Friday, 10 October 2008

Tuesday 20 November 2001


At 0300 hours I was wakened by Rex and dressed in as many layers of clothes as was possible as it was extremely cold and frosty. At 0320 hours I had breakfast of porridge, cake (bread), boiled eggs and marmalade and at 0350 hours I set off towards the Goche La, accompanied by Cameron, Gina, Malcolm, Drew and five Sherpas. The party was all Scots except for Malcolm. The softies were left sleeping in their tents.

We climbed steadily up onto moraine ridges and across a sandy area, an old glacier, using head torches. Around 0520 hours we reached a viewpoint as the skies started to clear giving views of the mountain tops and later the sun shining on them.

At 0630 hours I arrived at the Exodus viewpoint with a Sherpa. Gina wasn’t feeling well and Cameron stayed back with her. Drew was struggling a bit. I had a rest at this viewpoint and removed some of my clothes as it was getting a bit warm especially after the steep climb to the viewpoint. Once the others arrived we continued to the Goche La which firstly necessitated a steep descent on a snow and ice slope. If at home I would have considered crampons. A short climb took us to the Goche La arriving there just after 0700 hours with Cameron. Drew and Malcolm followed a short time later. Gina had stayed at the Exodus viewpoint.

I stayed there for about ten to fifteen minutes taking in the views and having a snack. Cameron had set off back to be with Gina.

Drew and I returned to the campsite at a fairly brisk pace arriving there at 0930 hours. We had hot juice and packed our gear. At 1100 hours we had lunch of soup, scrambled eggs and beans and at 1130 hours set off down the valley to the campsite at Thangshing. It was clouding over with a cold wind.

At 1300 hours arrived at campsite (same campsite as 18 November) and had tea and biscuits at 1400 hours. At 1430 hours I obtained some hot water and washed and shaved, wrote up my notebook then read. It was cold and trying to snow.

At 1800 hours we had dinner, which consisted of soup, spaghetti, onion bhajis. We also had cake, which the kitchen staff had prepared to celebrate Malcolm and Anne’s twenty fifth wedding anniversary. Custard was supplied with it which was quite nice. At 2010 hours retired to tent and lights out. Slept well till 0140 hours then broken sleep.

Maximum altitude for the day was 4955 metres.

This link will take you to other photos taken this day.