Friday, October 21, 2011

FTA Khumbu Peaks and Passes - Lobuche East Summits!

from stu in the USA office
Oct 20, 2011

Lobuche East update
Ben called in from base camp to let us know that everyone was doing well and that they had just returned from the summit of Lobuche East's "Far East" summit!

Mattias, Richards, Tsering and Ben all made it to the top while Veronika stopped about 100m shy of the top when she felt her energy wane and wanted to be sure to have good reserves for the descent. Ben said they began the day with great views and great conditions but as the summit neared they lost much of their visibility so unfortunately did not have much of a view on the top. Nonetheless they had a great day and were down getting ready for a good supper. Congrats to all of them for a job well and prudently done!

FTA guide Sean James high on Lobuche © chris szymiec

Next up - Cho la & Gokyo Ri
With the main climbing portion of the trip done they will send back their tech gear and now enjoy crossing two of the great passes in the Khumbu region: The Cho La and the Renjo la. The Cho La pass (at 5330m) will bring them over to the Gokyo valley and while they are there they will climb up the non-technical Gokyo Ri and be treated to one of the best views to be had of Everest.
From the top of Gokyo Ri (5367m) which is just a 2 hour scamper from Gokyo village, Everest sits up in a grand fashion as a rocky and icy pyramid. One has great views of some of the most demanding and difficult lines of Everest. One can aslso take in a single sweeping view 5 of the highest peaks on the planet with Everest, Cho Oyu, Makalu, Lhotse and Nuptse. in the foreground of these giants lie the jagged peaks of Cholatse and Tawoche and the turqoise lakes of the Gokyo valley.

Our team will move up to a small cluster of lodges at Dzhonglha (4860m) just before the Cho La pass today and have nice views back to much of the climb they just completed. Tomorrow they will head over the pass and stop at Dragnak (5025m) which is a tiny village tucked in against the lowest flanks of the pass. From there they will cross the undulating and intricate maze of the Ngozumpa glacier to reach the trekking trail and an easy finish into the small village of Gokyo (4780m). The Ngozumpa  Glacier is the longest in Nepal and stretches from Cho Oyu to Cholatse and our team will follow its western edge after Gokyo to make their final pass crossing over the Renjo La.

Crossing the Cho La © chris szymiec
Join Us Next Time
This is a wonderful and demanding trek and we are looking forward to putting it on again in each spring and autumn so have a look on our site and let us know when you can make it!

We have a few spots open for Ama Dablam with Ben Kane starting Nov 4 and would love to fill them. Check out the trip page and let us know if you are interested!


JackieK said...

Congrats to you all for Lobuche - yet another peak! Well done. Must be amazing to have the highs & lows of the peaks & passes. So much variety.
Enjoy your journeys, friendships & experiences. Best wishes from Oz & UK.

continuum fp said...

Hey Ben - great work: keep up the safe guidance; and great images!
Cheers - Eric Walters