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TURN AROUND Everest Snowboarders Push Thwarted
16:52 p.m. EDT Aug 29, 2003
Eric just called in an update (04.00PM EST):

"It's 2.00 AM here (local time). Stephen has turned around unfortunately, due to localized snowfalls and not favorable snow conditions...produced a lot of drift...and unfortunate conditions. So they are on their way home and we will update you when we are back on the route in a couple of days."

The climbers faced very wet conditions at the glacier. This is common for the Monsoon season but some years are better than other. Stephen said earlier that a second attempt would pose no problem as the permit is good for September 15 and in addition, next week is a full moon. The expedition will probably recoup and head back up in a few days.

Stephen Koch aims to snowboard the Seven Summits. With only one left to go – Everest – he chose the hard way; down one of the world’s most famous direct lines, the Hornbein Couloir.

Jimmy Chin plans to climb to the top with Stephen and then ski down. The team also chose their two sherpas, Lakpa Dorje Sherpa and Kami Sherpa for companions on the climb: "Lakpa has summitted 4 times without oxygen and Kami has summitted 2x with oxygen. They are great partners and we are excited to have them along."

Off season, in the Monsoon, there are no fixed ropes, no camps and no O2. Stephen, Jimmy and Eric are friends from Wyoming. The expedition uses Contact 2.0 software to provide Web updates.

Image courtesy of Everest Snowboarders.

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