It’s taken us a while but we are most certainly now at Ama Dabalam Basecamp. It took some of us (me) an extra day to get here after being laid low by the gatro bug. Not much fun at all but normally at least one person on an expedition gets it.
After an extra days rest at Pangboche I made my way up to an awesome basecamp with the rest of the team fizzing at the site of the SW ridge hanging above us. They were slightly less fizzing about the large avalanche that they had heard during the night – but it was quite some distance away and not on the route so no harm done there.
There are a number of other expeditions in basecamp – all in different stages of readiness. There is also quite a large amount of snow. We are all camping amongst it actually. It makes for an easier walk up and down the mountain and a much easier time of getting water higher up but it does present problems with sunburn.
After a quick walk around the place yesterday up to about 5000m the crew all got ready for our first push up the hill. We were thinking of going to Camp 1 (5750 ish) but with heavy loads of climbing gear – mtn sleeping bags – thermarests and other gear we only made it up to Yak Camp (5400m) before setting up a tent and storing our gear, boiling some water drinking in the view and then heading down back to Basecamp (4600m).
We are currently prepping to head back up the mountain tomorrow for 3 days. We’ll go to Yak camp and stay the night before moving up to camp 1 where we will make a foray out along the ridge towards camp 2 before coming back to camp 1 for a seconds nights sleep then descending back to Basecamp for a rest and to watch the weather in preparation for a summit push.