Monday, November 24, 2008

November team back at base camp...

...and we summited!

(photo: James Bingham rounding the dablam in blistering winds)

Zangbu Sherpa, Damian, Neal, James, Chris & Lahkpa Sherpa summited 6856m Ama Dablam at apx 12 noon on November 23.

Everyone is now back at base camp feeling exhausted but elated at the success of our big climb. The route was tough this year. High winds, bullet proof ice and cold temps made for an exciting push from the new camp 3. (see 'New route on Ama?' post)

After acclimatizing on Island Peak, we rested for a day in BC. We then moved to c1 and slept. Next we carried some gear to c2 and descended back to c2 Then up to c3 and to the summit the next day and back to c3. Yesterday we descended to base and here we are.

I have to mention once again how important and necessary the help of our local Sherpa staff was. Tsering, Pasang, Zangbu & Lahkpa worked so hard and without them, the climb would have been a totally different story. I'd love to hear more praise for these guys and girls. These unsung heroes always seem to get the generic "...and Sherpa" mention. Also, Nima Sherpa, from Su Swagatam trek, our local operator who runs our local logistics and so so much more. Hats off to anyone who climbs without Sherpa support on these big hills. Very proud indeed.

Anyway, Neal, Dale, Damian, Noel & James are headed over to climb Lobuche in a couple of days with Lahkpa & Zangbu in the lead. My seemingly endless drive seems to have ended. And, along with a few frozen digits, I am in desperate need of some rest below 4000m. Nothing serious, just a sign that after 6 months on expedition, it's time for some, pardon the pun, down time.

Chris from Ama Dablam base camp.

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