Saturday, May 5, 2012

Team returns from 2nd rotation

We just returned this afternoon from our 2nd rotation on Mt. Everest.  Our 5 nights spent above base camp helped us acclimatize, as well as gain important practice climbing on the Lhotse Face.  The climbing above Camp 2 has been unusual in that the Lhotse Face has been much drier than in previous seasons, this means that the hard ice is not covered by snow, making climbing more difficult, and increasing the danger of rock fall.  Several climbers from other teams had been injured by rock fall in the preceding days on this section of the route, and this hazard we were not willing to accept.  Our team along with help from two other teams fixed a new line up the Lhotse Face to Camp 3 that avoided this rock fall hazard.  We then climbed this route on our acclimatization trip.  We now plan to drop back down the valley to rest and recover from this last trip up to Camp 3.  During this time we are strategizing how we will fix the route to the South Col high camp, then to the summit.  Everyone is doing well!
Photos: The climbing team at Camp 2 in our Down Suits.  Climbers on our new route up the Lhotse Face to Camp 3.