Everest Weather Reports for Spring 2006
Current summit weather on Mount Everest 8,850 M (29,035 feet)
5/26/06 - Winds at 20 to 30 knots from the west and temperatures at -21C. Snow at times
5/25/06 - Winds at 20 to 30 knots from the west and temperatures at -21C. Snow showers at times
5/23/06 - Winds at 20 to 30 knots from the west and temperatures at -22C. Clear skies
5/22/06 - Winds at 10 to 30 knots from the northwest. and temperatures at -22C. Clear skies
5/20/06 - Winds at 20 to 40 knots from the northwest. and temperatures at -27C. Clear skies
5/19/06 - Winds at 20 to 45 knots from the northwest. and temperatures at -27C
5/18/06 - Winds at 40 knots from the northwest. and temperatures at -28C. Snow heavy at times
5/16/06 -Winds at 36 knots at variable directions, and temperatures at -28C. Clear early in the day
5/15/06 - Winds at 40 knots and variable direction, and temperatures at -28C
5/14/06 - Winds at 45 knots from the west and temperatures at -27C Mostly sunny early in the day
Dispatch from Mountain Link - May 24, 2006
Team is in Kathmandu and leaving for Bangkok tomorrow. They will be going their separate ways to arrive back in the states. This is the end of the updates. The team really appreciates all the support and interest you have had during this expedition. — Mountain Link Team
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 24 - 1:00am PST (1:45pm Nepal Time) All Climbers Safely Down to the Col
Ang Jangbu reports that Dan and Jim are safely back on the south col. Paul and Fiona are back to Camp 2. Dave and Dennis are at base camp. Justin left BC this morning. The current plan is to finish bringing down the whole south col and Camp 3 tomorrow (25 May), Camp 2 down to 1 on 26 May. Clear off all camps by 27 May. Order yaks to arrive BC on 28th and head out on 29th with a heli charter out of Syangboche on 31 May or 1st June. We'll keep you posted! — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch International Mountain Guides - May 23 - 4:15am PST (5pm Nepal Time)
Yesterday's Climbers All Down Safe; Today's Getting Ready to Go Up
Ang Jangbu reports from Base Camp that Dave, Dennis, Phinjo and Ang Karma came down to 2 this afternoon. Fiona is staying at camp 4 tonight. Sherpas on South Col tonight are: Dasona, Mingma Ongel, Tashi Dorje, Tashi Tshering, Pemba Dorje, Cheppi, Passang Rinjing, and Ang Namgya. As of now Paul is going to go back up tonight and try again. We have assigned Tashi Dorje to climb with him. Tashi Tshering is climbing with Dan. Pemba Dorje is climbing with Jim. Cheppi is carrying Dan's extra bottle and will continue to the summit. They plan to leave South Col at about 9 or so. Mingma Ongel is coming down with Fiona in the morning. Passang Rinjing and Ang Namgya will carry empty bottles down tomorrow. Dasona will remain at South Col tomorrow on support. Mingma Tshering, Mingma Tenzing, Karma Rita and Dorje Lama are moving from BC to 2 tomorrow. Kami P and Kami T will round trip carry from camp 1 tomorrow. They all carried from 1 today. AP, Nima Karma and Samduk carried from 2 to 1 today. Sophia and Brenda went down today and Justin is heading out tomorrow. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 21 - On Track for Summit Bids
Mark Tucker reports that Dave, Jim, and Dan are at Camp 2 and that Dennis, Paul, and Fiona and their Sherpas Dasona, Mingma Ongel, and Phinjo are at Camp 3. The weather is looking decent and everyone is on track for summit bids. Brenda and Sophia made it down to BC and as previously mentioned, John, JF, Walter, Karl, and Markus headed down the trail yesterday. So far so good! — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 20 - 2:45 pm - Everyone Is Safe Back at the South Col
I just got the call from Vern that the last members of the climbing team are now back at the South Col. It has been a long day (and night) for everyone so we will all soon be climbing into sleeping bags for a good sleep. I would like to give a big thank you to Nima Kancha who has been selflessly working at the South Col to keep all the climbers supplied with drinks and food. About an hour ago he went out with juice to meet the last people coming back to Camp 4. He didn’t have the glamour job of going to the summit, but we wouldn’t have made it without him.
Tomorrow everyone will be gathering their energies again to make the descent down the Lhotse Face to Camp 2, where they will spend tomorrow night. The following day is the final slide down the icefall to base camp. I’m sure everyone is looking forward to thick air, showers, and Gopal’s wonderful cooking. — Goodnight for now , Ellie — Everest Base Camp
Dispatch from Mountain Link -May 18 - We all arrived - Tomorrow we will head to high camp, at the south col
Perspective from Chris: We achieved Camp 3 - got in around 2 pm. It was a tough, tough day for me - real hard - one of the toughest days I've ever had. And, the team, all six Western climbers are here and in good spirits. And soon as we arrived we went into our tents to relax. We're on oxygen and that helps us rest and keeps us warm. It's a beautiful day. Some of our friends summitted today, and weather looks clear for tomorrow and through the 20th. Tomorrow is going to be a tough, tough day as well, but I think I can do that. I tell you what though, I don't know how I can go and get 6 or 7 hours rest and then go out and do a 16 hour day - they say the oxygen will help me, but we'll just do the best we can. The team is just great - in good spirits. The Sherpa team will come up tomorrow on the SouthCol.
Just an additional note, people may be interested in Camp 3. We're right at 24,000 feet. We have three, two-man tents. We have lines all around the tent and we don't even go outside the tent without being clipped in. There are holes all around. Camp itself, of course, is on solid rock so it's more spread out. From here, the route is really clear and it's always fun to see the mountain chip away. Of course if you know something of Everest, you know we're only 5,000 feet away - less than a mile. But when you're sucking air and taking 30 seconds for each step, you might as well be 100 miles away. I thought everyone might get a kick out of the camp and those who know oxygen, I'll sleep tonight on 2-liter and then climb tomorrow on 3-liter and in the tough sections, I'll crank it to 4. Goes without saying, all of us have support, but we've got to be realistic here. I told a real famous climber, good friend Dave Hahn, who is an American going for the record, sets the summit for western climbers, and just a real gentleman - that of the last of the surviving climbers, I am by far the oldest - makes you feel good to know that you're a fish out of water. Hahn is a good friend with all of our team and he'll try to summit with us. — Chris Balsiger
Dispatch Alpine Ascents International - May 18 A Good Night at Camp 3 - Good Morning for May 18
The news today comes from base camp because the team is really busy getting packed up at Camp 3. As I write this they are starting on their way up to Camp 4 at the South Col. Yesterday everyone moved up from Camp 2 in what turned out to be blistering heat. Normally everyone is bundled up in warm clothes to withstand the wind and chill of the Lhotse Face, but yesterday the sun was out it full force. I think Lakpa’s comment over the radio was, “this is just too hot”. From base camp we watched a big buildup of clouds starting about noon. They looked very threatening – in the American Midwest we’d be expecting thunder, lightning, and hail. But Dave informed us that up high it was pretty benign and that they were very grateful for the shade.
It took the team between seven and nine hours to go from Camp 2 to Camp 3, where they moved into the tents anchored onto the side of the mountain. Unlike the last time at Camp 3, this time the climbers have the luxury of breathing oxygen. The last time they were trying to get their bodies to acclimatize; this time they are going for the summit and will take all the help they can get. So everyone passed a restful night with the oxygen tanks set at a half liter flow for sleeping. Today they will continue using oxygen as they climb up to Camp 4 and on up to the summit. Contrary to popular belief, they don’t have to be breathing extra oxygen all the time. By this time they are very well acclimatized, so they are able to take their masks off to do chores around the tents or to take short walks. But when there is work to be done, like climbing, breathing extra oxygen helps a lot. The other myth is that breathing oxygen helps you climb a lot faster. The reality is that it helps you climb a little bit faster, but the real value is that at high elevations it really helps you stay warm.
Today looks like another warm one as the team heads up to Camp 4. All the climbers have down suits for warmth, but today those suits are staying in their packs. We are also watching various weather reports that indicate we may be seeing more snow and wind in the near future. We’ll keep you posted as that weather picture develops. — Ellie Henke - Base Camp Manager
Dispatch form International Mountain Guides - May 15 - Summit Bid Plans
Expedition Leader Mark Tucker reports from Base Camp that the plans for the summit bids are taking shape. Sherpas Danuru and Tashi, two of our strongest, moved to the Col yesterday to start fixing rope in the morning to the Balcony. The first summit team will be Walter, Karl, Markus, JF, Dawa Nuru, and Justin. These climbers are at Camp 2 right now and they will be moving to Camp 3 in the morning.
John and Phu Nuru are moving up to Camp 2 in the morning and Sophia and Panuru are waiting for them. Those climbers will comprise the second summit team. Paul, Dasona, Fiona, Mingma Ongel, Dennis, Phinjo, and Brenda will be the third summit team. They are at Base Camp now and will be heading up to Camp 2 on the 17th. Dan and Jim are down in Pheriche getting some rest and will be back to Base Camp on the 17th and will be heading up a day or two after that. Now is where the rubber hits the road. All the training, planning and preparations come down to the next week or so. Keep your fingers crossed! — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 14 - BC - 5400m
It’s 7:45 pm here in Nepal on Sunday, May 14th- MOTHER’S DAY! It’s just gotten dark here in BC and everyone is already in bed for the night. Tomorrow we will be waking up early to head up the mountain and begin our push to the summit. Everyone was a bit quiet tonight as we ate dinner with the next week on their mind. Everyone is excited about the reality of moving up the mountain for a final time yet nervous about moving up again above CIII and into unknown territory.
Today we spent the day reviewing the oxygen system and making sure that our masks fit and were working properly along with the regulators… lots of Darth Vader jokes. After lunch it was back to the tents for some shut eye and organizing gear for the climb tomorrow. BC has become home away from home and our personal sleeping tents a bit of a sanctuary. We’ve been here long enough that they do feel like one’s own private home.
The day here was another glorious one after a very breezy morning. The winds whipped down off of the Lho La from Tibet to make for a cold morning until about 10:00 a.m. The afternoon was spectacular though and allowed for a great baseball game down at the “diamond”. Behind one of the American Team’s camp is a perfect pitch of ice that’s been the site of cricket matches, baseball games and rounds of golf. Despite someone trying to cork their bat our team pulled off a ‘W’ in the top of the 9th.
The whole team wants to send all of our best wishes to our Mothers and to all mothers out there. You’re the greatest! Happy Mother’s Day.
Our Liaison Officer, Namrata, arrived a few days ago and forced us out for a picture just before dinner. Here it is. Thanks Namrata for getting us out of the warm tent for a group photo we needed!
We’ll speak to you from CII. All the best — Dave
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 13 - First Summit Team at Camp 2
The latest news is that Dave, Dan, and Brenda are down to BC, and the first summit team of Justin, Walter, Karl, Markus, Sophia, and J.F. made it up to C2 in good shape, and are planning a rest day tomorrow. John decided not to go up with them and is planning to head up in a day or two. Dan and Jim are going down to Pheriche for a couple days of rest before their summit push. The (above-the-Col) rope fixing Sherpas are standing by at Camp 2, ready to move to the Col tomorrow if the weather looks good. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 12 - Resting and Watching the Weather
The South Col is now stocked and everyone is now back down for rest (with the exception of Dave, Brenda, and Dan who are back to C2 after sleeping at C3, and who will be back to BC tomorrow). Some of the Sherpas have now gone down to the village for a few days of rest. The first summit team of John, JF, Sophia, Justin, Markus, Karl and Walter is heading for Camp 2 tomorrow. If the fixing to the Balcony goes well, they will be looking at the 17th for a summit day. So far the weather report for the next week looks reasonably good, with the jet stream shifting to the north of Everest. We will be checking it closely over the next few days. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch form International Mountain Guides - May 10 - Fixing Above the Col
The team had a big meeting at IMG Base Camp to figure out how the rope fixing will be accomplished over the next couple days. Jangbu reports that the Leaders from 12 different teams showed up and meeting went well. The Plan for fixing above the Col involves 2 Sherpas from IMG, 1 Sherpa from HG, 1 Sherpa from AAI, 1 Sherpa from AC, 1 Sherpa from Kobler, 1 Sherpa from the Spanish all go to the Col on the 14th and fix up to the Balcony on the 15th. Those teams who don't have the sherpa power contributed ropes and oxygen bottles. They have a sirdar's (Sherpa Leaders) meeting scheduled again tomorrow to coordinate rope/gear collection etc. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Mountain Link - Last Update May 9
May 8, 2006 - Here is an update on the location of the team and the reasoning behind it.
After a long climbing rotation establishing Camps 2 & 3 the team returned to basecamp May 3rd. At this point in the expedition rest and recuperation are critical to make a strong summit bid. Some expeditions will stay at base camp, which is more old school, but most choose to descend to a lower elevation to let the extra oxygen intake help their bodies recover from the stress of living and climbing at high altitude.
There are pros and cons to leaving base camp. We debated them more than a few times before making our decision. If we leave we could miss a potential weather window to make a summit attempt. This is a possibility that still haunts me, I admit I am still old school but my crystal ball broke a long time ago. It doesn't matter what the weather is doing if the team isn't physically and mentally prepared to give it their best attempt. Turning around in good weather is not an option we want to explore.
Hence the decision was made to descend and recover. The interesting part is how far to descend and for what amount of time. Well in this day and age there are large Russian made helicopters that can fly to just below base camp and then fly your whole team to Kathmandu in about an hour. Imagine waking up in a little stone tea house early in the morning high in the Himalaya, then swimming in the pool at the Hyatt before noon after a month of climbing. I not sure about most people but it has been working really well for us. The coughs and any nagging low grade infections have vanished in the last few days. By staying just a few days we don't feel it will compromise anyone's acclimatization. In fact Lhawang has been having such good luck at the roulette table in the hotel casino he has almost won enough to buy the helicopter flight back to the mountain.
The team plans to leave early morning from Kathmandu on May 9th and be in base camp on the May 10th. They will begin their summit push on May 11th. We will be working hard on keeping the dispatches flowing once the team is on the move back up the mountain.
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 8 - Deboche - 3750m
Friends, family and loved ones,
We’ve gone deep. In the last couple of days we have descended down to 3800m, back to our first night below Tangboche at the little Ama Dablam Garden Lodge. Many changes have taken place since our last visit, most notable, all the Rhododendrons are in bloom. The surrounding Rhody Forest is ablaze with color, a veritable collage painting the hillsides. The other pleasant change is there is Oxygen…..lots of the life giving stuff. This is why we are here, for the O2. It changes everything. From the taste of food to the depth of our sleep, life is good. We are warm, well fed and very content. There are birds singing, pica whistling and Musk deer grazing. We’ve even believe we spotted the rare but mighty wild Lammergeier. These predators, with a potential of a 9ft. wingspan had us concerned that I might take Kay from us.
Needless to say our health, both mental and physical is on the mend. Our spirits are soaring. This is as close paradise as we can easily walk to in just a couple of days. Intuitively, it doesn’t make sense to go down to climb the highest mountain in the world, but the reality is it feels real good to recover from the detrimental effects of altitude. We hope this will pay off when we return to the mountain next week. Stay tuned to the further adventures of our team. Namaste — Vern Tejas
Dispatch from Mountain Link - May 7
2006 Hi Everyone, I am going to keep this short. Check out the podcast and videos for more info. It really does tell the tale. However, our team is in Kathmandu. I know, I know...What!! Kathmandu!! As Napoleon Dynamite would say, "heck yes"! We are all doing great. That is why we are down. We are resting and recuperating and in a day we are going back to basecamp and will get ready for our summit attempt.
We have come down low to fully recover and basically get oxygen rich again. It personally paid off for me in 2004 and we cannot wait to get back up there with everything all set for a summit. Hopefully 10 - 14 days away. Keep your fingers crossed for greaaat weather! — JJ
Photo by Alpine Ascents International
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 7 - BC
Hey now, he we are back in basecamp: morning sun, morning coffee, morning showers, and warmth. That’s relative warmth. Along with all of those items comes smiles. Everyone is looking fairly clean as well after arriving in BC around noon yesterday and immediately lining up at the shower. It’s a long way from a few nights ago in CIII: morning coughs, morning tent condensation rainshowers, morning headaches, and cold. The upside? Incredible beauty at 23,000 ft. and the challenge of moving higher.
The week long round trip acclimatization process went well. Today the goal is to get a bunch of photos out to you from the trip. We did run low on power over the past couple of days so the May 5th dispatch is just being sent from BC today. We’ll talk soon. All the best — Dave
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 6, 2006 - Route In Almost to Col
Expedition Leader Mark Tucker reports from Base Camp that the wind has settled down a bit now, and that despite some wet snow that fell today, the weather seems to be improving a bit. It sounds like the route is almost in to the South Col, and right now a number of the IMG Sherpas are at Camp 2, hoping to be able to start carrying loads to the South Col in the next day or two.
The remaining Sherpas at Base Camp will all be moving to Camp 2 day after tomorrow as well — so that will start the big push to get Camp 4 stocked with tents, rope, fuel, and oxygen in preparation for the summit bids. Walter, Markus, and Karl are up at Camp 3 right now spending the night. Jim and Jack are at Camp 2 right now, probably going to Camp 3 tomorrow. Dennis, Paul, and Fiona are also at Camp 2 now, planning to go to Camp 3 the day after tomorrow. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 4 - CIII - 7200m
It's 7:30 pm here in CIII! We made it up through some morning winds that gaveway to a very intense afternoon sun. The team was stellar today and everyone pulled into camp relatively close together at around 3 pm. Unfortunately we don't have the battery power to send photos of today now but will at a later time.
We've just finished up with some testing for research being conducted at BC. The fact that people were still up for being tested after arriving here shows that the team is doing great. Everyone is excited to have made this big step. Tomorrow morning we'll wait for the sun to hit the tents then begin our pack up and descent to CII. After a night in CII we'll head to BC briefly before our drop back.
The wind has just begun howling again here in CIII and it looks like we're in for a noisy night. All the best — Dave
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 3 - Camp 3
Tucker and Jangbu report from Base Camp via sat phone that everything is going well for the IMG team. Today a number of climbers moved towards Camp 3. Dan went to the base of the Face while Justin, JF, John, Sophia and several Sherpas moved to Camp 3 for further acclimatization. Walter, Karl, and Markus are on their way directly to Camp 2 today from Base Camp. Jim stopped at Camp 1 to rest and melt some water, but may also continue up to Camp 2. The weather has been cold and windy but otherwise OK. — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 3 - CII - Namaste & Tashi Delek!
We had a bit of a false start this morning- or perhaps trial run is a better term. This morning we headed out for CIII but once we gained the bergshrund ran into high winds on the face. We turned around just above the shrund to wait for a day with better conditions. It looks as though the wind has calmed this afternoon though there are still very high winds at the summit elevation.
So now we're resting up in the warmth of our tents for another go in the morning. The team is doing great despite running out of coffee at CII this morning and a dwindling TP supply. We'll make it through though.
Many teams are now making their way towards CIII for their highest acclimitization trip and some we hear are coming to CII as part of an early summit push. We'll be taking our time on our drop below BC before returning to be in position for our summit push.
We'll be in touch tomorrow from CIII. All the best — Dave
Dispatch from Mountain Link - May 2
The team has returned to base camp after spending time at camp II acclimatizing. All team members are healthy and feeling strong. They are resting and eating great food prepared by Jennifer Barton, owner of Carrot Top Catering
Everest Dispatch Continued
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - May 1 - Movement on the Mountain
Ang Jangbu reports today from Base Camp the latest news:
We heard today that 3 Sherpas and 3 Tibetans summitted at around 3pm yesterday on the North side. Phurba Tashi called me on radio. They went up from 7900m camp to fix rope on the ridge and ended up going all the way. They got back down to 7900m camp at around 9:00 pm last night.
On the south side here one of the Italian Lhotse climbers got hit by ice on his head on the lower part of the ice fall today, and he was rescued down by different teams (including couple of our Sherpas.) I believe the team was handled by Cho Oyu trek. They waited at the heli pad until 2:45pm for a helicopter to come in but we heard the heli couldn't come up from Lukla due to weather so the injured guy is currently being carried back to HRA clinic for overnight.
Couple sherpas from Chilean team started to fix above camp 3 today. Sounds like they fixed about 500 meters of rope. Couple of Kari Kobler sherpas are fixing again tomorrow. Hopefully we will have South Col route fixed by Wednesday or Thursday.
We have 6 Sherpas moving up to Camp 2 tomrrow to sleep: Ang Passang, Kami Tshering, Danuru, Karma Rita, Pemba Dorje, Samduk Dorje. They will then carry to Camp 3 the next day and set up tents up there. Rest of the Sherpas are carrying to Camp 2 tomorrow.
We already have 83 bottles of oxygen at Camp 2 (including personal Sherpa bottles) but still have a bunch more to carry. JF, John, Sophia, Dan, Panuru, Dawa Nuru, Phunuru went part way up the Lhotse face today. Dave made a carry from 1 to 2 today and sleeping at 1 tonight. He is planning to go to 2 tomorrow to sleep. Justin is going all the way to 2 tomorrow. Walter's team plus Brenda decided to wait one more day down here.Regards — Jangbu, Deputy Expedition Leader
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - May 1 - CII
Friends, family and loved ones,
Marvelous day with marvelous progress made by the team. We made excellent time on our way to camp two at 6400m. Our weather was Goldilocks, clear with a slight breeze, which kept us from melting as we climbed through the Cwm. Cwm is the Welsh word for high valley, and this is the highest in the world. Being high, there is little filtration of the sun, ironically the heat can be unbearable in this valley. Thank goodness for a bit of wind.
The team is fit, hence our great pace ascending. Our acclimatization plan is working. Spirits remain high and our resolve is firm. We are elated to hear that four Sherpa summited from the North side yesterday. This is unseasonably early and is a very encouraging development . Please stay tuned to see what happens next. Nameste — Vern Tejas
Dispatch from Mountain Link - April 28 - Dispatch from Base Camp
I am happy to report that the expedition is still on track and running smoothly. The team members and sherpa crew are climbing strong and making excellent progress up the mountain. Most of the team rendevouzed at Camp 2 today while our lead crew of sherpa made their first trip to establish Camp 3. The team will take a rest day today at ABC (Advanced Base Camp) or Camp 2, ( 21,500 ft.). Tomorrow they take an acclimatization climb towards Camp 3 at 24,500 ft.. The goal is not to inhabit the camp but to do some climbing on the Lhotse Face to better prepare for their upcoming summit bid. The climbers report to be in good health and high spirits to take on the challenges of the upper mountain.
I would like to take a moment to remember and honor the three sherpa that were lost in the Khumbu Icefall accident. One of whom was a good friend of Tap and Heidi as well as myself. Phinjo Sherpa and I reached the summit Cho Oyu together in 1998. He and Tap had been on five himalayan expeditions and Tap's father Rick was helping Phinjo's family to build a tea house here in the Khumbu region. He also reached the summit of Cho Oyu with both Tap and Heidi. We will always remember him fondly and our condolences go out to his family and friends as well as to the other two sherpa and their loved ones.
At this point in time with any luck things can progress pretty quickly. We still need to get more loads into position; oxygen,fuel, food and more tents for Camp 3 and Camp 4. Everyone is working hard towards that goal carrying loads and moving supplies up the mountain. We will do our best to keep everyone updated as the events happen. — Robo
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - April 29 - BC - 5400m
Friends, family and loved ones,
We take our rest seriously. All of us stayed close to base camp today in preparation of tomorrows ascent. Showers, emails and packing equipment filled the day. The excitement throughout camp is palpable as Sherpa and climbers alike do all their last minute sorting and organizing. This is to be our second foray through the Khumbu Icefall and we are still very sensitive to the dangers of this area. Our goal is move up over the next five days to 7000m and let our bodies adapt to this new elevation. Our miraculous bodies will overcompensate and give us the ability to go even higher in time.
Were going to bed early so we will be functional at three am. Though several of us have a Khumbu cough, we feel fit and ready for this next phase. All are hoping that Icefall remains quiet for our eight hour passage. Wish us luck with the ice as well as the weather. Thanks. Namaste — Vern Tejas
Photo coutesey of International Mountain Guides
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - April 27
Mark Tucker reports that the route is in to Camp 3 at 24,000 feet (about 7300m) halfway up the Lhotse Face! This is good news, especially due to the fact that IMG Sherpas Danuru and Karma Rita were in the lead team and have secured for IMG some prime real estate at this most unpleasant camp. This is one of the reasons IMG goes early—the teams that arrive late to Camp 3 must spend hours and hours hacking out tent platforms that have little natural shelter.
While very spectacular, Camp 3 is not very comfortable. Climbers must wear crampons everytime they leave the tents (steep!), it is often windy, there are spindrift snow avalanches that often bury the tents, and it is generally just faily miserable. Over the next couple weeks all the climbers will be going up to spend a couple nights at Camp 3 for further acclimatization, prior to summit bids. Sounds like fun!
Justin and Brenda are back at BC. Paul and Fiona are up to C2. The rest of the C2 people are staying for another night. Bud, Sophia, John, JF, Dan are all going to C1 tomorrow. Tashi Dorje has gone down to see the lama at Pangboche. Ang Jangbu should be back to Base Camp later today.
We'll keep you posted! — Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents Interntainal - April 26 - BC evening
Hey there. It’s tea time at Everest BC. Most of the team is resting in their cozy tents beneath the light afternoon snow. Gopal has served up some smoked salmon with tea and the Sherpa team is watching an afternoon showing of ‘Shrek 2’ after carrying loads to CII this morning. It’s the daily life of base camp.
We’re staying comfortable here after our not so comfortable trip up to CI and CII. The weather pattern has returned to the typical for this time of year. Extremely clear and crisp mornings followed by snow flurries in the late afternoon and clearing come 8 or 9 p.m. Many teams are up at CI and CII now leaving mostly staff here in BC. Today the fixing of the upper mountain began. Chewang Nima and Tshering Dorje left CII early this morning with Sherpa from the AC and IMG teams to begin the fixing of the Lhotse face to CIII. We spoke with them this afternoon as they began the descent back to CII and it sounds as though the face is particularly icy this season. The anchors will be primarily screws in hard blue ice this year. Our Sherpa think that by tomorrow they’ll have finished fixing to CIII. The boys are working hard.
Tomorrow we’re planning a day away from BC- either hiking up to Pumori CI or up Kala Pattar. Both spots have spectacular views back towards Everest and the South Col. Hopefully we’ll wake again to clear skies in order to make the trip worth the effort. It would be hard for anybody to go home and show a slide show without these quintessential views! If the day dawns clear we’ll take some shots for the cybercast tomorrow. Until then, take care. All the best — Dave
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides – April 25 - Moving Uphill
Mark Tucker reports from Base Camp that most of the Sherpas did "back-to-back" carries to C2 the last two days, so today they have the day off. Mingmar, Lhakpa Bhote, and Justin are at C1, going to C2 tomorrow. Pemba Dorje, Samduk, Dorje, Danuru, and Karma Rita went to C2 today, where they will set up the big kitchen/dining tent today, spend two nights there and continue work on C2 set up. Danuru and Karma Rita will stay there to be ready to start moving towards C3 if possible. Brenda, Walter, Karl, Marcus, and Dennis are moving up from C1 to C2 today. Jim, Jack, Fiona, and Paul plan to spend a second night at C1.
Dispatch from Mountain Link - April 23
Everest base camp Tap, Mike, JJ, and Garrett made a carry to Camp 1. There is a lot more snow (about 1 meter) at Camp 1 from the storm. Today is a rest day, and tomorrow the group will move to Camp 1, then Camp 2 the following day. We plan to spend 4 or 5 days between Camp 1 and Camp 2, and if the weather is good possibly make an attempt at the summit. — GM
Photo by Juerg Bandle, International Mountain Guides
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - April 22 - Ready to Climb Again
IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports from BC that after a day of reorganizing, rethinking, and reconnecting, the expedition team is "back on track" and everyone is ready to go again. Tomorrow 15 Sherpas are scheduled to carry to Camp 2 and the Camp 2 staff will start occupying that camp. Walter, Markus, and Karl are heading up in the morning to Camp 1. Everyone else is getting ready to head up in the next couple days. Thanks to those of you that have sent support, I have passed that on to the team. We are going to set up a fund for Phinjo's two kids (age 12 and 14), details to follow. It has been a tough couple of days for everyone, not only the climbers and Sherpa team, but also for everyone back home. Let's hope that everything settles down now, and the climb proceeds smoothly. We'll keep you posted!
— Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - April 21 - Everest Base Camp - The Team Heads for Camp 1 - 5945m
Today’s cybercast comes to you from base camp because it’s been a long day for the team. Our snowy weather pattern finally broke, bringing us clear skies, sunshine, and colder temperatures at night. So that was our signal for the team to “get outta Dodge” (e.g. base camp). Some team members got better sleep than others last night as their thoughts turned to climbing above base camp for the first time. We know Kay has been efficiently packed for days, and Alistair has things meticulously in order. He even set his alarm for half an hour before our planned 3:00 a.m. wake-up tea, just to make sure everything was just right. Dave, on the other hand, is trying out a new pack today and didn’t sound particularly pleased with it this morning.
The team awoke in darkness and did their final preparations by headlamp. By their departure at shortly after 4:00 am they were full of breakfast, had their seat harnesses on, and were ready to put on crampons at the base of the icefall. A little bit of dawn light was just beginning to show as they burned juniper and threw rice for good luck at the puja altar before starting on their way.
A few radio conversations told us their position as they headed up the icefall, through the big fins of ice at the bottom, across the first ladders, and into a broken section known as the “popcorn”. By the time they reached a safe rest area known as the “football field” at the top of the popcorn first reports started coming in of a big ice collapse higher in the icefall. We will have more details of that later, but to make a long story short, it took a while to form a plan of action and replace some of the fixed lines through that area. As a result, the team was a full 12 hours getting to Camp 1 (normal for our groups is between 8 and 10 hours). Everyone sounded ok but pretty exhausted by the time they got to camp. I’m sure they will be looking forward to a good sleep tonight and “lie in” (as our British friends would say) tomorrow morning.
— So goodnight from Ellie and all the base camp team.
Photo by Mountain Link
Dispatch from Mountain Link - April 20
It has been storming here like crazy. Well, actually the storm has blown over. What is left at base camp is 2 feet of snow. And I cannot tell you how good it is to be at b.c. instead of up high, which several other teams are. It is one of the toughest parts of mountaineering, being stuck. Because being stuck usually means being bored. However, the various team members have been doing different things to stay occupied. Here's a sample:
Chris - Beat everyone in every card game ever known
Tap - Perfected his golf swing to redeem himself on the Khumbu Golf Course
Mike - Read every book in camp and proceed to ruin it for everyone else ... because he reads them out loud
Garrett - Has been getting a kick out of shocking himself over and over again on our technology set-up
JJ - Practices his dance moves to the soundtrack, Saturday Night Fever
Heidi - Continues to study fashion and has come up with 7 new ways to wear a Buff
Robert - Has been modeling the 7 new ways to wear a Buff
So as you can imagine, we have kept ourselves busy in our own unique ways. We did manage to stretch our legs in the icefall. We are waiting for the conditions to completely settle. We will then venture up to Camp One at 19,900' for an evening.
April 19 - BC
Friends, family and loved ones, the best laid plans of mice and men oft do go awry. And so it is with us, as our plans to ascend to camp 1 have been buried under 35 cm. of snow. This is the most fresh snow I have seen in nine Everest expeditions. We actually got up yesterday morning at 3:00am as planned however Dave, Lakpa and I all decided it wiser to stay put than venture into a building storm. As the day wore on we were very happy with this choice because it has continued to dump with whiteout and windy conditions. Ah, the fruits of our hard won experience pay off.
The team was delighted to sleep in even though we are eager to start the climb. Here we have many creature comforts that make waiting bearable. As a bonus we are getting even more acclimatized. We are all sleeping well and in good health. We are ploughing through books and games with great enthusiasm. We have had many great discussions with even more to come…..Once again It’s a real joy to be with a good team, especially on these storm days. It continues to snow today making it well over 24 hours continuous. We’ll see what tomorrow brings.
Stay tuned and Namaste — Vern Tejas
Dispatch from International Mountain Guides - April 18 - Snow in BC
I spoke to IMG Everest Expedition Leader Mark Tucker at Base Camp and he reports that the weather has been marginal the last couple days, with over a foot of fresh snow at BC. The weather report we received says that low pressure north of Mt. Everest is pushing snow into the area, but it is supposed to improve today. Currently we have 6 climbers (Justin, JF, John, Sophia, Dan, Jim) and 3 sherpas up at Camp 1. Sounds like they waited yesterday, rather than coming down in the storm. They may end up staying another day at Camp 1 rather than having to break trail up or down. Everyone else is waiting at BC for things to improve before pushing back up. So far so good!
— Eric Simonson, International Mountain Guides Director
Photo by Alpine Ascents International
Dispatch from Alpine Ascents International - April 17 - BC
5400m - A big hello from BC to everyone out there. It’s Monday afternoon around 4:30 pm Nepal time. We’ve had a day of preparations and arranging gear and equipment for our move up the route. Tomorrow we head out to CI for a 4 night trip in the thinner air of the Western Cwm. Our Sherpa team have spent the past two days hauling loads up to CII and tomorrow morning will bring yet another haul to CII.
Moving up the mountain has everyone anxious in anticipation. There are so many stories and so much history surrounding this mountain that each move is usually filled with ideas about what it will look like, be like, feel like. The Western Cwm is a spectacular amphitheater with Everest’s west shoulder, southwest face, and the Lhotse-Nuptse massif forming an immense horseshoe feature with the Khumbu glacier forming its bottom 8,000 ft below Everest’s summit. It is gorgeous. It’s also equal parts exciting and intimidating the first trip up. I know each of our climbers are looking forward to the experience of walking in the Cwm.
The group is having a great time together. After a few weeks the pleasantries are gone and a sort of surrogate family forms- complete with sibling rivalry… lots of ‘taking the piss out of each other’ as Ali would say. We’re certainly there. You can’t ask for more than that on a team!
We’ll be cybercasting from up on the mountain from CI and CII. Talk to you then. — Dave
Dispatch from Mountain Link - April 14 - Everest base camp 17, 600'
Today the last of our trekkers left base camp to head for Pheriche, where they will take a helicopter to Kathmandu. We are finally settled into base camp, having organized our mounds of equipment into neat and functional systems such as:
-The communications tent complete with radio base station, internet access, miniture home theater, and recharging of personal electronics.
-The shower tent, 9 feet tall with medium pressure hot water, towel rack, slate counter tops, and small vanity mirror.
-The dining tent, where we gather for group meals prepared by our American chef, Jennifer Barton. Card games involving low stakes betting of rupees occur frequently.
-Our personal tents, which stand just over 6 feet tall and come equipped with cots for sleeping.
-The cook tent where food prep. and dishwashing go round the clock.
We conducted our Puja ceremony 2 days ago where we give offerings and are blessed by a lama, then the sherpas raise our puja pole and prayer flags over our camp and we are then ready to begin climbing the mountain.
Yesterday Tap and myself ventured into the icefall to stretch our legs, and tomorrow we will carry loads to camp 1 at 19,000 ft. — GM
Archived summit weather on Mount Everest 8,850 M (29,035 feet)
5/13/06 - Winds at 50 knots from the west and temperatures at -27C Light snow showers at times
5/12/06 - Winds at 55 knots from the west and temperatures at -30C Light snow showers at times
5/11/06 - Winds at 40 knots from the west and temperatures at -30C Light snow showers at times
5/10/06 - Winds at 38 knots from the west and temperatures at -30C
5/09/06 - Winds at 32 knots from the west and temperatures at -31C
5/08/06 - Winds at 30 knots from the west and temperatures at -32C
5/07/06 - Winds at 38 knots from the west and temperatures at -32C Some snow showers at times
5/06/06 - Winds at 40 knots from the west and temperatures at -32C Some snow showers at times
5/05/06 - Winds at 60 knots from the west and temperatures at -31C
5/04/06 - Winds at 65 knots from the west and temperatures at -31C Snow showers at times
5/03/06 - Winds at 42 knots from the west and temperatures at -31C
5/02/06 - Winds at 43 knots from the west and temperatures at -32C
5/01/06 - Winds at 44 knots from the northwest and temperatures at -33C
4/30/06 - Winds at 33 knots from the northwest and temperatures at -31C
4/29/06 -Winds at 41 knots from the northwest and temperatures at -32C
4/28/06 - Winds at 47 knots from the West and temperatures at -35C some snow showers
4/27/06 - Winds at 45 knots from the West and temperatures at -35C
4/26/06 - Winds at 44 knots from the West and temperatures at -36C
4/25/06 - Winds at 42 knots from the West and temperatures at -37C
4/24/06 - Winds at 30 knots from the West and temperatures at -37C
4/22/06 - Winds at 40 knots from the West and temperatures at -35C, snow
4/21/06 - Winds at 45 knots from the NW and temperatures at -38C
4/20/06 - Winds at 50 knots from the West and temperatures at -38C
4/19/06 - Winds at 58 knots SW, temperatures at -38 C and snow
4/18/06 - Wind 65 knots from SW, temperatures at -36 C and snow
4/17/06 - Winds at 60 knots from the SW and temperatures at -37C
Medium Range Forecasts for Central Asia
Issued by the National Centers for Environmental Prediction
The 200 millibar chart is generally where the jet stream can be found. The 200 millbar chart is generallyat 39,000 foot level (12,000 meters) for this time of the year. This is obviously above Mt Everest 29,035 feet (8800 meters)but this gives a good indicator of where the jet stream might be located. The jet will be in areas in which the windsexceed 76 knots (38 meters per second). This map lists winds in meters per second and to convert meters per second to knots one simply multiplies by a factor of two.
Generally when winds exceed 50 meters per second (100 knots) the winds can generally be at 75 knots or so at the Everest summit. These stronger winds are in the darker colors with the color codes found the the upper right hand part of the chart.
This forecast is from the COLA and IGES web sites and the underlying data are the direct product of the various operational forecast models run by the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, National Weather Service, NOAA and are supplied without interpretation or correction.
Mount Everest viewed from the summit of Cho Oyu. The Northeast ridge runs along the left skyline with the North Ridge dropping off toward the North Col and Changtse about half way down. The Western Cwm, South Col, and Southeast ridge are visible to the right, as well as Lhotse and Nuptse.
Photo by Craig John © International Mountain Guides - All Rights Reserved.