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Jamie McGuinness sets the ghost of Cho Oyu summit straight
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Oct 7, 2004 16: 18 EST
Published Oct 1 2004

In certain conditions, a mountain like Everest starts to project itself in the sky. A giant, spooky shadow of the mountain rises above it. A climber standing on the summit at that moment, will project on the horizon, together with his mountain. Climbers call it the mountain ghost.

Check out the incredible Mountain Ghost shot of Cho Oyu's summit last night! And with Tormod's sky ski descent (check sep story today) - what a great ending of the Turquoise Goddess 50th annniversary!

The shadow in the picture is no other than Jamie McGuinness of project Himalaya, and here's his report, about his climb and true summit of Cho Oyu:

I measured the double summit bump

"I arrived just on sunrise to a cold but a fantastic panorama. I wanted to measure by GPS the various points you can see Everest but it was too cold and the snow tiresome off trail. I measured the double summit bump though, both 8203m at eye level with 50 readings, a full 12 satellites visible, horizontal error of +-5 metres.

You can't quite see the Gokyo lakes, but the summit is obvious

I was wrong - from the summit you can't quite see the Gokyo lakes, but the summit is obvious. Although climbers call it the summit plateau, it is on enough of an angle that there is no mistaking the real summit in good weather.

Coming down from the summit at Camp 3 he assisted a Brazilian woman with frostbite:

Woman overnight in C3 without sleeping bag

"I had heard from sherpas the previous day how late she was still heading to the summit and fully expected to find her body on the trail. Luckily she had made it to camp 3 and as I approached held out her frostbitten fingers, dark but not yet swollen. She told me she hadn't taken off her boots. I am not even sure she had a mat to sleep on in her down suit.

She didn't have a sleeping bag." The Germans below were packing without regard. I packed her tent and called ABC, they took our radio over to her camp and one of the sherpas said he was on his way up, and met her at the serac, assisting her down."

This was Jamie McGuinness's fifth time summitting Cho Oyu.Go to his website (links section) to check out more of his images from the climb.

Although Jamie guides commercial groups he summitted Everest (from the north) working as a load-carrying sherpa! "I also run wild exploratory treks very different from what other companies run." Next year he will be working with DCXP for 8000m expeditions.

Project Himalaya is Jamie McGuinness (NZ), Joel Schone and Kim Bannister. Specialties are teahouse trekking in the Everest region (with a peak climb or two), Kangchenjunga region treks, trek-climbs and exploration, climbing trips in the Annapurna region, real exploratory treks and exploratory 6000m peak climbs, Tibet trips, especially Kailash and Lhasa-Everest BC-Kathmandu overland, Zanskar and Ladakh treks and trek-climbs and exploration, Peak climbs of Cho Oyu 8201m and Shishapangma 8027m. The outfit runs around 10-12 trips each year.

Images of Cho Oyu mountain ghost, courtesy of Jamie McGuinness.
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