Friday, 15 October 2010

The Scent of Adventure

 Pictures: A rather snowy scene this morning at BC, Matt and Pete testing their high altitude clothing.

Today has been a rest day, so Matt and Nick have both been busy writing - enjoy

Matt's Blog

Lying in my tent this morning waiting for the warmth of the sun to hit BC to encourage us from our bags as it always does at 8am, but this morning for the first time since we have been here it was gloomy with a fresh dump of the white stuff on the ground.

After a day of needed rest, the weather has cleared for a few hours allowing us to prepare for our outing in the morning. Sorting the climbing rack, clothing and the food for the route, which mainly consists of Maximuscle Viper and Promax bars.

The plan tomorrow is to carry a heavy load to our high point from a few days back, dig a snow cave on the ridge and load this with some of the gear and food we will need to take on the east ridge using the snow cave as an advanced base camp.  Depending on time we will hopefully descent back to BC tomorrow night for a good night's sleep before we take it on to the next stage!

That said it's pouring down outside now, which means quite a bit of snow up high.

If you have been following us, you will know that freelance journalist Ed Douglas travelled with us into BC for a few days to write a piece for the Times newspaper.  Ed's personal view of the expedition should make the Times this Saturday and I guess we will have to wait until we get back to the UK to see what he has written!

Nick's Blog: The Scent of Adventure




Post monsoon Kathmandu has the smell of success. When I say success, what I mean is the climbing team are all together in the same city; boots have made it, tents made it, the cameraman David Reeves made it. I threatened Alastair Lee that if David turned out to be a knob I would be hot footing it to Sheffield. But in this new sweet smelling scenario David is a cool guy. The climbing gear is packed - the electronics are packed - the food is packed - the Camera batteries are charged - the climbers are charged - Ed Douglas is charged - the Samsung notebook has Google Earth downloaded onto the hard drive - the helicopter is washed and waiting - the pilot Pemba from Air Dynasty is not only excited to land in a valley he has not landed in before, but he is psyched - and Loben has employed Buddhi, the best cook in the world, who is driving to Pokhara tomorrow with a van full of gear and food and cook equipment. Success is a thousand miles away, but still, the smell of a dream going right is Apple Pie.


A week and a day later.


Its possibly been the worst weather yet today. But as we have hardly spoken of weather this will mean, not-a-lot.  Snow fell through the night and after a brief spell of broken cloud and sun, we now have wet sleet. Since changing objectives from the Southeast Ridge to the East Ridge success feels a long way off. A lot of suffering is to come. The East Ridge of A3 is truly a Himalayan giant taken direct from the pages of Venibles and Fanshaw's masterpiece, Himalayan Alpine Style. It is a massive challenge which may have several layers of scent, some will be bitter, some sweet, some sharp, maybe even ammonia, but be sure an adventure will be had.


Bags are now packed, tomorrow, we are ready to repeat the 1300m of ascent, from two days ago. Success will be reaching our high point with a stash of climbing gear, food, gas, clothes, sleeping bags, a shovel, a stove and excess air in our lungs. We hope to dig a snow hole big enough for the three of us, stash the kit and return to BC all in the day.


Tomorrow will only be truly successful and smell Pomegranate sweet when the red glow of our mess tent is spied from the heathery moraine above BC, David's bright light sat atop his camera draws us and the whoop of Buddhi calling us home is heard.



1 comment:

  1. Article in the times on the weekend Fellas - nice piece - got us all inspired!!