Everest 2013 | Teams Arrive at Base Camp

First stage of Everest quest, the long march to the foot of mountain that started earlier this month, concluded a few days back with the arrival of all teams at Base Camp. The long trek through Khumbu Valley consumed around a week and helped the mountaineers in getting acquainted with altitude and environment. The trek serves as primary acclimatization stage before the actual climb and acclimatization rotations. Meanwhile, the rituals like Puja have also been performed and teams are all set to start the climb.

First Pakistani Female on Everest
It would be a historical moment in Pakistan's climbing and mountaineering arena, when Samina Khayyal Baig starts negotiating the Khumbu Ice Fall in a couple of days, as a part of her acclimatization trip. She will be the first female from Pakistan to set her feet on a mountain that rises more than eight thousand meters above sea level (the 8000ers). Samina Baig is part of Gender Equality Expedition to Everest 2013 and is climbing with Seven Summit Treks team. Her brother Mirza Ali is also part of expedition. They will be climbing via South Col route. Team reached BC on 9th April, in a happy and healthy mood, without any major disturbance so far. You can read daily updates here. As reported, their internet connection at BC isn't operational yet but daily reports should resume by the end of this week. They await a go ahead from expedition manager to start Everest climb. Meanwhile they had a hike to Kala Pathar (5545m) few days back.

Image Source: pakyouthreach

Simone Moro and Ueli Steck
As per latest communique, the Moro-Steck duo is also at Base Camp. Detailed plans of Simone Moro and Ueli Steck are still not known. Steck says that the task of the moment is to get used to the thin air. They will be making some acclimatization climbs and would be testing their strength, before revealing the actual task of No2Limits Expedition, which is supposed to be something interesting on a different route. They will be enjoying the acclimatization process with their Russain friends Denis Urubko and Alex.

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At work; Location Namache; Image Source uelisteck

Denis Urubko and Alexey Bolotov
Russian duo Denis and Alex were amongst the first climbers to reach Kathmandu but last to reach EBC. This is because they were busy in acclimatizing on other peaks, spending nights at 5800m, 6700m and 7000m on different mountains. Such a hard-core acclimatization is required as they are up against one of the biggest tasks of mountaineering - to Everest top via new route, alpine style, without Oxygen and support. Read the Explorer's Web article by Andrey Verkhovod, which presents the complete details of Everest SW Face New Route climb.
After the initial rounds of aforementioned acclimatization trips, Alex and Denis had a couple days of rest at Namache before trekking to BC. They reached BC on 13th, where they were welcomed by Simone Moro and Ueli Steck. The plan is to ascend to South Col, before going for new route.

Denis Urubko
After the rough acclimatization; Image source: russianclimb


Others on Everest
In spring season, Everest is a very busy mountain with summit-count averaging 500+ since past few years. Climber and a fighter against Alzheimers, Alan Arnette can safely be termed as finest resource on Everest. As per data compiled by him, there are 47 teams on Everest South side with the count of climbers and Sherpa staff exceeding 1000 this year. Moreover 7 teams are on North side, with total climbers & support staff count reaching 200.

Here are a few more Everest climbs, this season. (I am also trying to compile a list of major climbs/climbers attempting Everest and other Himalayan peaks this spring.)

  1. Yuichiro Miura (80) from Japan hopes to become the oldest person to summit Everest. His current position is not known.
  2. Spanish Carlos Pauner is climbing Everest to complete his 14x8000er quest; 31st person to do so. He reached Namche Bazar on 10th April.
  3. But Silvio Mondinelli has already completed his 14x8000ers and is accompanying a friend for this attempt from north side. He was 13th person to conquer all 8000ers; 6th to do so without using bottled oxygen.
  4. Ivan Vallejo, Carla Perez, Esteban Mena, Oswaldo Freire, Rafael Caceres would try to be first All Ecuadorians team to summit without Oxygen. They must be reaching BC soon, if aren't there already.
  5. Edita Nichols, the only Lithuanian lady with two 8000er summits, would be first female from her country to summit Everest. She is climbing with AltitudeJunkies and has reached Everest North Base Camp.
  6. Maria Conceicao is climbing Everest to raise funds for Maria Cristina Foundation. Foundation helps slum children in India and Bangladesh. She is in BC.

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