8000 Meters Facts
Everest 2005: Gavin Bate:
Gavin back at Namche!
File photo Everest on a better day ©EverestNews.com
Gavin back at Namche! Gavin has
just called in! I must say we were biting our nails for a bit there! Believe
it or not he is now in Namche Bazaar - 3440m!
Following his last update from Camp 2 he spent a night there and decided to
get off the mountain and down as fast as possible. He cleared his one and only
camp and carried 35kg down in bad weather. He reports the Ice fall was as bad
as he has ever seen it.
The ice fall is the bottom section of the mountain which is a frozen, moving,
seemingly alive river. It continually moves and creaks and cracks. There are
huge crevasses and voids which are crossed on aluminum ladders lashed together
- sometimes 4 or 5 ladders long. One of these crossings Gavin reports was
massive at 45m with only six inches of ladder each side holding it in place.
He admits it took a few attempts before making it all the way over!
Gavin then got into base camp and kept heading straight down to Gorak Shep,
his own base camp and the original base camp in 1953. He then stayed for one
night and today sped down the valley through Lobuche, Pheriche, Dubouche,
Tengboche arriving half an hour ago in Namche!
Considering where he has been until now it is quite unbelievable that he has
already made it that far down. He has been trying to leave messages on the
audio blogger but seemingly it is under maintenance at the minute. So as soon
as it's up and running we'll here from Gav.
There is a lot of chat amongst the Sherpa's that he has met over his tactics
on the mountain. He really has flipped the 'normal' method on it's head by
having one base camp at Gorak Shep and one camp on the mountain at camp 2. To
their knowledge this approach has not been done before and has obviously
proved successful. Saying that a large team could not handle this but with
Gavin's light weight approach and flexibility and the fact that he was not
using oxygen and not having to load camps with bottles it worked very well.
Gavin hopes to meet up with Andy and Helena and all the Adventure Alternative
team in the village tomorrow to see the projects which Moving Mountains has
As soon as I get some more news we'll get it posted!
Best Regards, Chris
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