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Everest View Glacier School, Basecamp Trek, Island Peak Nepal climbing trekking news spring 09

 
(Photos in slideshow: Valerie Hovland, Tunc Findik, Elselien te Hennepe, Bruce Manning, & Preston Stroud)
News of our recent expedition: Everest View Glacier School, Everest Basecamp Trek & Island Peak Climb
Spring 2009
29 March to 19 April, 2009

View our links for more information about our upcoming Everest View Glacier Schools . We are now accepting applications for the October 2009 and spring 2010 trips, so please join us.

Dispatches: Please click one of the links below to go directly to that dispatch or just scroll down.

26 May 2009

Hello everyone, this is Raj, the leader of the Everest base camp trek and Everest View glacier school reporting in.

I am pleased to inform you that our Everest View Glacier School team summited Lobuche East successfully  on 15th May at 11:50 am. We then went on to summit Island Peak on 20 May at 9:00 a.m. The summiters were Ridlon Kiphart and Dennis Nichols from the USA. Congratulations! Also, our awesome trekking members had a great time and made it back safely to Kathmandu a few days ago. Thanks for following along our expedition. Bye.

  A sherpa looking down the route of Lobuche East from just below the summit (Valerie Hovland). Everest view from Lobuche (Keith Whelan).

14 May 2009

Hello everyone, this is Raj, the leader of the Everest base camp trek and Everest View glacier school reporting in.

The members of the Everest View Glacier School reached Lobuche Base Camp on 13th, May.

The weather did not seem to be good for a few days, but today the weather turned nice. The team members are in good shape, healthy and doing well. We are very excited to climb the mountain after working on our glacier skills in the Cho La.

We are heading to Lobuche East High Camp today from the Lobuche Base Camp. If the weather remains good tomorrow, we will push for the summit . Wish us luck and thank you for following along our expedition.

Team members on the Cho La Glacier having fun. Climbers near the summit of Lobuche East (Valerie Hovland).

11 May 2009

Hello everyone, this is Raj, the leader of the Everest base camp trek and Everest View glacier school reporting in.

7 May: The members of the Everest View Glacier School and Everest Base Camp trek reached to Pheriche from Dingboche. The members seemed to be happy and relaxed. They stayed a night in Pheriche.

8 May: The members set off for Thukla from Pheriche. The members climbed to Dingboche Ri ( 5000 metres/16,400 feet ).The members reached Thukla. They spent a night over there and were in good shape.

9 May : The members of the Everest View Glacier School and Everest Base Camp split in the morning from Thukla.

Now, the Everest View Glacier Team headed to Jungla led by Rajen Thapa Magar ( Team Leader ) . And the Everest Base Camp Team headed to Lobuche led by Mingma Tenzing Sherpa ( Team leader ).

The Everest View Glacier School Team reached their destination of Jungla and spent the night there.

The Everest Base Camp Team reached Lobuche and spent the night there. back to top

 

Below Lobuche East basecamp. From here it is a short hike to the lake where basecamp is established before starting for the summit. Behind them is Lobuche East in the distance (Valerie Hovland). Ama Dablam seen from the Cho La pass (Squash Falconer).

7 May 2009

Hello everyone, this is Raj, the leader of the Everest base camp trek and Everest View glacier school reporting from Namche.

Our flight to Lukla on 3rd was delayed due to some bad weather. After almost waiting for five hours at the Kathmandu airport, the weather cleared up and we took off to Lukla at 11:00am.

After resting few hours in Lukla while our support staff packed all the gears and equipment, we started our trek to Phakding. By evening we were in one of the tea houses where we had a delicious dinner and ready to go to bed.
 
May 4th: Our trek started at eight in the morning, where we hiked up the Dudh Koshi valley and followed the river to Monjo for lunch. After Monjo, we stopped at the Sagarmatha park office where we had to show our permit, and continued our trek to Namche. We arrived at Namche at four in the afternoon. It was a good two hours uphill, which everyone did very well.

We wandered around the town where they sell souvenirs and have an internet cafe. We found Namche to be very quiet, even at this time of the peak climbing and trekking season. The tea houses looked quiet with not many trekkers coming in.

We had a good dinner where my mother in law prepared a delicious meal for all of us and we are staying in her hotel, Thamerku View Lodge.
 
May 5th: Some of us woke up very early at 5:00 in the morning to get the first view of the mountains. After breakfast, we headed to Syangboche where there is an airstrip at 3800 meters and went to the Everest view hotel where we saw Everest, Thamserku, Lhotse and Amadablam. The views were just spectacular. On the way back, we visited the Sherpa Everest museum and returned back to Namche where we all met for lunch.

Everyone is doing well, and in good spirits. Tommorow we will be leaving for Thyangboche. It's going to be a nice five hour walk with a good two hours uphill, but we plan to go slowly. bhistaray bhistaray ( a word for slow in Nepali which everyone likes).  back to top

Namche Bazaar, the capital of the Sherpa people. See this unique village on our trek to and from basecamp (Tunc Findik).

17 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Mark Hetherington calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School to report on the 13th to the 17th of April, following the successful summit climb of Lobuche East.

Two groups split up after the climb with one going to Everest basecamp and the other going across the Cho La pass. We all met up again today on the 17th at Namche Bazaar and are getting ready to head down to Lukla.

Dan, Squash, and Keith had been up to the Khumbu Icefall and Everest Basecamp. According to Keith, it had been something like being on the moon. After playing cards with other Everest Basecamp climbers, they left very late and got into Pheriche after dark. It was then another long trek for them to Namche in time for a beer with the others.

The Cho La Pass team was Mia, Irma, Gary, and yours truly, guided by our impeccable and great sherpa leaders. The Cho La Pass was a revelation to all, showing the dramatic difference between the Khumbu and Gokyo regions. The summit of Gokyo Ri at the end of the pass was difficult and rewarding. The views from the top of the peak could be some of the most spectacular in the world. 2 hours up and 1 hour down is probably one of the best investments one could make.

We then dashed to Dole through beautiful scenery. Dole to Namche was a surprise on two counts, including a massive climb when we were supposed to be going downhill and a beautiful forest section of rhododendrons.

The climax of these two days for both groups was the reunion tonight in the café at Namche Bazaar: starring ‘Keith the killer smile’, ‘Dan the danger man’, ‘Squash’, Irma the indestructible’, ‘Mia the main woman’, and ‘Gary the Goliath’.

What could one ask for more? back to top

This is SummitClimb, a lot of great men and women from around the world (Keith Whelan). Karma, Dan, Squash, Mark and Phoebe in Cho La basecamp (Keith Whelan). Keith and Squash on the 6119 metre summit of Lobuche East on 12 april at 12:30 (Keith Whelan). Squash on the practice ladder behind the ice fall doctor's tent at Everest basecamp (Squash Falconer).

16 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling for SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for the 16th of April.

We had a really good time last night. It was our final night with the Everest and Lhotse climbing team, who are leaving to go up the mountain to camp 1 with Sam and company and all of the sherpas. We said goodbye to them and sent them off with a really good dinner party and then went to bed early.

This morning on the 16th our trek team got up early and walked way up into the ice-fall with just our trekking gear and one of our sherpas as a guide. We were very safe, took a lot of photos, and met a lot of the climbers going up and down the ice-fall. It was a really incredible thing to do, seeing the ice-fall up close like that and spending some time wandering around in there. It’s just so big, massive and amazing. We were so lucky to be able to do that just as trekkers.

After spending a few hours there at the bottom of the ice-fall, we walked back down to basecamp, had a delicious breakfast, packed our things, and picked up our laundry, which was freshly washed and pressed by our sherpa Karma. We took a nice hot shower made by the kitchen staff and then headed down and started walking out.

We walked back down the Khumbu Glacier, out to Gorak Shep, then the village of Lobuche, down through Dughla, and finally ended up in Pheriche at a lovely teahouse. We had a delicious dinner and rested our legs after such a nice long walk. Luckily it was all downhill on good trails. Then we went to bed.

Thanks for following our trek. Take care. Bye, bye. back to top

Practicing on ropes and ladders in the icefall (Arnold Coster).

15 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling for SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for the 15th of April.

Today we got up a little late, had a delicious breakfast, and walked through basecamp down to the Everest Basecamp Bakery. We had some cinnamon rolls, apple pie, pan chocolate or chocolate croissants, and some delicious coffee. All along the way back to basecamp we stopped and visited with friends we knew. We had another amazing lunch prepared by the excellent SummitClimb cooks.

In the afternoon we went to visit the Everest Basecamp Hospital and met the very kind doctors over there and toured their facility. We also had a meeting with the Icefall Doctors, the sherpas that fix the ladders in the ice-fall, and learned about their plans to keep our team safe.

We then went through the upper end of basecamp and toured around visiting all of the teams and friends we knew. It was a great day in basecamp then we went to bed early, so we kind of had a really good rest day.

Thanks for following along our expedition. Bye, bye. back to top

The medical tent in Eeverest basecamp. Dale Wagner, our summit climb team member, standing in front (Dan Mazur). Everest Basecamp Bakery (Keith Whelan).

14 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling for SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for Tuesday the 14th of April.

Last night we went to bed in the village of Lobuche at a beautiful teahouse where we met some great new friends, including Ash and Tanya from the UK, who have been living in New Zealand. We also met Elliot, Zenka, Heather, and Nikkos from Michigan.

We had lots of fun playing cards with them and shared dinner around the table at the teahouse. It was a really good time. Then we went to bed and had a great sleep.

We got up this morning around 8:30, had a delicious breakfast, and walked up to the moraine with spectacular views of the Khumbu Icefall. We walked right beneath Lobuche Peak, which was really special and got to Gorak Shep. We enjoyed a delicious lunch with the lodge owner, Mr. Chirring, and sat around and had a wonderful time.

Along the way we met some really cool people trekking named Paul and Karen from Big Bear. We had some great laughs and played cards with them at lunch. It was a really relaxing rest in the afternoon.

Then at about 2:00 we set off from Gorak Shep and made our way among the trails up to basecamp. There were wonderful views and it was really interesting walking along the glacial moraines, over the ice, and past glacial lakes. We took our first pictures of basecamp.

One of our porters, Karma, went ahead and found our camp where we’re going to stay with the SummitClimb team. He then walked back along the glacier and brought us hot fresh tea before guiding us back in to our basecamp, which would have been tough to find because there are about 36 teams.

It’s really quite amazing because there is only one Mt Everest and one basecamp. It’s really incredible to experience this uneven terrain with lots of ice pinnacles, rocks spread like a veneer over solid ice, lots of glacial lakes, and all of these little basecamps coming out of the rocks and perched atop piles of boulders.

We came to the SummitClimb basecamp and met up with the whole team. Everybody here seems like they are doing great. It was a really happy reunion. They greeted us with hot tea and they had our tents set up for us. We each had our own tent. It was really quite an amazing welcome and then they served us a really delicious dinner. They made a special delicious cake for us as well, which was super nice, decorated with frosting. What a surprise!

We hung out with the Mt Everest and Mt Lhotse climbing team and it was really special to be trekking along and come into this big basecamp and be so welcome.

That’s the end of our dispatch for today. We’re looking forward to sending another one in tomorrow. Thank you very much. Bye, bye. back to top

 

 

Our comfortable and fun SummitClimb Everest Basecamp (Keith Whelan). Walking around in the bottom of the Khumbu icefall at 5400 metres (Keith Whelan). Keith, Dale, Richard, Roger, Jason, Vik, Domnhall, Josette, David, Sam, Squash, Karen and Paul enjoying a delicious lunch together at the Summit cCimb tent in Everest basecamp (Squash Falconer). SummitClimb basecamp (Squash Falconer).

13  April, 2009

Update: The Island Peak team summited today and are on their way back to Namche Bazaar. Congratulations!

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling from SummitClimb.com & SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for 13 April, 2009.

Today was the final day of our Everest View Glacier School. With some regrets, we got up this morning, packed all of our bags and had a final farewell breakfast. Then our team split into 3 parts with Irma, Mia, Gary and Mark going over the Cho La pass with Ang Sange Sherpa and some porters. Then our glacier school leader, Abi, is going back down to Lukla together with King, the famous Maya Sherpa, and some porters. Keith and Squash are heading up to Everest basecamp together with some porters.

We were so sorry to say goodbye to each other, but that’s life up here in the Khumbu. We look forward to continuing our dispatches from the Everest basecamp trek. We’ll keep you posted.

We have some special exciting news to report today. Our Everest Tibet team has received their permit and they’re heading for Kodari and Zhangmu. Everything is looking good for them to climb Everest from Tibet, so we’re incredibly excited for them. After they’ve worked so hard, walked all the way to basecamp on the Nepal side for acclimatization while they were waiting for the permit to come through, flew back from Lukla to Kathmandu, waited for 2 additional days, everyone is so relieved that they are finally ready to enter Tibet in a couple hours. Congratulations! Way to show a lot of patience and perseverance. That’s what it takes to climb these big mountains, I guess.

We’ll be in touch and thanks for following us. Take care. Bye, bye. back to top

 

A sherpa looking down the route of Lobuche East from just below the summit (Valerie Hovland). Everest view from Lobuche (Keith Whelan).

12 April, 2009

The whole team summits! Calls live from the top of Lobuche East.

Team reports in live part 1 (click here to listen)

Team reports in live part 2 (click here to listen)

Team reports in live part 3 (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Squash Falconer calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 12th of April.

It’s five past 12:00 p.m. and I’m calling this dispatch from the summit of Lobuche. All right!

We got up at half past 2:00 this morning, left the high camp at 3:30 a.m., and all got to the top. Some members of the group got to the true summit and some to the south summit, but we all got up here.

Everybody is in really good spirits. It’s been a fantastic day. We’ve had incredible weather for summit day, no winds, just sunshine, and it is just fantastic.

Oh yeah. It’s also Easter Sunday and we’ve had Easter eggs at the top. Bye.

 

 

Mia and King coming down from the summit of Lobuche East (Dan Mazur). Squash working her way up to the summit of Lobuche East, 6119 metres (Dan Mazur). Keith at 5700 metres on summit morning. In the background is a feature formed in melted snow known as sun cups (Keith Whelan).

...

Part 2 - 

Hi, this is Keith Whelan calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 12th of April.

We are reporting from the summit of Lobuche East. We are happy to report that all 8 of us summited to the top of Lobuche. It was definitely a very difficult hike for every single one of us. Step by step we made it up to the top and we are very pleased and happy with what we’ve accomplished today. Thanks for following our expedition. Bye.

 

Gary at 5850 metres at about 11 am on Sunday April 12th, 2009 (Keith Whelan). Squash videoing the Everest view from Lobuche (Keith Whelan).

Part 3 -  

Hi, this is Mark Hetherington calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 12th of April, Easter Sunday 2009.

2:30 a.m.: wake, tea, prepare, noodle soup, prepare, pack, ready.

3:55: depart, Abi leads, I’m second, nice team, harness slips, slow others, panic, Abi helps, safe. Steep, snow, ice, rocks, icy rocks, through snow and rocks, careful. Crampons on, steeper, deeper, 45 degrees, 60 degrees, steady. Dangerous ridge, rope up together. I lead, Abi coaches behind, long steep walk, rest, walk, rest, walk, rest, walk. Fixed rope. I’m too slow for others, let them pass. Fixed rope, up, up, up, rest, up. 60 degrees, 75 degrees, step, big step, trust crampon, step, rest. Abi catches up, promises fish and chips on the summit, rest, step, rest. Final push, summit, elation, view, wonderment, Everest, Lhotse, beauty, achievement, hardest thing ever, done, thanks. back to top

 

Sangay Sherpa standing on the sub summit of Lobuche (Dan Mazur).Phi Lama Tamang, our awesome climbing sherpa and 'Top Gun' rope fixer on the summit of Lobuche East (Dan Mazur).

11 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Gary White calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 11th of April.

I’m reporting in from high camp and am looking at the sun setting right now on Nuptse, Cholatse, and Ama Dablam, which is pretty far out.

Today was our first real day of rest. All of the other rest days have included hikes up and down mountains, abseiling, etcetera, so this was really appreciated.

According to the group, the highlights of the day were food related, breakfast and lunch. I’ve never seen such a food focused group, most of them female. In between, Dan did a session on mountain health with its effects and cures. The Gamow Bag came out with Keith the American acting as guinea pig. After being taken down to 3300 metres/11,000 feet he didn’t want to come back up to 5000 metres/16,400 feet. We couldn’t work out why. Oxygen was also shared with most everyone.

Did I say rest day? We then hiked up to 5300 metres/17,400 feet to Lobuche high camp, where good time was made according to our leader Abi. We are settled and eating again and going to bed by 7:00 p.m. to be ready by 2:30 a.m. for our summit attempt on a full moon. It doesn’t get any better than this. Wish us luck. back to top

 

 

Putting on our crampons at the crampon point on the way up to Lobuche Peak, summit morning 5 am, Sunday, 12 April (Dan Mazur). Team roped together for glacier travel at 5650 metres on Lobuche East (Dan Mazur). Irma, Mia and King on the Cho La pass (Squash Falconer). Keith practicing abseiling above Lobuche basecamp (Squash Falcomer).

10 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Keith Whelan calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 10th of April.

All is definitely good in our world. We started the day with the best gift ever. We got to sleep in. It’s been a long while since we’ve had a late morning. It’s nice to wake up to the sunshine warming up your tent.

Today we trekked about 2 hours from Cho La basecamp to our new home at Lobuche Peak basecamp. The weather was great today with blue skies and awesome views compared to the blizzard we had yesterday, where we easily received 7-10 cm/3-4 inches of snow.

This afternoon we ran some ropes up to the mountain and practiced our ascending and descending skills. We’ll need these to summit Lobuche East on Easter Sunday. We’re getting the hang of it, literally.

We’re all well, healthy, and happy and a bit excited about what the next few days will hold for us. Our spirits are high, especially with the hilarious stories Mark told us at dinner tonight and we’ve bonded together as a really strong and great group.

We send our love. Please keep us in your thoughts. The next few days will definitely be difficult for us, but we’re ready for them. Thanks everyone. Take care. back to top

 

Below Lobuche East basecamp. From here it is a short hike to the lake where basecamp is established before starting for the summit. Behind them is Lobuche East in the distance (Valerie Hovland). Ama Dablam seen from the Cho La pass (Squash Falconer).

9 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Mark Hetherington calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 9th of April.

As the name of the trip implies, today was our second day trekking on the Cho La glacier. It was actually the first day for me because I wasn’t feeling too good the day before. I had reckoned it was altitude sickness, but we’re only at 5000 metres/16,400 feet, so maybe it was something else.

Just like yesterday, we had a 2 hour slog up to the glacier using ropes and crampons some of the way. Unlike yesterday, which was sunny, we had snow all day and blizzards at times, so nobody got hot.

We trained belaying descents and ascents, abseiling fixed rope, ascending, and tying knots. Everybody did everything really well and our leader, Dan the man, was amazed that we all put in an 8 ½ hour day in such conditions.

Our strong and friendly sherpas supported the team very well. Gary White was whiter than ever, Yankee Keith couldn’t stop smiling, Hong Kong King danced up and down everything, the Finnish girls, Irma and Mia, finished everything, Phoebe helped everyone and admitted she was more Kiwi than Aussie, and Squash was as enthusiastic as ever.

In summary, everyone went for it and it looks like they will continue to go for it. Thanks for following along our expedition. Bye. back to top

 

Our team members on the Cho La Glacier having fun (Valerie Hovland). Dan and King practicing abseils above the Lobuche basecamp (Squash Falconer).

8 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Irma Garam calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 8th of April.

We woke up early this morning and had a delicious breakfast in Cho La basecamp. This was the first real day of our school, so we climbed up to the glacier. It was a really challenging climb up to the glacier, but then we had some really good exercises in the beautiful surroundings of the Cho La.

We returned to basecamp and had an excellent lunch. After that the team relaxed because I think we were all a bit tired from the day’s activities. Mark wasn’t feeling quite up to climbing up to the glacier because of a headache, but now he is feeling much better and ready to go.

It’s really beautiful up here. We have a great basecamp with a toilette, shower, dining room, and really excellent food. Thanks for following along our expedition. Bye, bye. back to top

Group dining tent at Cho La basecamp (Dan Mazur). King showing off his ascending technique during glacier practice on the Cho La glacier (Dan Mazur).

7 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Abi calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 7th of April.

We left this morning from Dzongla to the Cho La where we made our basecamp. Our campsite is now all set up and we’re ready to begin climbing.

We rested and relaxed most of the day before having a delicious dinner. After dinner we played some games and talked about the coming climb tomorrow.

Thank you very much from Cho La basecamp. Bye. back to top

Setting off for Cho La basecamp the morning after a big snowstorm in Dzongla (Dan Mazur). Team practicing roped glacier travel on the Cho La glacier (Dan Mazur).

6 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Squash Falconer calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 6th of April.

Mark joined us in Dughla this morning after spending a night in Pheriche and it was really good to see him again. We did a short trek today to Dzongla. The weather was good and it took us about 2 hours.

We’re staying at another teahouse tonight, which will be the last one before we move into tents tomorrow night. At about 5:00 p.m. there was a huge storm and it’s still snowing now. We had dinner at about 6:00 and just discovered there is a pudding menu. So while I’m sending this dispatch, we’re waiting for chocolate cake, custard, cinnamon rolls, and lemon pancakes. I guess we’ll all be feeling pretty sick by bedtime. Bye. back to top

King, Squash, Gary and Mia on the Cho La pass (Squash Falconer).

5 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Squash Falconer calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 5th of April.

We left Pheriche this morning for Dughla. It was just a short trek, so some people went by Dingboche where you can get on the internet. It has the second highest internet café in the world, which is quite expensive. I was expecting Dughla to be a small town with a few houses and teahouses, but it wasn’t so big. In fact, there is just one building, so it is going to be quite a cozy night tonight.

Phoebe and Keith reckon they’ve got HAG, which stands for ‘high altitude giggles’, but actually they have ‘high altitude gas’, so the rest of the team is keeping a safe distance.

Mark, our Hugh Grant lookalike, is feeling a lot better, but he’s going to spend an extra night in Pheriche and catch up with us tomorrow morning. It’s about 4600 metres/15,000 feet here, so we’re beginning to feel the altitude a bit and will call you as soon as we get up to the next town. Bye. back to top

A Buddhist statue atop Dugla Hill, with Ama Dablam in the background (Elselien te Hennepe).
4 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Squash Falconer calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 4th of April.

We left Deboche this morning after a delicious breakfast and tea. Just after a half hour into the trek we stopped into the oldest nunnery in Nepal. The nuns had a puja ceremony for us, where they blessed us for good luck for the journey ahead. It was also special for us because SummitClimb has been working to renovate, rebuild and support the nunnery. One of the members has been in mediation for over 50 years and hasn’t come out in all that time. We were really lucky because she came to her window, which is like a tiny little serving hatch in the wall and she gave us a blessing. She is a tiny old lady with incredibly wrinkly skin and bad teeth, so it was really amazing to be able to see her.

After the blessing we had a short trek of about 300 metres/1000 feet of ascent, which only took about 2 hours. It was stunning with brilliant weather and incredible views. We walked alongside Ama Dablam, which is a gorgeous mountain.

Most people are feeling fit and well. Keith is feeling much better now that he’s had a hot shower and some pizza. Mark, who is our Hugh Grant lookalike, has had a bad headache from all of the people along the trail taking pictures of him, thinking they have actually stumbled upon the famous actor.

Thanks for following along our expedition. Bye. back to top

 

Dolma, Mia and Squash enjoying making new friends at the Deboche Nunnery (Dan Mazur). Squash leading the glacier travel rope team on the Cho La pass. Behind her are Gary, Phoebe and Irma with Ama Dablam in the background (Squash Falconer).

3 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Phoebe Donovan calling in for the SummitClimb Everest View Glacier School on the 3rd of April.

We are in the small and peaceful town of Deboche. We left Namche Bazaar this morning, where we spent the last 2 nights partying at the disco. We went out with a bang last night. Squash took her ipod out and had the place pumping with downtown disco. We made sure that we were in bed nice and early at 10:30 p.m. so we could get up and hit the trail this morning.

We stopped at a teahouse by the river and once our bellies were full of delicious noodles and potatoes, we began the good slog up to the town of Tengboche. There is a great monastery here, which we promptly bypassed to get to the infamous ‘Tegnboche Bakery’. Mary, Rob, and I were first in and we had chocolate cakes, brownies, and coffees. Everyone sort of slowly filtered in throughout the afternoon for coffee and cake, with the place getting pretty packed.

After that we went down to Deboche where we’re spending the night. Tomorrow we’re going to visit the local nunnery where there’s a nun who has been meditating for over 50 years, so we’re looking forward to seeing that.

Everybody is in great health and we’re looking forward to hitting the trail again tomorrow. Ciao. back to top

Elselien te Hennepe, our past Everest basecamp leader, receiving a blessing from the local Buddhist Lama in Pangboche (Liz Stevens).
2 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling from SummitClimb.com & SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for 2 April.

I’m reporting in for the Everest Basecamp Trek, Island Peak Climb, Everest View Glacier School, and Everest and Lhotse climbs.

Today our group rested in Namche for acclimatization. Namche Bazaar is a really beautiful village with lots of lovely views of the mountains around. It’s a fairly big village and the capital of the Sherpa people. There are all sorts of amenities here. There is even a fantastic cyber café called the ‘Dante Café’ and I’d like to especially send my thanks to Santosh Arigati who runs the establishment.

Today we rested and had a nice walk around the perimeter. We went to the ‘Everest View Hotel’ and had some gorgeous views of Everest, where we are so excited to be going tomorrow. We also had some great meals, relaxed, and enjoyed some fun time with our team.

I have some really good news. Our Everest Tibet team led by Arnold Coster, our senior Everest guide, arrived in Namche today. It was so great to see him and all of the team. They’re up here acclimatizing while their Tibet permit is being sorted out.

Some sad news is that Sam and Morten tried to fly to Lukla today, but all of the Lukla flights were apparently cancelled. We miss them, but hopefully they’ll be here soon.

We’re so excited to be trekking up tomorrow to Pangboche, so we can get started on our Everest trek and make our way up to basecamp.

Thank you very much for following our expedition. Take care. Bye, bye. back to top

Namche Bazaar, the capital of the Sherpa people. See this unique village on our trek to and from basecamp (Tunc Findik).

1 April, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling from SummitClimb.com & SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for 1 April.

I’m reporting in for the Everest Basecamp Trek, Island Peak Climb, Everest View Glacier School, and Everest and Lhotse climbs.

Today we woke up in the village of Phakding and had a delicious breakfast, got our equipment sorted out, and walked along the trail to the village of Jorsalle, where we entered Mount Everest National Park. It really felt great to be inside the park and like we had already achieved some success. Then we stopped and had a delicious lunch before making the tough climb up the big hill to Namche. In beautiful weather with gorgeous sunshine we reached Namche in the afternoon, some as early as 2:00, others not getting there until 4:00 or 5:00 because they were stopping along the way to take photos. We went to our respective hotels, while some of us decided to camp instead.

I have some special news for today that our Everest Nepal and Lhotse climbing permits were issued. Thanks very much to our local agent of Parivar Expeditions, Murari Sharma, as well as our Everest Nepal leader Samuli Mansikka and special thanks to Morten Lindholm for all of his fantastic help.

Another important news item today is our Everest Tibet expedition flew to Lukla. They are going to take some extra days to acclimatize because there has been an unfortunate delay in issuing the permits for the Tibet expedition. We don’t think they’ll be issued until the 5th of April, so they decided to come up to the Khumbu and do some acclimatizing.

Thanks for following our expedition and we look forward to tomorrow’s dispatch. Bye, bye. back to top

31 March, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling from SummitClimb.com & SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for 31 March.

I’m reporting in for the Everest Basecamp Trek, Island Peak Climb, Everest View Glacier School, and Everest and Lhotse climbs.

Today our team woke up early and we went to the airport in Kathmandu. Then we flew out to Lukla in good weather and had a beautiful flight. We walked to the village Phakding, along with our porters carrying our equipment. It started to rain and we had a slight hail storm. When we reached the village of Phakding the weather cleared up, we had a rest and a delicious meal, then went to bed for a well deserved sleep.

Thanks very much for following our expedition and we look forward to making tomorrow’s dispatch. Bye, bye. back to top

Ryan Pickering, Blake Gornowicz and Phoebe Donovan at Kathmandu airport (Keith Whelan).

30 March, 2009

Team reports in live (click here to listen)

Hi, this is Dan Mazur calling from SummitClimb.com & SummitTrek.com with a dispatch for 30 March, 2009.

Today we had a really busy day. The weather was gorgeous and we’ve been having some rain in the evenings, which is nice because it freshens up the air. Kathmandu is really beautiful right now and very peaceful. The people here are so friendly and welcoming.

We had our orientation meetings today. Everyone is fully informed about how the trips are going to go. We enjoyed meeting each other and it looks like we’re going to have some great climbs and treks this year.

We’re just preparing now to get our Everest Nepal expedition into the field. They are going to fly tomorrow to Lukla, as well as our Everest View Glacier School, Everest Basecamp Trek and Island Peak climb.

It seems the Everest Tibet climb is going to have to wait a couple of days for the permits to be issued, but we’re feeling very positive about how that is progressing and we’ll be travelling to Tibet in a few days.

Thanks for following our expeditions and we’re wishing you all of the best. Thank you very much. Bye, bye. back to top

Gary, Mia, Irma, Mary, Blake, King, Dale, Abi, Ryan and Keith at our SummitTrek orientation meeting on the roof of the Hotel Tibet (Dan Mazur).

29 March, 2009

Hi. This is Dan Mazur writing to you. All members of our treks and climbs have been arriving and we are looking forward to our team briefings on 30 March. The weather has been very nice. Warm and sunny during the day with a bit of light rain in the evenings. We have been enjoying early morning team walks to the Monkey Temple. Our staff of sherpas have been busy packing and our office staff have been getting all of the permits, flights, and transport arranged. Thanks for watching our SummitClimb and SummitTrek news!!!

A view of Swayambhunath Stupa, the "Monkey Temple". It is the most ancient and enigmatic of all the holy shrines in Kathmandu valley. Swayambhunath's worshippers include Hindus, Vajrayana Buddhists of northern Nepal and Tibet, and the Newari Buddhists of central and southern Nepal. Each morning before dawn, hundreds of pilgrims will ascend the 365 steps that lead up the hill, file past the gilded Vajra (Tibetan: Dorje) and two lions guarding the entrance, and begin a series of clockwise circumambulations of the stupa. On each of the four sides of the main stupa there are a pair of big eyes. These eyes are symbolic of God's all-seeing perspective (Dave Dogruel).

Team Roster

Everest View Glacier School May:

  • Ridlon Kiphart
  • Dennis Nichols
  • Derick Delima
  • Mike Sanson 

Everest Basecamp Trek May:

  • Ms. Soon Keng Chan
  • David Robison

Everest View Glacier School April:

  • Dan Mazur - USA (leader)
  • Raj Thapa - Nepal (leader)
  • Ms. Mia Graeffe - Finland
  • Ms. Irma Garam - Finland
  • Ms. Phoebe Donovan - New Zealand
  • Ms. Squash Falconer - UK
  • Gary White - Australia
  • Mark Hetherington - Australia
  • Keith Whelan - USA
  • Jeff Hui - Hong Kong 

Everest Basecamp Trek & Island Peak April:

  • Blake Gornowicz
  • Mary Griffin
  • Ryan Pickering

Everest Basecamp Trek April: 

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