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Everest daily wrap up: Final stage on Everest - teams poised for the summit bid
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May 11, 2004 14: 18 EST
The Russian North Face team has reached the foot of the rock bastion at 7900m. There is 600 meters of vertical rock wall to climb before they can set their last camp. Near another mountain range a Swiss climber was brutally beaten in Kabul. Meanwhile, unrest in Nepal continues, strikes have shut down Kathmandu, aid organizations have pulled out. Everest teams are watching the weather closely, trying to find a window to make their summit bids; some teams will aim for late this weekend into early next week.

Everest Weather

Many teams are recharging in the ‘green zone’; lower altitudes which provide more oxygen saturation. We have entered a period of erratic weather, in which wind speeds are moving up and down on a daily basis. This precedes the weather window later in the month, where the majority of the summits normally occur. It looks like there will be a mini-window later this coming weekend but it is still too early to tell.

Everest North:

The Russian Everest Central North Face team today reached the rock bastion at 7900m. From here up to 8500m the climb is nothing but vertical rock wall. See separate story.

Italian Everest/K2 Today is a day of rest in BC for the team, but Wednesday, if weather improves, they will begin their summit climb. They were visited today by some friends from Tibet; judging by the picture these guys must be the Tibetan Hell's Angels chapter.

Russian Adventure Team. Members of the team have reached as high up as 7800m, sherpas are stocking Camps 2 and 3 with oxygen. They would like to make a summit bid between May 22nd and June 1st.

Dan Lochner discussed with Ang Mingma, his Sherpa, what date would be ideal for their summit bid. “He mentioned that May 15 to May 22 might be good for a summit, depending on weather. He also said that Camp 3 is not ideal for pitching tents, basically consisting of scree rock without much ability to anchor tents. Ang Mingma climbed direct from North Col to Camp 3 in seven hours.”

Everest South:

Mexican Canadian Andres and team just got back to BC from Dingboche.

Irish Everest Pat and Clare are in Dingboche.

Alpine Ascents is in Deboche (3701m).

Adventure Consultants “What’s the old Jimmy Buffet song? Changes in latitude, changes in attitude.... For us it was simply changes in altitude! An early windy start at C2 found us eagerly running for BC under ever improving skies. The joy of coming thru the top of the icefall and seeing BC again, is akin to seeing a palace in the sky! Tomorrow will see us going even lower down valley in search of green grass, more O2, and trying to get rid of nagging coughs from the cold dry air. In other words, our final big rest cycle before our summit push. Other teams are trying to get setup for a summit bid on the 15th. Are we worried we will miss our chance? No way.”

Ed Viesturs is in BC talking to JC. In the states, when someone says their talking to JC they usually mean Jesus Christ; but Ed wasn’t talking to Jusus unless he's got some extraordinary connection on his Thuraya phone. Ed was talking about Jean-Christophe who is climbing Makalu (he has reached 7000+m). “It is nice to talk to JC once in awhile” It sure is Ed…


Jannu North Face Expedition “Ruchkin- Mikhailov climbed one more pitch. They're descending now, then Pershin-Totmjanin will begin to work on the route tomorrow. 8.5 vertical ropes are fixed above 7000 m. The weather seems suspiciously good today, which scares us a bit. Russians are always suspicious when things are too good, expecting it to turn sour any minute. We shall see what tomorrow brings.” Reports Mikhail Bakin.


Argentinean Expedition will be taking advantage of the mini-window; “Everything has been going as planned, with only a one day delay. Today we have begun our climb to the high camps, hoping to arrive at the summit on Wednesday.” Said the team.


British Services Makalu have fixed ropes up to 7100m. Their next obstacle is the “Black Gendarme,” a steep rock pinnacle on the ridge.

In the News:

Aid Organizations pull out of Nepal amongst severe strikes which have shut down Katmandu. 22 Maoist rebels were killed on Monday.

Elie Chevieux was brutally killed in Kabul, Afghanistan. He was a world champion rock-climber and was traveling through the region to take photographs. See separate story.

Russian North Face | Italian Everest/K2 | Russian Adventure team | Dan Lochner | Mexican/Canadian | Irish Everest | Alpine Ascents | Adventure Consultants | Ed Viesturs | Argentinean Dhaulagiri | British Services

Image of Tibetans on motorcycle in North side BC courtesy of montagna.org.
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