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Not enough O2's for Charlie
16:24 p.m. EDT Apr 29, 2003
Charlie Wittmack has become frustrated with recent developments in his expedition. For his group's summit push there will not be enough room for Charlie and his climbing partner Chris to sleep together in Camp IV, 7900m, the last camp before the final summit bid. The group's Sirdar has asked them to split up and go for the summit on different days. Also, it is likely that Charlie will not have oxygen for above Camp III, as he initially planned and paid extra for.

Several members of the group who originally decided to climb without oxygen have since changed their minds. There is enough oxygen for all, only if it is used above Camp IV, 7900m. Charlie writes about not having the extra oxygen for below Camp IV, "is a bit more risk than I wanted, and I am irritated with everyone, although the blame is difficult to assign."

All members of the group included those wanting to go without oxygen paid full price, which included oxygen. Charlie paid extra for an additional two O2 bottles. Now the climbers who planned to go without oxygen want it available to them, and expect to have it available since they paid for it. This means that there is not enough for Charlie to have his extra oxygen from Camp III.

Charlie and several other climbers are in a loosely knit group of "independent free climbers" who opted to forgo a commercial expedition and instead work directly with the same trekking agency to arrange for climbing Sherpas, logistics, oxygen, and the sharing of some resources.


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