Makalu 2001, the expedition at Base Camp
The "Aquile" Mountain Guides expedition has reached Base Camp and is beginning preparations for the ascent of Makalu (8475m)
|17 April 2001 |
The moment of truth is approaching rapidly. The "Aquile" Mountain Guides expedition from S. Martino di Castrozza has now walked up the Barun River valley to the foot of the glacier that descends from 8475m - Makalu. At present they are settled in Hillary base camp, but yesterday they ascended to 5500m to inspect Advanced Base Camp, their true home for the duration of the climb.
They departed from Kathmandu on 5/04/01 with a Yeti Airline flight to Tumlingtar, from where they proceeded on foot for nine days via the villages of Manebhanjar (1100m), Cicila (1950m) and Num (1595m). They crossed the Arun river and walked past forests of rhododendron, magnolia, oleander and himalayan cedars. Their trek continued across snow-covered ground from Tashigaon to Mumbuk and across the Shipton pass at 4000m from where they caught the first glimpse of their Makalu.
The expedition members have now begun their ascent preparations and plan to establish three camps at 6400m, 7400m and 7850m respectively. At present the weather pattern has been fairly stable, with good weather in the morning and snowfalls in the afternoon. Of note is that on 16/04 a Russian helicopter evacuated an Austrian mountaineer and two New Zealanders who had serious health problems.
From Base Camp the team reported from here Makalu rises majestically and is tipped by its plume of crystals, so typical of the 8000m Himalayan peaks almost 4000m above us.
The various stages of the expedition can be followed on the official website at:
The expedition at Base Camp