61st day, Exp. cellebrating 10 years of Brazil at Everest
(5400m) - Not this time.
friends, today the report is written by Irivan, my dear friend
in Everest climbing. Hugs, Waldemar.)
to our comfortable tents at base camp.
last 3 days we explored the upper mountain, which was very
for the development of our climbing plan. The days we went up to camp 2 and,
later, camp 3 were very nice. After several days confined at basecamp, nothing
can be better than going up, in close contact with the mountain.
Spaniard friends gave up their climbing plan at the last minute and we decided
to keep going, because there seemed to be a window, the mountain would give us
a break, and luckily we would be able to climb.
morning of the 20th, we both woke up feeling bad. The day seemed ok, with
little wind, but during breakfast I threw up, which was not good. We spent
considerable time analyzing the weather report we had with us and the
situation outside our tent. The night was cold, -22C, and the tent was fully
frozen inside. We felt it was snowing inside our tent at any move we made.
a few hours discussing the pros and cons, with time passing by, we decided it
was not appropriate to keep climbing. When we left the tent, we noticed that
half of the climbers from other expeditions that were previously attempting
summit were coming down. Right decision?? Hard to tell at that time, but I
know that for the summit push it is wise to go together.
were in our way down under snow and cold wind. We stopped at camp 2 to leave
some items and proceeded to basecamp. Since we're not going up, the best is to
go down as fast as possible.
On the way
from camp 2 to basecamp, we almost froze under snow and wind. When we arrived
at basecamp the bad weather was gone and the sky opened up a little. We were
nicely greeted by Haya in the beginning of the glacier.
Late in the
afternoon the sky became crystal clear as magic, with almost no wind. What
now?? Did we make the wrong decision?
dinner I went to the Korean camp to see how they were doing up in the
mountain. They had arrived very late at camp 4 and decided not to finish the
climb last night. This morning we heard that the Asian Trekking expedition
attempted summit but they stopped at the Balcony (8500m) and turned back down
because of deep snow. One of their climbers is at camp 4 with frostbites.
are feeling relieved with our decision, since we are now ready for a new
attempt in a few days, and the lesson is: we must respect the mountain and all
its power. Blue sky does not always mean good climbing conditions. There is
wind, nature's power, and as Don Juan De Marco said, we have to know how to
avoid it. When snow falls from the South face, it accumulates a lot. The snow
looks like "sugar" which does not compact, it seems like corn starch in which
we easily sink into.
weather conditions get better so we can climb with safety and joy. We heard
news that some people summited by the north side. Here at basecamp the number
of people giving up this year is increasing, and it's common to see the Yaks
packed on the way back. Many people are going back home. We will try up to our
last chance. The window will come. It came every year, so it must come again
this year. Hillary and Tenzing summitted on May 29th...
Big hug for
the main picture Waldemar and our tent at camp 3 (7300m).
picture taken at camp 3 looking up, showing some tents and many climbers
going up to camp 4, but none of them summitted."
from Portuguese by Lucia Andreia.
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