Back In Base Camp

May 13th, Base Camp

The whole team is back in base camp this evening, the last of the Sherpa are rolling in this afternoon. We all had a great and worthwhile break down in Dingboche, and we’re feeling good and ready to go when we get our window of good weather. All of the climbers actually elected to pitch in for a helicopter ride back to base camp to save a couple of days of trekking and be in base camp ready to go for the next possible summit window. It’s less than 10 minutes by helicopter to get back from Dingboche, and a good solid day to walk that distance. We did feel a touch of guilt, not walking back up here, but it was a beautiful flight and that soon passed.

The focus of conversation around camp, and the dining table, is the weather forecasts and we are watching them very carefully now. There have been many summits in the last few days, and several teams have also turned around due to marginal weather conditions and forecasts. We congratulate the teams that reached the top safely, and watch them roll back into base camp with a bit of envy that their job here is done. Some of the teams and climbers that had to turn around on their summit bid in the last several days will not get another chance as they’ll be tired, and likely have used up their supply of Oxygen on the first try. It’s a bit of a gamble any time you put your resources into a summit bid, we’re hoping for a promising forecast that gives us some more confidence in committing to going up for a try. For now, we’re all healthy and rested and ready to go when the opportunity presents itself. We are still right on schedule as our plan was to be ready to move up for a summit window starting in the next week.

We’re getting back into the routine of base camp for now, it is quite comfortable here, and has become our home on the glacier. We’ll start getting into the evening movie routine here tonight after dinner with most of the Sherpa joining us around a laptop for movie night in the Sling Fin.

That’s all for now from Everest Base Camp.

Bill Allen

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