Thursday, May 18, 2017

On track--resting at Camp 2!

We heard from Anders this morning, at what was about dinner time in Nepal on Thursday 5/18.

They had a successful trip once again through the Ice Fall (7th transit).  They left at 2:15am local time and it took them just 5 hours or so to make it through the Ice Fall--which is very fast.  Anders said they had ideal weather.  Further, he said the Ice Fall had changed quite a bit from the last time they went through it.  It seemed more stable and avoided one area of potential rock fall--he pronounced it as "much safer and more stable" now.

When they advanced up into the Western Cwm, he said they ran into quite a bit more crowding and borderline, unbearable heat (from the reflected sun).  Anders said it felt like it was above 100 degrees and they had to wait a bit in a bunch of sections.  Anders does not do particularly well in the heat (a Christofferson trait) but they stayed on it and arrived at Camp 2 without incident, a little after 10--Base Camp to Camp 2 in 8 hours, which is their fastest trip so far and speaks to their team's fitness and acclimatization.

Anders spent the next 6 hours focused on resting and hydration and was in good shape and spirits when Judy talked to him this morning, our time.  The immediate plan was to get some dinner.  Tomorrow, they plan to wait until a bit later in the day and then head up to C3--hoping to by-pass any crowding on the Lhotse Face.  Anders says that they can see a lot of folks up at Camp 3 (we believe a large Chinese team is there).  He says there are still quite a few folks back at Base Camp and further that the majority of teams who reached C2 today would probably take a rest day tomorrow at C2.  with their plan, they hope to be in between two larger groups--hopefully this will play our for them, but many factors could impact that plan, the weather being at the top of the list--so we'll see.

As far as the weather goes, Anders reported calm winds at C2 but they could see wind up closer to the summit of Lhotse, which is consistent with the recent forecasts.  How this effects teams currently at C3/C4 is hard to predict--but it could delay them.

In any event, they are still on track to reach C3 tomorrow, the 19th (should be early on the 19th on the East Coast).  Move to C4 at the South Col on their 20th (probably late the 19th and early the 20th over here) and then go for the Summit at some point late on the 20th/early on the 21st.  They'd currently like to be on the Summit, early on the morning of the 21st (late the 20th our time).

More news as we hear it....

All good for now!

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