Thursday, May 5, 2016

May 2 - Camp 2

The climb from base camp to camp 2 yesterday was challenging, although the terrain was now familiar to me, ten hours of climbing coupled with an unexpected snow storm was exhausting!  It was much harder than I expected, I was grateful for the Sherpa that met me and Purba an hour outside of camp to share warm milk tea - just what I needed for the final push up the rocky moraine to camp!

Waiting to ascend a vertical ladder in the icefall
Photo:  Stuart Erskine
Khumbu icefall
Photo:  Stuart Erskine

It's now 5:00 pm on May 2nd, I'm laying in my tent at camp 2, trying to remember to breathe, drink, and eat.  I take short naps and then wake up, roll over, reluctantly unzip my sleeping bag, let the cold, dry air hit my face and lungs, and then breathe, drink, and eat a handful or M&Ms.  At sea level I wouldn't have to remind myself to do these things, especially the eating M&Ms part, but at 21,300 feet everything is a chore.  Outside I hear snow softly hitting my tent.  It's small pellets of snow, confirming that the temperature is probably below zero.  Every few minutes small piles of it slide down the nylon sides of the tent and I am worried that there will be too much unconsolidated snow to safely climb the steep Lhotse face tomorrow morning.  The plan is to climb to camp 3 (23,000 feet) to get familiar with moving up the face efficiently and safely and to dial in the equipment that will keep us warm and safe - down suits and mits, electronic foot warmers, ascenders.  Although tomorrow will be a tough day - 6 hours of climbing straight up - I'm hopeful that the weather cooperates because it will be important for building confidence for my summit attempt in a few weeks. 


  1. I'm praying for cooperative weather for you and all the other climbers. No unexpected snowstorms! Love the blog, btw.

  2. Thanks so much for your support, Robin!

  3. Best of luck to you....I also love the blog.

    1. Thanks, Leslie - that means a lot to me :)