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Jagged Globe, Fiennes and Sibu: Summit push tonight!
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Jun 2, 2005 12: 07 EST
The Jagged Globe Everest North Ridge expedition continues to battle it's way towards the summit and are going for it tonight. A few hours back, they reported no wind at their 8400 m camp.

Early this morning, Ranulph Fiennes was at Camp 3 (7,900m), hoping to start his climb to Camp 4 (8,400m) in a few hours. Here's an update from the team on the last 24 hours:

"David, Tore, Fred, Sibu and Alex spent two nights in Camp 3 being battered by atrocious winds. David (Hamilton) described last night as 'the worst night I have ever spent in a tent'. Two out of three of the tents in Camp 3 were broken by the wind. So they got out of there and started to climb to Camp 4 at 8,400m.

Unfortunately, some way between C3 and C4, Fred Ziel did not feel well and decided to turn round. Fred has descended to ABC with Phurbua Sherpa and is being looked after at ABC. Speaking to Tore a few moments ago, Tore said "We are having a jolly good time here, brewing up, talking and enjoying ourselves."

No wind this morning

There was no sound of tents flapping and they were feeling really good and confident about trying to reach the summit tomorrow at around 7 a.m. Three Sherpas are also with them.

So, the second half the team (Ian, Neal, Ran (Fiennes), Mark, Jens) are currently in the remnants of camp 3 (7,900m) alongside Russell Brice's team. There was some confusion about Ran descending. We think this was due to him leaving the North Col early to get to Camp 2 when it was really windy on 1 June.

David made the call for the second group not to ascend to camp 2 (7,500m), but it seems that later they did, hence the report on the website yesterday that the first group were stuck in Camp 3, but the second group had managed to move to camp 2.

We think that all members of that second group are now in Camp 3 - David spoke to Ian Parnell via radio earlier - Ian's in a tent with Ran and Neal.

Oxygen in camp 4

Because David and the first group were stuck in C3 for 2 nights due to the high winds, they depleted a lot of the gas and oxygen in C3, but the guys there now are working together with Russell's climbers to make the best of what is not going to be a comfortable place to be.

If they can make it to camp 4, they should be in a much better position tomorrow. There is plenty of oxygen and gas at camp 4, and the tents are much more sheltered from the wind up there.

At the moment, the best forecast is from the 3rd June, so it looks promising for the 2nd team in terms of the weather outlook. That's all for now. "

Jagged Globe is running 2 guided, full service expeditions to both sides of Everest this year. Among the North side team-members is South African Sibusiso Vilane. Sibusiso became a celebrity in 2003, as the first Black African to reach Mount Everest. Not all were happy for him though, some locals burned his house down! Vilane is climbing Everest from the other side this year.

Along with Vilane, the team hosts another pretty famous member: Ranulph Fiennes. Knighted by the Queen of England, Fiennes is a well know figure in the Polar adventure world. 60 years old, he suffered a heart attack two years ago and lost his wife to cancer last year. Everest is being no doubt a great challenge, as well as a first experience at high altitude.

The seven-member North side group is led by David Hamilton (Glasgow, 1961). David has been leading high altitude expeditions to the Himalayas every year since 1987, including 8 8000m expeditions. He summited Everest in 2003.

Image of Ran Fiennes, courtesy of Jagged Globe.

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