Spring 2013 | Manaslu, Cho Oyu | Difficult Conditions on Manaslu, Going Strong on Cho Oyu

During spring climbing season Everest remains the epicenter of attention. Hundreds of climbers share regular updates using the improved internet facilities on both sides. Teams on other peaks with less frequent dispatches often get little media coverage. Same has been happening with Manaslu and Cho Oyu  expeditions, this season.

Manaslu (8163m)

Catalonians on their First 8000er
Two Catalonians Raul Corominas and Peter Herms reached Manaslu BC (4830m) very early in the season (on 4th April). They witnessed more snow and no big crowd as anticipated. In fact they were all alone at BC. Without wasting any time, the duo started the climb on 5th, reaching 5400m before returning to BC. Next day, they established C1 at 5700m. After a couple of days of rest at BC, they went up again and reached 5950m; spent the following night in C1 hoping to climb further. But weather deteriorated and they had to retreat to BC again. After a week of snow, fog and bad weather, they were planning to go up and establish C2 and C3 at 6200m and 6800m respectively. No updates are available from the team after 18th April.
Neither Raul nor Peter has climbed an 8000er before but have ample experience from peaks outside Asia. Mountain guiding is amongst one of Raul's jobs. Peter is a writer, director and has produced several social documentaries in African region. During this expedition, they will be making a 60 minutes documentary titled, "The men who wanted to climb a mountain over 8,000 meters".

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Snowy conditions on Manaslu high camp; source: Satori Expeditions

Satori Adventures and Expeditions
Satori Expeditions team attempting Manaslu is also reporting tough conditions on the mountain. On 10th May they reported that high winds and deep snow have made climbing extremely demanding.

There are also reports about presence of at least one more team attempting Manaslu.


Cho Oyu (8201m)
There are four teams attempting Cho Oyu this season. It’s reported that one international expedition had to leave the mountain because of expired resources.

Summit Club Expedition
Their team consists of nine foreign members, including Wayne Herrick, Debbie Markham, John Martersteck of Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) who are just starting their 8000er careers. The team reached Cho Oyu BC on 29th April and immediately moved to ABC. Few days of stay at ABC (5700m) not just helped the climbers adjusting in thin air but also provided them an opportunity to practice ice climbing on pinnacles next to ABC. On 4th May, team touched C1 (6400m) as first rotation. In next step, they spent one night in C1 and climbed to C2(6850m).

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Route up Cho Oyu; source: Satori Expeditions

Satori Adventures and Expeditions
Dan Nash of Satori Expeditions shared details about Cho Oyu Expedition. As per him team is ready for summit push, leaving BC on 10th or 11th May. After successful completion of several rotation trips and all higher camps being well equipped, the team is feeling strong and positive about reaching summit.

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Porter on the way to C1 - Photo: Mark Van't Hof

An expedition with nine members from UK (Charles Masters), Sweden, British, Jordan and Spain also reached C1 on Cho Oyu, last week. It was photographer and trekker Charles Masters’ first 8000er expedition but he has left the expedition prematurely, because of rough conditions. One Spanish member of the team suffered from AMS and has to be evacuated to Kathmandu. No further details are available about team’s progress.

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