NEWSLETTERS - Cho Oyo Autumn 1999

Newsletter 74 September 1999

An early morning problem with Janey loosing a crown is quickly rectified with the services of a dentist from another expedition who will be moving up the mountain behind us. We break camp early and yak loading commences with the sherpas and Russell organizing the 1.5 tones of kit to be moved up the mountain in this load carry and a further load carry will take place in a couple of days. All our personal gear has been packed in barrels for transit and we pack enough kit in sacs to get us to IBC and on to ABC.

Scott observes, in his medical capacity, that it is an early morning feature of high altitude conditions that boggies the size of small countries must be removed from the snooze before uncluttered breathing is available. The hike to IBC crosses the flood plain and therefore two river crossings involving some pretty damn cold feet are needed. The trail continues up the valley edge into the foothills and onto the edge of the moraine from the glaciers coming off the mountains surrounding Cho Oyo. For the last 200m the weather turns nasty and we arrive in IBC in sleet and poor vis. Even so the sherpa team has got the kitchen tent up and started on the mess tent. Scott and Tony immediately dump packs to turn back to help the two Japanese trekking girls who where finding the climb a little arduous.

After dinner chat by the light of a candle turns to first sexual encounters (less said the better). Scott scares the living daylights out of us with a ghost story which culminates in most of us jumping three feet in the air and Janey letting out a scream that wakes every Yak for 100miles. IBC is a one night stand only and therefore pretty basic by our standards but nevertheless Russell and his team of super Sherpas manage an excellent evening meal and we all retire early.

A card school develops in Janey's tent with Scott, Denise and Tony, which is cozy since there are four in a two man tent. Scott needs to visit Konico during the night and it looks like she will need to go down the mountain and the other Japanese trekkers will catch up with her in a couple of days prior to moving on to Lhasa for some sight seeing.