Monday, July 16, 2012

FTA Broad Peak 2012 - Summit push is on!

Our team is all on the hill today headed to C2 and hoping to have a chance to summit in the next 4-6 days. They will push to C3 tomorrow if the weather holds and establish C4 the next day. We see a weather window right now opening up either the 19th or 20th and they hope to be in position. Stay tuned for all the action!

Camp 4 in 2003 at 7400m © stu remensnyder

Brad's Journal
Brad continues to share the daily details and you can enjoy catching up on the events at Broad Peak below. Enjoy!

July 13th - Rest Day

A day of low activity as we licked our wounds from our excursion to camp 3.  Matt and Darren got an impromptu base camp haircut and we received various visitors from other camps.

July 14th - Rest Day

Hypothermia and frostbite was the subject of an almost 2 hour discussion as we talked about our proposed summit push and ways to mitigate our chances of cold injuries. Louis gave us a fascinating story of being the subject of a hypothermia case study in the Quebec winter and Matt discussed getting very very cold in the wilds of Scotland.  After discussing the weather with Stu and then with team members we have put off for now departing base camp until the 17th (Al and Darren on the 16th) for a proposed 20th July summit attempt.

Now a very special culinary event happened in the evening as a Dzo (Kind of like a yak) arrived at camp and was promptly slaughtered. Until now, our sole protein source has been goat, which admittedly had been met with mixed reviews by various members. Personally, I had only really liked the accompanying sauce and not the meat itself.

The night’s entertainment was a British movie entitled ‘ The Last 7’ which I think was an adaptation of a theatre play. I left about halfway through the movie which seems was a wise move. 1 out of 5 ‘Adzes’ from the FTA base camp review committee.

July 15th - Rest Day

A very idle day as we all tried to minimize energy output and continued to drink and eat as much as our new found protein source as possible. We had a bit of a TV session in the dining tent in the morning, watching an episode of ‘Real Time with Bill Maher’ followed by ’30 Rock and then some “Robin Williams Live”

That afternoon, the weather deteriorated again, and we had intermittent gusts and snow showers. I took this prime opportunity to take a shower…well when I say a shower, 20 liters of hot water was prepared and I was given an empty fruit tin to which pour water over myself. I had visions of shaving my beard and luxuriating in cascading warm water, but gusts of snow flurries up my nether regions meant the shower was short lived and my beard may be now thus defined as Arkansas-lite.

After yesterday’s disappointing movie, we switched to standard Hollywood Rom-com and watched ‘ Forgetting Sarah Marshall’ which received 3 out of 5 ‘Adzes’

July 16th - Rest day

Hearing Al’s voice at 0530 am, I unzipped my tent door and waved goodbye to Al, Darren, Sayed and Aziz as they braved light snow and made there way, for possibly the last time across the glacier up to Camp 1. Al and Darren had decided that it suits them best to make their way up to Camp 2 over 2 days, to conserve energy on their summit push.

Matt Grace, Ben, Arnie, Zeshan, Hamza and I had another meat-fuelled bonanza of a breakfast. (Louis was felling a bit poorly in the morning but recovered by the afternoon) The weather was still inclement and we hung put in the dining tent and generally bull-shitted. We started discussing our departure over the Gondogoro La pass, perhaps finding it easier to discuss our departure than our summit push. A member of the Chinese team across and we discussed climbing together but they are having problems with logistics and their HAP’s, so we shall see.

The rest of the day was spent organizing last minute items for the summit push and munching on as much crackers and cheese as possible.

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