This is Dan Mazur calling with the final dispatch from our spring climbing season. I am currently in Everest basecamp and all of our members and staff are down from the hill. It's a beautiful sunny day here. There are a few puffy clouds, light winds, crystal clear blue skies, and birds are flying around hovering on the air currents. As I speak to you I am looking up at Mount Everest and the mighty Khumbu Glacier Icefall, which looks like an enourmous frozen river of white diamonds. Occasionally an avalanche pops off from one of the subsidiary peaks which ring this corrie our basecamp lies within. These avalanches are noisy and impressive, but luckily they never touch basecamp.
This year we were blessed with great success. I am very thankful, and perhaps even a bit surprised with how lucky we were. Of course, the maxim: 'good luck follows hard work' might hold true in this case.
Many of our team members, men and women from around the world, climbed to the top of Everest, our world's highest mountain, as well as to the summit of Lhotse, the fourth highest, and thank god we had no serious accidents.
Everyone tried very hard and achieved their personal goals, whether that was trekking to basecamp, or achieving a personal high point, such as the summit of easy Island Peak, or getting up to high camp on Everest or Lhotse. We commend all of our team members on doing their very best.
We faced a lot of challenges this year, especially with the closure of Tibet due to the Chinese Olympic torch parade on Everest.
However, our members, leaders, and staff showed the patience, flexibility, and determination which good mountaineers need, and we made the best of the season.
14 of our Members summited Everest. Of these, We placed the Youngest Canadian man and the youngest Canadian woman on the summit of Everest. We placed a family of four on the summit of Everest. Please check the recent news for more.
4 of our Members reached the summit of Lhotse, the world's fourth highest peak
We placed the First Dutchman on the summit of Lhotse, and the first Greek on the summit of Lhotse.
14 of our Sherpas climbed to the summit of Everest.
4 of our sherpas climbed to the summit of Lhotse.
We had excellent expedition leadership from Arnold Coster and Sam Mansikka (photo right: Ang Sherpa and Ms. Sophie Denis on the summit of Everest).
In addition, we had a great group of trekkers and climbers for our Everest basecamp trek and Island Peak climb in April and May. In April we had 11 members trek to basecamp and 5 members reach the summit of Island Peak. In May we had an outstanding group of 5 trek to basecamp and reach the summit of Kala Patar, having a lot of fun the whole way. Please check the news for more about their adventure. back to top
We try to keep the momentum going here at SummitClimb, so I would like to mention a few upcoming trips:
We are now working toward our July trip to Mustagata, the world's easiest 7500 metre, 25,000 foot peak, which is perfect for snowshoeing, skiing, racquetting, and snowboarding. The leader is Mustagata expert Jon Otto, who has climbed it 8 times and speaks fluent English and Chinese. There is still time to join our team of men and women from around the world, if you hurry. Climbing Mustagata would qualify you for Mount Everest (photo right by Brad Jackson: Mustagata seen from acclimatization camp at 3600 metres/11,800 feet with Karakul Lake reflecting the mountain).
For the autumn, in September we encourage you to join us on Cho Oyu , the world's sixth highest and most accessible of the fourteen highest mountains, known as 8000 metre, 26,000 foot high mountains. Cho Oyu is located beside Mount Everest. Also in September we offer an expedition to Shishapangma, the lowest of the 8000 metre peaks, and located next to Cho Oyu. The leaders will be me, Dan Mazur and Samuli Mansikka, both of whom have multiple ascents of Cho Oyu, Shishapangma, and Everest. We are relaxed friendly and very competent and safe leaders. This is our 8th Cho Oyu expedition and our 3rd Shishapangma expedition. So please let us know and come on and join our fun group of men and women from around the world. Doing these climbs would qualify you for Mt. Everest. Oh by the way, we heard a rumour that a few members might want to ski these. Wow, that might be something to watch. back to top
In October, we offer the exciting climb of 7000 metre, 23,000 foot high, Mount Ama Dablam, known as Asia's most famous rock, ice, and snow peak. It's a technical mountain, but very climbable. We fix rope from camp 1 to the summit, and the hardest move is French 4, British severe, or North American 5.7 . Our leader is Summit Climb expert and all around nice guy Arnold Coster. This is our 12th Ama Dablam expedition and we have had great success with this peak. It's a really fun and accomplishable technical climb, there is no snow-slogging as basecamp is on grass. This has become a very popular climb for technical climbers who want to test their skills safely at altitude. So please come on and join our fun group of men and women from around the world. Climbing Ama Dablam would qualify you for Mt. Everest. back to top
Hey don't forget this autumn's treks to basecamp, fun climb of easy Island Peak, and our new Everest-View Glacier-School. Those are big favourites and we have a superb team of men and women guides who know how to have fun and point out local scenery as well as lead a great trip. Each year our treks and easy climbs become more popular, especially with the super new leaders we have. So come on and join in!
Well, I could go on about exciting trips we have coming up in spring of 2009 like Lhakpa-Ri and the North-Col for those who want to try their hand at 7000 metre, 23,000 foot high peak climbing, get qualified for Mt Everest, or perhaps even transition right to Mount Everest or Cho Oyu immediately afterward. This has become a very popular trip for us.
And hey, all you climbers, we are now accepting applications for the spring of 2009, so please come on out again for Everest, Cho Oyu and Lhotse.
If trekking and walking is more in your line of interest, please join us this spring in 2009 for basecamp treks, easy Island Peak climbs, and our Everest-View Glacier-School. back to topBarbara Mallory and Mingma Sherpa (Preston Stroud). Our team ascending the summit ridge on Island Peak (Emil Friis). Our Everest Basecamp Trek and Island Peak team. The village of Jorsalle. Yaks and porters on Jorsalle bridge (Preston Stroud). Kevin Cooper on the summit. Kevin Cooper on the shoulder to the summit. Stefano, Emil, Tom and Kevin on the summit. Summit morning (Stefano Ricci).
Also, if you would like to get involved in charity, non-profit and volunteer projects, and we hope you do, please consider joining us, as we offer a variety of treks and educational, health-care, and environmental projects. These benefit low-income farm families who live far from the beaten track, so please let us know.
Well, thanks for listening and watching and for your great support. Please tell all of your adventurous friends to join our fun teams of men and women from around the world. Our company survives on word-of-mouth.
This is Dan Mazur from SummitClimb.com signing off. I will look forward to a chance to chat with all of you and meet you soon. So please send me an email, or give a phone call. Ok thank you very much, and Bye for now!
Ps. Please remember to check out our leader-in-training program. We are always trying to get new leaders to join SummitClimb.com . Thanks!
Pps. Would you like to receive a colour Himalayan postcard? Please send us your postal address so we may post one to you or any of your friends and family interested in trekking and climbing. Thank you. back to top
Ang Sherpa and Ms. Sophie atop Everest. John Dowd and Tenji 1, Everest summit. Dr. Ken Stalter and Dawa Sherpa (they are on the right side of the photo) on the summit of Everest. Matt Lipscombe-Everest. Tenji 2 on the summit of Everest, John Shelton-Smith's sherpa. Dr. Christian Otto (Eric Otto)-Everest. Eric Otto, the youngest Canadian to summit Mt. Everest (Christian Otto). The Otto brothers (Christian Otto)-Everest. Ms. Agnieszka Kiela-Palys on the summit of Everest. Andrew Brash on the summit of Everest. Herman Kristen, the first Dutchman atop the summit of Lhotse (Sam Mansikka). Laura Mallory on top of Mount Everest. Laura is the youngest Canadian woman to climb to the summit (Pasang Norbu Sherpa). Dan, Alan, and Adam Mallory on the summit of Everest (Sange Sherpa). Ron Hoglin, the second Canadian atop the summit of Lhotse (Sam Mansikka). Samuli Mansikka, the second Finn atop the summit of Lhotse (Herman Kristen). Tile and Jangbu Sherpa atop the summit of Lhotse (Sam Mansikka). Haris Kiriakakis, first Greek atop Lhotse (Lakpa Sherpa). Lakpa Sherpa on the summit of Lhotse (Haris Kiriakakis). Lakpa Sherpa and Mike Browder on the summit of Everest (Pasang Sherpa). John Shelton-Smith. Matt Lipscombe and Nima Chirri.
Our international Everest & Lhotse team members & Sherpas in basecamp. Please click one of the thumbnails below to view the full size image. Photos by Dan Mazur. back to top
Arnold Coster and Maya Sherpa (They do a great job and we thank them!). Ms. Diane Walker. Ian de Bruyn. Johnny Madsen. Les Williams. Roger Danks. Stefanos Voutselas. Jo Valseth. Ms. Laura Ross. Pasang Norbu and Ms. Laura Mallory. Mallory family: Front row l-r: Jangbu Sherpa, Ms. Laura Mallory, Sange Sherpa; Back row: l-r: Dan Mallory, Alan Mallory, Adam Mallory. Lakpa Sherpa and Mike Browder. Lhotse team-Front row l-r: Herman Kristin, Jangbu Sherpa, and Ron Hoglin; Back row l-r: Tile Sherpa and Samuli Mansikka. Ang Sherpa and Ms. Sophie Denis. Bert Veldhuis. John Dowd and Tenji Sherpa 1. John Shelton-Smith and Tenji Sherpa 2. Pasang Norbu and Ms. Linda Tan. Dr. Ken Stalter and Dawa Sherpa. Matt Lipscombe and Nima Chirri. From left to right: Ms. Agnieszka Kiela-Palys (congratulations to her on summitting Everest!), Cherring Dorje Sherpa, and Maciej Palys. Phurba Sherpa and Andrew Brash. Left to right: Dr. Christian Otto, Lakpa Norbu Sherpa, and Eric Otto. Photos by Dan Mazur.
Here are some photos from our recent Everest Basecamp Trek. Click one of the thumb nails below to view a bigger version of each image.
Below are some short video clips taken recently by our team members. Please click the picture or title in the left column to view each clip. In the right column is the description for each video.
|Ms. Sophie Denis and Mr. Jinpa Sherpa on the summit of Mt. Everest.|
|Adam Mallory summit video on Mount Everest.|
|What more can one say about this worrisome John Shelton-Smith video of an avalanche landing near basecamp?|
|Everyone has different ideas about how best to traverse the treacherous Khumbu Icefall. This unknown team decided it would be best to walk through the ice-fall roped together in lock-step, just one metre apart. Hmmmm, we are not sure this is such a good idea (video by Diane Walker)?|
|Everest closed !?!? On 6 May, this enormous Russian-made Nepal-Air-Force helicopter landed in basecamp and 12 troops and dignitaries spewed out to make warning speeches about international security and sweep basecamp and inspect all of the tents for illegal communications equipment, flags, etcetera. Everest remained closed to climbers from 1-8 May while the Chinese Olympic torch team went to the summit. Our sincere thanks to the Nepal-Air-Force for their professional conduct during this difficult situation and for their assistance in air-evacuating one of our sherpas who suffered an apparent stroke on the way to camp 1 (video by John Shelton-Smith).|
|Diane Walker films Stefanos Voutselas crossing a treacherous ladder in the Khumbu Icefall.|
|Even some of the strongest sherpas in the world need to have a ceremony before heading off to climb Everest. Here our super-star climbing sherpas shake a leg at our puja ceremony before heading up to the summit to help our team members get to to the top and back down safely (video John Shelton-Smith).|
|Stefanos Voutselas films Les Williams descending the big scary 3-section ladder at the top of the Khumbu Ice-fall.|