Everest 2019: Summit Wave 2 Update and Recap, Kang Deaths – Update

UPDATE: 2 Deaths, a missing climber and 2 more needed helicopter evacuation off Kanchenjunga. Over 32 Everest summits on Thursday, May 16,2019, morning. 60+ Thus far.

We have more summits on Thursday, May 16 and this may be the all for a few days as the jet returns. Teams on both the Nepal and Tibet side are leaving base camps in a few days targeting May 23-26 as their summits day.  But there two Indian climbers who have perished on Kangchenjunga

Big Picture – A Bit of a Wait for Tough Climbing Conditions

I posted this yesterday but bears repeating.

Weather Outlook

I reached out to yet another world-class weather forecaster for his views on these windows. Marc De Keyser is well known throughout the climbing world for being one of the most accurate forecasters not only for mountains but also for the Antarctic. This is his view for Everest over the next week or so:

it has sure been an interesting season, weatherwise. And actually it still is. In my forecast this morning i highlited the presence of the subtropical jet stream (SJT), meandering from East China via central Nepal, NW India across the Indian Ocean towards North Africa. This feature dominates the weather conditions over the Himalayas for this period, probably till the 23rd or 24th of May.

The STJ will constantly be in the vicinity of the Himalayas: the good side of this is that the air mass does not become very unstable and it is unlikely that we will get any significant convective development (thunderstorms) during the next week – so pretty good atmospheric will prevail. However the proximity of the jet generates a situation where it is likely that the +8000mr wind has to be taken in account almost every day again.

I am pretty sure that on the 17th and the 18th wind will be far out of limits, where on the 19th the wind becomes again a bit weaker but still generating an uncomfortable feeling. And that is what i expect also for the period beyond the 19th. Winds varying around 20kt: not strong enough to cancel the climb but not weak enough to be pleasant. So i expect that it is going be tough.

Of course we all know that long range forecast are always prone for significant changes. Lets hope everyone stays safe and no significant accidents happen.

Slow Moving

In watching the climbers on Thursday morning, they moved well. If you want to understand how they are moving, this short clip from Cory Richards does a good job of showing and explaining … and remember he is climbing without supplemental oxygen, something that less that 3% of the almost 9,500 Everest summiters have done:

New Route Update: Last rotation of Acclimatization Complete

This video illustrates the reality of altitude…Climbing. Up. Hill. Slowly.

Topo and I descended from our final acclimatization rotation yesterday, seen here, and are recovering in Shegar, Tibet (altitude 14,000ft/4300m). Many have asked what the mask is that we are wearing, so here is a brief explanation:

We all loose moisture with every exhale. And being we are at altitude, which is inherently dehydrating, every drop of hydration matters. Moisture loss and dehydration can cause diminished blood flow to the muscles, reduced kidney function and fatigue (to name a few). In addition, low humidity can cause dry nasal passages which can result in the body being more susceptible to viruses and infections. Wearing a mask helps us to retain moisture and combat dehydration at a slower rate.

If you haven’t seen already. Take a gander at my instagram stories. It gives a good understanding of the winds we’ve been experiencing. @estebantopomena and I are looking forward to blue skies and little wind soon. Until then…rest and recovery.

Nepal – Summits

Summits for May 16

Summits on Wednesday, May 16, 2019 for a Thursday summits :

  • Ascent Himalaya had a good day with several people on top including Thomas Lone who summited at 4 am and Didrik Ground Dukefoss a bit later! Great job!! and several other climbers are near the summit around 7 am Nepal time including Rohit Shrestha – a friend from Colorado.
    • AH Everest Expedition 2019Team has successfully summited this morning approx 6:30 am and safely reached back to camp 4.We would like to Congratulate all our members and our Sherpa for their hard work for making it successful.
      1.Thomas Erling Lone
      2.Haakon William Skog Erlandsen
      3.Didrik Bakke Dukefoss

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3 thoughts on “Everest 2019: Summit Wave 2 Update and Recap, Kang Deaths – Update

  1. Hi Alan, any word on Seamus Sean Lawless who was on Noel Hannas` team and reached the summit this morning. May he be found safe and well.

  2. First of all congratulations all of the climbers to success their summit of Everest.
    Especially I would like to give big congratulations to mine good friends Kenton cool to his 14 times summit and Dorjee Gyaljen .

  3. Alan,I was wondering the same the same thing as Frank Rich. Very sad to hear about the 2 Indian climbers.

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