Newsletter 22 September 2006
Here is the much heralded and heavily anticipated second part of the Cho Oyo 2006 Newsletter.
Since last being in contact the group have made a trip up to the top of the the ice cliff between Camps 1 and 2. While the going was rather steep, most took the opportunity to practice using their ascenders on the fixed rope and all were finally rewarded with spectacular views afforded by the clear and bright weather. It was possible to see all the way down to Camp 1 and ABC in one go. With the snow capped Himalaya (and in particular a crystal clear view of Shishapangma) mixing in with the flashing saphire of the sky, the whole prospect was simply breathtaking.
At this point it is certainly worth mentioning that our group has shrunk by one. Sadly Marianne Stam wife of Kiek Stam and thus half of the powerful Dutch duo has retired from the expedition. She is now on her way to Lhasa for a few days, and then to tour some monasteries north of Lhasa for another couple of days. We will be reunited with Marianne in Kathmandu at the end of the expedition. We wish her all the best, to travel safely, and look forward to sharing a properly poured "Dutch" beer with her in Kathmandu!
Special mention should also be made for our Swiss representative Patrick Lehuin who celebrated his second birthday on the mountain on the 17th! A wonderful meal was laid on with a specially made cake in his honour. An enthusiastic multi-accented "Happy Birthday" was also brought out to round-off the evening.
Following our trip to the ice cliff, staying at camp 1 on the 14th and travelling up to the cliff on the 15th, most of the group are still taking a well earned rest here at ABC... enjoying Lachu's culinary expertise (which we recently discovered extends to an apple pie that would turn most mothers granny smith green with envy), the luxury of our enthusiastically padded individual tents, and the warmth of the industrial gas heaters in the Dinning Tent (and obviously the accompanying high tension games of Monopoly). The writer would like to warn the reader that buying Everest (Monopoly "Mountaineering Edition" speak for Mayfair) for an artificially inflated $1000 is a truly misguided move... distined to ruin friendships and create insurmountable antipathys...
Therefore here at ABC everyone remains in particularly good spirits, however the group is a little spread out at the moment. Lydia, Octavio, and Martina are currently on their way up to Camp 2 for an additional acclimatisation and to carry their skis to Camp 2 (in order to conserve their energy on the summit push). We are currently scouring the mountain via telescope but as yet can find no signs of Octavio's suave pranksterism to locate them by.
So at this point we must sign off, basking in the Himalayan sun resting ourselves for the push for the summit (whenever it will come).
All the best,
A sunkissed Cho Oyo Team 2006.