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Russians fire Sherpas
10:52 a.m. EDT May 2, 2003
The Russian Adventure team has run into some problems with their Sherpas. Previously they refused to go up from the North Col, 7000m, and the Russian climbers camped above had to descend. Now the Sherpas refused to carry 18kg and insisted on only carrying 11kg. The pre-arranged agreement was for up to 20 kg to the North Col, 7000m. Expedition leader, Alexander Abramov reports, "During the whole month the sherpas worked only five days at 7000m."

The expedition has since fired the Sherpas and they are heading back down to Kathmandu. The team has decided to go ahead and set Camp II, 7900m, themselves.

Alexander Abramov reports:

"April 30. I like Sherpas and Nepal very much. But very likely I will become racist soon. We were planning the third ascent to the North Col. I gave the sherpas oxygen cylinders, 18kg (five oxygen cylinders) per man. It was an agreement that they should carry the load of 20kg to the North Col but suddenly sherpas began to shake their heads. They did not want to carry 18kg per man only 11kg (three oxygen cylinders). It exasperated not only me but also another members of our expeditions. It was the matter of principle either the sherpas would work or go back to Katmandu.

Probably I indulged them paying bonuses every week. Usually bonuses are paid at the end of the expedition.

I would like to report the names of "bad" sherpas: Dzankby, Torgeeken, and Tshuldim. If you do not want to have problems during your expedition never take these sherpas. During the whole month the sherpas worked only five days at 7000m and asserted that the given work was beyond their strength. As a result they left the expedition and went back to Katmandu.

We connected with the firm Asian Trekking and they promised to provide us with following information next day: either to return money at about $3000 per sherpa or send another. As to the defaulters, the firm promised to leave them without salary.

And now without sherpas we decided to install the camp 7900m by own strength.

This expedition is part of a new project called the, "Russian Adventure Team." Their goal is to climb the seven summits of the seven continents - The first peak climbed was Mt. Elbrus this past January 8th and then Kilimanjaro. After Everest, they will head to Carstensz Pyramid.

Image courtesy of Mountain.ru

Alexander's dispatch translated and forwarded by our friends as Mountain.ru

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