Sunday, November 2, 2008

Ericsson and Aamot failed at Kangchenjunga

"No summit on Kangchenjunga
The first day of our summit push on Kangchenjunga gave a big surprise. The weather was nice, the snow was solid to climb on and we were moving easily up to “The Hump“ at 6200 meters where the site for our first camp was. Only one problem, there was no tent where we left it a week ago. The wind had taken it for a little flight about a hundred meters away and dumped it into a crevasse. Luckily we found it and it wasn’t too damaged. A bit of duct tape could fix it.
The second day was a windy day. We made it up to 6800 meters before we got sick of the wind and found a nice crevasse to put our tent in to hide from the wind.
On the third day came the second surprise. Snowfall and whiteout. Totally opposite from the bluebird that the weather forecast promised. Without visibility we became spectators, sitting in our crevasse all day watching the snow piling up outside. The next morning the sun was shining again but it was also 50 cm of fresh snow on the ground. Bearing in mind the previous week of storm winds blasting the snow cover. The fresh snow on top made it ideal for avalanches. The decision to not continue towards the summit was easy to make but it wasn’t fun. We had to give up our hopes for the summit of Kangchenjunga.
Standing at 6800 meters we had 1300 vertical meters of powder skiing ahead of us. But to make it down without getting avalanched we had to use all our experience and all the tricks in the book. There were some scary sections but mostly we could enjoy nice powder turns on one of the world highest mountains in the world. I am disappointed that we didn’t reach the summit but at the same time relieved that we made it down safely. We had a great experience in a beautiful environment and I will definitely return one day to make a new attempt on Kangchenjunga.
We are now packing our gear and getting ready for the week long hike back to civilization Looking forward to a Pizza in Kathmandu
".