and excited to be back in the big city.
Joe will post a recap and an update shortly.