Newsletter #712 April 2013
Finally the teams are reunited at base camp
I am writing this from our Lobuje Camp, where I have just missed our Lhotse/Nuptse team, who were heading up the hill to join their Everest colleagues at base camp. "Didi, you will be on your own tonight. All your friends have gone," our cook Kur Bahadur welcomed me. Indeed, the camp is empty but I had rather stay here another night than gain another 600m to Everest Base Camp.
"There is not much to report from here," said Russell when I contacted him on the radio. "Everyone is feeling good and it is nice that the teams are finally together." While most people are at Everest Base Camp, our Japanese guide Shinji, Lhotse member Naoki and two Japanese trekkers are on their way to the summit of Lobuje East. They will stay one night at high camp, go to the summit tomorrow and will be back down at Lobuje base camp on Saturday evening.
On my way up I talked to Chhiring, an employee of the Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee (SPCC), the Nepali organisation employing the icefall doctors. He had just come back from the funeral of Mingma Sherpa, an icefall doctor who sadly died falling into a crevasse a few days ago. He told me that unfortunately Mingma had not been clipped into the fixed rope when he was coming down from Camp 1. "It is very sad and the atmosphere is a bit subdued amongst the Icefall Doctors. But we have to get on with our work to make sure everyone can go through the Icefall as safely as possible," Chhiring told me.
This is all for the time being, however, there will be more to report once our acclimatisation rotation has started and the Puja, the Buddhist blessing ceremony, is ongoing. In the meantime everyone is relaxing and resting, just as you are supposed to on the weekends.