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 Alpine Ascents Ama Dablam Nepal (22,493ft/6,865m) Expedition 2005

12/7/05: Hey everybody this is Eric calling you from Kathmandu. We had a long trek out from Tengboche, trekking for a couple of days down the Khumbu Valley. Flew out this afternoon around 2:00, made it into Kathmandu and have been dealing with some logistics and just playing around. We just had a great meal with Gopal and Tsering and Jiban, our trekking agent, and we’re having a good time tonight. It’s been a great expedition and just want to wrap it up saying thanks to the family and friends of our expedition members that supported us and all the people watching the cybercast. Its tough coming into Nepal with small team and tackling a hug Himalayan peak like Ama Dablam. I believe that Mark did an excellent job challenging this climb and I look forward to seeing him on Cho-Oyu in the future. We’re going to wrap it up and say thanks to everybody and we’ll see you next year. A special thanks to Tsering and Gopal, couldn’t do it without you guys, this is the Alpine Ascents 2005 Ama Dablam expedition signing off with the last cybercast of the season.

12/4/05: Hey everybody this is Eric Larson giving you a report, we left Base Camp today and pulled our tent stakes and packed up camp. We are down in Tengboche and we are going to start our trek out of the Khumbu. We had a great expedition on Ama Dablam and Mark definitely had a great experience on such a beautiful mountain. We’re going to be going down to Namche and then to Lukla and hopefully getting out to Kathmandu in the next couple of days. We’ll give you an update if anything exciting happens in the next couple of days, but right now, pretty cold and windy and colder temperatures and weather are scheduled to move in, so I think we ended the expedition at just about the right time. We’ll give you a call from Kathmandu and let you know what’s going on, this is Eric Larson signing off.

12/3/05: Hey everybody it’s Eric and it’s the 3 rd of December. It’s been a long couple of days, but unfortunately we ran into some technical difficulties and we didn’t really get a good opportunity to make the summit. Friday we woke up to some high winds and some lenticular clouds, we decided to pack up camp anyways and start moving up to Camp III from II. When we were in the gray tower area we ran into a summit party that was coming down, a party of 6 and they were going around us, so it took us a while to get through the gray tower, but after that we made it up to the upper gray tower ice gullies. Unfortunately Mark’s cough was getting pretty bad and we decided that was going to be our high point. The rest of the day was spent, another 6 hours spent down climbing and rappelling, and we spent last night at Camp I. This morning we woke up and ended up cleaning the rest of the mountain of tents and all of our climbing equipment and came down to base camp. Unfortunately things like this happen on a big mountain, it’s a high, technical mountain, with a lot of ice climbing and rock climbing, one which requires every skill and effort in preparation and Ama Dablam is a great example of such a mountain. We are going to be resting in base Camp tomorrow and we’ll give you an update of what our trek out is going to be. But unfortunately I have to say that we didn’t have a really good opportunity to summit. Mark’s pretty pleased with what he did get out of the climb, got a lot of good high altitude technical experience and ice climbing and got some good ideas of what a Himalayan expedition is all about. We’ll give you a call tomorrow and let you know what’s going on. Thanks a lot, bye.

12/1/05: Hey everybody, it’s Eric, We arrived at Camp II around 1:20 this afternoon and luckily the weather is holding on a little bit, we have some sunshine and are just resting. We left Camp I around 9:00, so that took about 4 hours, 20 minutes to get to the technical rock section. We’re looking up above our head right now, towards camp III and looking through the ice and rock section that we have to travel through tomorrow. Hopefully, the weather holds up. Clouds are moving in pretty fast right now and the wind is blowing pretty good. So hopefully we get a good next couple of days and we can go for it. If we wake up with bad weather tomorrow, we’ll probably just hang out here at camp II, but most likely we’ll move to III and we’ll give you an update from Camp III. But everybody is doing really well and feeling good and psyched to be at Camp II, we’re almost over, so keep watching the cybercast and we’ll keep adding to it.

11/30/05: Hey everybody this is Eric larson giving you a call on Wednesday 11/30. It's the last day of November, moving into the winter season up here. We've had some good wind and it's starting to die down a little bit and we've moved actually from Base Camp up to Camp I about an hour and a half ago. Enjoying the last minutes of sunshine right now at Camp I. Took our time walking up, didn't want to wear ourselves out at all, so it was about a 5 hour hike up the wand and just sitting around enjoying some hot drinks right now, hopefully the weather will cooperate in the next couple of days and we will get a good summit chance. For us tomorrow, we're going to move from I to Camp II, about 700 vertical feet, but along a technical ridge, so it should take us about 4-5 hours to get there. We'll give you an update tomorrow on what's going on, but both Mark and myself are certainly doing well. Mark has a small Khumbu cough starting, but we should be able to manage that and hopefully it won't get any worse. Stay tuned to our cybercast, we'll be doing it daily going up the mountain now, bye for now.

11/28/05: Hey everybody this is Eric giving you a call from Ama Dablam’s Base Camp. Today is Monday the 28 th and we’re just getting ready to nosh the huge dinner that Gopal is going to fix. The past couple of days we’ve been hanging out acclimatizing up at Camp I, both myself Mark and Tsering. Did a lot of resting and climbing up there. The fixed lines are placed well and it looks like most of the route is dry this year. We’re going to have two nights of rest here in base camp and then Wednesday, the 30 th, go up and get ready to start our summit push. So hopefully we get a weather window that allows us to go higher. This is Eric larson signing off.

11/24/2005: Hey everybody this is Eric larson calling from Base Camp, Ama Dablam, 2005. Today is the 24 th of November, Happy Thanksgiving everybody! Let’s see, to catch you up with what’s been going on, today we went for an acclimatization hike up to Camp I and carried a small load, spent most of the day doing that, and I think that Mark and I are getting used to the altitude pretty well. It was a long day but we are back in a comfortable base camp and looking forward to a good meal. Past couple of days: Yesterday we did a bunch of skills, including rappelling and jumaring and got that covered before we really go on the fixed lines. Day before that, we had our Puja and Tsering, our Sherpa, is actually also a lama, and he was the one who guided us through the Puja. We are going to rest tomorrow and the next day go on up to Camp I for a couple of nights and sleep. We’ll give you a call after we’ve completed that and tell you how it went. Thanks for watching the cybercast, this is Eric Larson signing off.

11/21/2005: Hey everybody, it’s the 2005 Ama Dablam expedition giving you a call on Monday the 21st. We just arrived at Base Camp and the weather is looking really good. Gopal and Tsering did a really great job putting camp up, the past two days and we walked into a nice warm lunch and large smiles. To catch you up on the past couple of days, we arrived at Tengboche last Saturday and that afternoon had an audience with the Lama Geshe and he gave us a blessing and a postcard to bring up to the summit with us and we’re supposed to actually open it up and show it to the mountain and it is covered with Tibetan writing that asks the mountain permission to climb, pretty cool.

Yesterday we did an acclimatization hike up to Pheriche, we visited the Himalayan Rescue Association Clinic and then had lunch in Dingboche and came back down, late afternoon. This morning we woke up and watched runners participating in the Everest marathon, running down from Base Camp to Namche and those guys would be traveling over 25 miles in less than 4 hours. Pretty incredible. Everybody is doing really well here, Mark and I seem to be acclimatizing pretty well and the weather is holding up pretty good, a little bit of weather yesterday and some teams did have some difficulty with the summit.

Hopefully, we get a good weather break in the next couple of weeks and have a warm summit day. Until then we’ll give you a call in the next couple of days and tell you how we’ve been doing. Tomorrow we get to look forward to having our Puja ceremony and the next day we’ll do some skills and carry up to Camp I. Keep watching to find out what’s next, until then this is Eric Larson signing off.

11/18/2005: Hey everybody this is Eric Larson calling you on Friday the 18th, Sorry we’ve had some technical difficulties, but we’ve worked them out. Mark and I are both down in Deboche, we packed up our yaks, 9 yaks, and Tsering and Gopal helped move our loads up through Tengboche and everybody is doing pretty good and hopefully we won’t catch any colds before we get to base camp, which would make the acclimatization process harder. We’ll be going to Dingboche tomorrow and we’ll spend two days there and then we’ll head up to base camp. Before we head up to base camp we’ll look for an audience with Lama Geshe and do some acclimatization hikes up to Pheriche and over that way. We’ll give you a call in a couple of days and how base camp is looking and what the weather is doing. Thanks for watching he cybercast, this is Eric Larson with the 2005 Ama Dablam cybercast, signing off.

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