The rope fixing team made the summit on Friday, May 7, 2021, opening the route to the over 300 climbers left at base camp. The weather remains good, for Everest, so look for many teams to jump on this window. Meanwhile, it appears that the virus spread has stalled for the moment with no new cases reported at EBC for over a week. It’s unknown if this is real or more coverups.
The Nepal government announced plans to assist climbers in leaving Nepal and another ban on any negative news saying “as it could terrorise the mountaineers as well as their family members.” I think someone climbing Everest can handle the truth.
Teams continued their acclimatization climbs with many “tagging” Camp 3. Anticipating the ropes reaching the summit, a few teams left base camp to be in position for their summit bid. The Bahrain team is at camp 2 aiming to summit on Tuesday, May 11. Meanwhile, in spite of a ban on helicopter flights throughout Nepal, along with closing the airports to prevent more virus spread, choppers are ferrying climbers from base camp to Namache or Luklas for a “holiday.” I touched on this already with “touching grass”. I’m talking to several people in Namache who say they are isolating, wearing masks but enjoying more oxygen than is available at base camp.
The jet stream may make a comeback so this next week could be the best time for summit bids. Meteorologist Chris Tomer tells me it may pick back up around the 13th and 14th. Some models show very high winds after the 20th.
Look for Seven Summits Treks to have a massive number of summits next week. They have 130 clients this year. Also scores from the almost 20 other Nepali-owned guide companies. Some have large teams like Himalayan Guides with 29, others with just a couple of clients. Several of the US and European guide companies are in a position to the summit. I expect to see them move to Camp 2 to be n position in the next few days.
The Other 8000ers
Dhaulagiri – COVID Evuacations and Summit Bids
With the weather finally improving climbing has started but not before over 20 people, both clients and Sherpa, have been evacuated from base camp with COVID symptoms. The large Annapurna team hosted by Seven Summits Treks is at base camp and will start their climb soon. Peter Hamor, Horia Colibasanu, and Marius Gane have started their return to the Northwest Ridge where they left off hoping to complete this first. And Topo Mena and Carla Pérez left BC a few days ago and are somewhere above C2. Finally 82-year-old Carlos Soriais still there apparently healthy and will start his bid soon. Won’t surprise me if we see everyone join forces like on Annapurna. Let’s hope they bring enough rope this time.
On a mission to clean base camp, the Nepal Army evacuated three of its soldiers. For spring 2021, 35 (now less with the evacuations) foreign climbers spread across five expeditions will attempt Dhaulagiri plus an equal number of Sherpas. There are six Nepali women there, all of who summited Annapurna last month. Overall there are now between 70 and 80 people on Dhaulagiri.
The third 8000er on tap this spring may see summits on the 11 th
Memories are Everything
Here’s the video version of this weekend update:
The Podcast on alanarnette.com
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