We have been making our way up the mountian over the last few days as have the combined Sherpa Climbing team.
The fixing team summitted the day before yesterday at 1430 with no wind and great conditions on the summit as our team were doing the first load crry to camp 1 to stock it with tents and other equipment.
The headwall was very sugary with deeply buried anchors – it was slow going as we were only having 2 people on each section of fixed line to ensure that the anchors would hold in the still consolidating snow pack.
The team were carrying their mountain bags, sleeping systems and cooking equipment up to camp 1 – this will allow us to have easier rotations in the days ahead.
The views were (again) just magnificient and the headwall only slightly steeper than 60 degrees at the top – much easier than in past years.
With the line fixed to the sumit the way is now open for us to make a summit push in the next week – but before we do that we will be doing 1 more cycle to camp 1 to give the team a chance to negotiate the steep rock tower in daylight first before we do an alpine start on our summit day which is likely to be either the 1st or the second of November if the weather continues to hold.
Its only because of the other 2 teams here that we have been able to look at having a shorter time period for our expeditions. with only 1 team here it would have taken at least 8 days for our Sherpa team alone to fix rope to the summit!
Tomorrow we have an early breakfast and then begin the walk back up to the start of the glacier and the climb to camp 1.