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 Everest 2009: Manuel A. Pizarro: the summit!

Everest day by day

May 21, 2009 -  Manuel attained the summit last night around 10:15 pm !!!!! He communicated with his family and friends that had mustered themselves to await his telephone call from the summit of the world!

Near the summit !!!

May 20, 2009 -  The time has come, Manny is pushing for the summit tonight and he estimates to be there between 8-9 pm. He add, if you can make it, please make a prayer for me and the 3 others (2 sherpas and Jaime) that are all summiting together.

Camp 2...continued

May 20, 2009 -  Manny just phoned in again from Camp 2. He is there with a climber from Ecuador by the name of Jairo. He plans to head for Camp 3 tomorrow hoping to reach the summit on May 22nd 2009.

Camp 2

May 19, 2009 -  Manny phoned in this morning, says that everything is going well. He has already reached Camp 2 and intends to move towards Camp 3 tomorrow. His phone calls are now limited to 30 seconds as he wants to save his battery for making phone calls from the summit. We are all anxiously awaiting Manny's call live from the top of the world!

I'm crossing my fingers and my toes !!

May 18, 2009 -  The weather has finally calmed down and Manny has decided to climb back up to Camps 1-2-3 and attempt the summit bid for May 20th Montreal time late in the evening (or China time early morning on the 21 of May) With favorable weather Manny should be able to attack the summit with conviction, but mother nature forecast a snow fall or probable storm that could interrupt the summit attempt for this season. Our climber is confident and hopeful that he will miss the storm, summit and come home very soon.

Earlier: Wow. ..wow...wow the Everest in all its splendor!!! 

April 25, 2009 First, they are delighted to inform you that because of the olympics of 2008, the roads of Kodari to Tingri were in a lot better conditions than in 2007.  70% of the roads are newly paved and, after the city of Jangmu they were able to roll in good pace.  Therefore, they have arrived at the base camp more quickly. 

But, as everything in life, what is good also can be bad, and what is bad can finally have positive consequences.  The fact that they crossed the valleys and mountings more quickly, it also says that they climbed to 11,000 feet in a little less than 72 hours.  It is necessary to remember that the ascension time of the south side requires more than 14 days to attain this altitude.  Fortunately, their bodies are still semi acclimated.  They met other mountaineers that literally were crushed by the altitude and they had to go back down until their departure point to Kodari.  Manuel and André are left breathless, but they can hold. 

Here are some photos of the jeeps and the base camp.  Currently, the devices charged by the solar energy are at their lowest level, the guys will take care of the refill and will send another message with more photos Tuesday.  

On the roads to Tibet!

April 24, 2009, Manuel and André are currently on the road heading towards the base camp of the north side.  They will arrive probably Monday.  Nevertheless, if the jeeps have no mechanical problems or flat tires, they will arrive maybe tomorrow evening.  They are at 120 km of the basic camp, but their speed is at 20 km per hour. 

Everest day by day

On the way to the North side's base camp

April 22, 2009.  Hello to the gang of the Quebec Lung Association, our families and friends. ..!

It is the big official departure!  Tomorrow, our friends will take the way to the city of Kodari.  They will cross the "friendship bridge" built several years ago by China and Nepal.  This bridge is at about 20 meters above a turbulent river originated from the Himalayan mountains.

They then must land all their equipment off the truck and cross it on foot.  They have more than 500 kilos of equipment.  Next, on the other side of the bridge, their Tibetan contacts will load again the trucks and the jeeps.  The bridge is to be crossed only on foot, for the Nepalese vehicles are not authorized to circulate into China.

Next, they will go to the city of Jangmu where they will pass a night.  They will be at more than 10 000 feet of altitude.  The next day, they will follow a sinuous road of beaten earth into the mountains during at least 80 kilometers, which will bring them to the small city of Nyalam, situated at 13, 000 feet, where they  will stay for one or two nights.  They will do another day of 6 hours in Jeep.  They will go until an even smaller city called Tingri.  The Tibetans say that the Gods dropped a pin and, that the city was named "ting-ri" because that represents the sound the pin did when it fell on the ground. 

Manuel and André will be at the North base camp, Tuesday April 28...  Manuel adds to his message:  "A big thanks to the Quebec Lung Association and to our sponsors for their undeniable support.  Another big hello too, to all the students of John XXIII secondary school; the school where I did my secondary studies.  I celebrate, this year, my 20th year of graduating".

"Aim higher, John XXIII"

Earlier: The arrival of our two climbers to Katmandu was very calm.  After obtaining their visa for Nepal, their friend Samden welcomed them at the airport and brought them to their hotel, the Yak & Yeti.  He presented them the Nepalese scarf, the Kata, in sign of friendship and welcoming.  Arriving at the hotel, they met the president of Sri Lanka that was on the spot.  For reasons of security, the photos were forbidden.  Finally, they slept 14 hours due to the jet lag. 

Today, March 4, our two climbers began their logistics such as to find the oxygen regulators and their oxygen bottles.  Manuel noticed that all is more expensive than at the time of his first expedition in 2007.  The government increased prices and taxes on most of the products and services.  For example, the cost of the visa to enter the country was $30.00 US in 2007 for 90 days.  Now, it is $100.00 US for 90 days.

At the end, here is a message from André and of Manuel:
"We thank all of our sponsors.  Without them, this trip would have been impossible.  Thanks to our families who backed and encouraged us.  We will be very careful, we promise you.  We equally thank all those who wrote us messages of encouragement from British Colombia to Montreal.  Thanks a lot! 

Manuel and André

L'Everest au jour le jour
Photos des alpinistes à l’aéroport

The big departure: After a year in preparation, an intensive search for sponsors, hundreds of e-mails, of calls and a lot of stress, here at last our climbers in the airplane on road towards Katmandu in Nepal.  The airplane left Montreal at 7:45 pm on Sunday, March 1, towards a first landing in London, England.

As soon as they land, they will transfer planes to another stop in Doha.  They will set off again towards Katmandu in Nepal where they will rest for a few days and also for some logistics before the big departure: the beginning of the ascension of the Everest. 

Background: Manuel A. Pizarro was at the top of Mount Everest, May 16, 2007, and now he is returning again!

The Quebec Lung Association is honoured to be the organization selected by Mssrs. Manuel A. Pizarro and André S. Rossin-Arthiat to be a part of their ambitious project involving the ascent of Mount Everest.

By doing so, the two climbers wish to honour the memory of Mr. Rossin-Arthiat’s father-in-law who died at the beginning of last summer, as a result of two respiratory diseases: emphysema and asbestosis.They also want to support research into children’s asthma as the number of young asthma sufferers has tripled in Quebec since 1980.

The Quebec Lung Association, for its part, is a leader and one of the most respected organizations in terms of scientific information, research, education, support and advocation dealing with pulmonary health issues. Furthermore, we now add to our cause any environmental element that is detrimental to respiratory health, whether it be wood heating, radon, Ambrosia (ragweed), engines that are left running while vehicles are parked, etc.…


  1. Raise money for the Quebec Lung Association, to help asthmatic children and people with COPD (emphysema and chronic bronchitis).
  2. Perform medical and pulmonary tests throughout the ascent. As a result, two books will be written: one on “High-altitude medicine on Mount Everest”, while the second will have a more spiritual and philosophical theme. A documentary film will also be produced.
  3. Give both climbers an opportunity to exceed their personal limits. By doing so, they will pave the way for young people, by showing them that they can have faith in their dreams.

Respiratory diseases to which the money raised will be allocated:


In Canada, 485,700 young people between the ages of 4 and 11 are asthmatics. Do you realize that this represents 15.6% of that age group in Canada? Meanwhile, according to Canada’s latest census, the number of asthmatics over the age of 12 is estimated to be over 3,000,000 and their number just keeps growing!

Since 1980, the number of asthmatics in Quebec has tripled . We now have more than 300,000 children and adolescents who are very anxious when summer approaches, as are their parents for that matter. For asthmatics, summer is the season when the combination of smog, pollen, ragweed, wood fires and humidity often makes breathing or practicing sports more difficult.

Furthermore, each year in Quebec, asthma is responsible for:

  • 760,000 medical visits;
  • 100,000 E.R. visits;
  • 56,000 hospitalization days;
  • 325,000 lost work days;
  • 4,000 ambulance service calls;
  • and 255 too many deaths!

Quebec’s annual bill amounts to $150 million


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis, is constantly on the rise given the number of baby-boomers who reach a more advanced age, as its symptoms do not generally appear before the age of 55.

In 2005, 1,531,800 Canadians suffered from COPD. However, according to research results, as many as 3 million Canadians might have this disease. Furthermore, it is ranked fourth as a leading cause of death in Canada. It is estimated that COPD claims one life every hour.

In Quebec, there are 386,000 people diagnosed with COPD, not even including those whose symptoms have not been detected. Quebec and the Atlantic provinces sadly boast the highest COPD-related mortality rates. Based on a calculation of COPD health costs, in 2001 direct annual costs amounted to almost $2,000 per patient. Recalculated today, COPD would cost us $772 million a year.

COPD evolves slowly over a certain number of years. As the disease intensifies, greater shortness of breath hampers activity and reduces quality of life.

Repeated respiratory infections and exposure to second-hand smoke during childhood lead to diminished respiratory function, which may cause a predisposition to COPD. What’s more, a genetic deficiency at the lung tissue level is also linked to a greater risk of COPD.

Causes of death among asthmatics and people with COPD:

Did you know that the symptoms exhibited by people with asthma and COPD or any other lung disease (especially our children and people over the age of 55) are exacerbated by air pollution to the point where they can cause premature death?

Did you know that in 2008, the effects of air pollution will claim the lives of 21,000 Canadians? In 2031, close to 90,000 people will have died of pollution-related problems, while the number of deaths due to long-term exposure will have climbed to 710,000.

Did you know that Quebec and Ontario report the largest proportion of premature deaths caused by severe air pollution (approximately 70%) and yet only 62% of Canadians live in Central Canada ?

Did you know that forecasts claim that the number of premature deaths associated with chronic exposure to air pollution will increase by 83% between 2008 and 2031 ?

Did you know that in 2008, the economic cost of air pollution will climb to 10 billion dollars and may soar up to 300 billion in 2031 ?

Source : Canadian Medical Association

We believe in it…

As you can see, there is a direct link between the ascent of Mount Everest and the Quebec Lung Association. This link is air, the air that we breathe, that is a source of life! We are deeply committed to this project, for we share the same ideals. We believe in it and support Mssrs. Pizarro and Rossin-Arthiat in their fabulous adventure. We have faith in their ability to fulfil this dream, one that we all share, reaching our own peak in the best of worlds !

Much more soon!

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