Three nights ago there was a large thunder and lighting storm that past over much of Nepal, although very spectacular, and cleared all the pollution from Kathmandu it also struck one of the 77 repeater towers that enable EverestLink wifi at EBC. Of course some of these towers are quite remote, so it takes time to repair. So that is why there has been no updates from BC.
I am in Kathmandu, and have regular contact with BC by phone and text. I can assure everyone that everyone is fine, in good health, and ready to push for the summit, but they are all still at BC at this stage. The weather was looking promising a few days ago for the rope fixing team to go to S Col yesterday, and to the summit today, however the weather is always changing, and it is more windy today than was expected at the time this team departed BC. I understand that despite the wind, the rope is being fixed to the Balcony today. Lets hope that they might reach the summit tomorrow…..we will see.
My understanding of the weather forecast is that it will remain at -30 on the summit for the coming days, and that the wind will be variable between 20 – 30km for the next few days. This is outside my normal parameters for safety as the wind chill factor is rather cold. I am sure that there will be several teams pushing for the summit during this time, but the risk of frostbite is quite high, so I wish them all a safe return, with no damage. In the meanwhile our team will be patient and will wait for a calmer period and warmer temperatures in a few days time. Of course we like to think that we are understanding the weather very well…but it is always changing, and so we also need to be adaptable, and try and be in the right place at the right time.