Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Live from Camp 2!

We just arrived in Camp 2 at about 21,500 ft. It was a beautiful day, and we had a good climb up through the icefall. There were a lot of people moving up today, over 100 at least.

We have been playing a game of cat and mouse with the weather over the last few days. The forecast high winds yesterday and today really did not happen. Yesterday saw a number of teams reach the summit in what looked like a short window in between a wandering jet stream. Today was quite a bit better than forecast. Still predictions show more wind on the way for the next several days. We are carefully watching all information available. We are still confident that the decrease in winds forecast over the 22, 23, 24 will hold a good summit day for us. But we also have our Quiji board, tarot cards and our lucky dice!

We are not being elusive with exactly when we are going, it's just as the date gets closer, the forecasts become much more accurate. To say we are going on the 24th would be reckless as things are changing rapidly by the day. One factor that will play a big role over the next week is a large tropical depression that's formed in the Bay of Bengal and basically is heading our way. We may see precip and clouds from this as early as the 21st. This is the same type of storm that shut the mountain down last year with a lot of snow! It is way to early to predict what will happen with this, but we are watching closely.

The team is doing well, everyone made good time up to C2 today. Our plan is to rest here tomorrow as it's a big jump up from Base Camp. We will carefully evaluate the weather tomorrow and try to see a clearer picture of what will happen over the next week.

Life here at Camp 2 is good. We have 2 Sherpa cook staff, a very nice Mountain Hardware Stronghold tent for dining, solar power, email, internet, and all of us have our own tents. It is about as comfortable as possible considering the temps will be around -10c tonight and we are sitting at over 21,500 ft!

More tomorrow!

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