Everest: Rising Winds Hamper Climbers’ Descent

Monday saw fewer summits than expected, about 25. Increasing winds forced some teams to stay put. The wind is also making the descent difficult.

Dan Mazur of Summit Climb, whose team summited yesterday, reports that the wind is so fierce that they were having problems walking down. It quickly became apparent that they wouldn’t make it down to Camp 2. As the light faded, they stopped at Camp 3, sipping O2 through the night.

Today, the team has painted a worrying picture. “The winds are ferocious here in Camp 3: Tents shaking, spindrift snow blasting into the tents through tiny zipper openings…Part of our team is now in Camp 2, and they reported that the kitchen/dining tent almost blew away in the high winds.”

Mazur is hoping that the wind will let up so they can descend the Lhotse Face to Camp 2 safely. “Right now, that is not something we can do voluntarily!” he said.

Garrett Madison spoke to ExplorersWeb after returning to Base Camp. His team summited in good weather on May 23. “It’s very windy today in Camp 2 and Camp 3. Some teams are going for the summit tonight and also on the 29. But the cyclone is supposed to arrive any day now,” he said.

After climbing from Camp 3 “with only three or four other people climbing up,” the Alpine Ascents team checked in from Camp 4 yesterday. They described conditions as “a little windy”.

“We will rest tomorrow and let the winds die down…and plan to summit on the morning of May 26,” they said.

Emergency warning issued

However, the wind is not expected to recede. Cyclone Yaas touched down on the Indian coast today. With wind speeds of 155-165kph, Nepal’s Meteo Forecasting Service has issued an emergency warning. Blizzards are expected at altitude.

Cyclone Yaas has already hit India’s West coast and is affecting the Himalaya. Photo: http://www.mfd.gov.np/

 

Meanwhile, a large number of climbers pushed up to Camp 2 yesterday, ready to wait out the cyclone and then launch a summit push.

Meanwhile, COVID whispers continue. Yesterday, Russian Dmitry Livanov was airlifted from Camp 2, complaining of “chest pain”. And it seems that at least one Everest summiter tested positive after he returned to Kathmandu.

“Amin Dehghan summited Everest on May 12 [with SST], then back in Kathmandu, he tested COVID positive on May 18,” commenter Pawel posted on one of ExWeb’s stories yesterday.

Angela Benavides is a journalist specialised on high-altitude mountaineer and expedition news working with ExplorersWeb.com.

Angela Benavides has been writing about climbing and mountaineering, adventure and outdoor sports for 20+ years.

Prior to that, Angela Benavides spent time at/worked at a number of national and international media. She is also experienced in outdoor-sport consultancy for sponsoring corporates, press manager and communication executive, radio reporter and anchorwoman, etc. Experience in Education: Researcher at Spain’s National University for Distance Learning on the European Commission-funded ECO Learning Project; experience in teaching ELE (Spanish as a Second Language) and transcultural training for expats living in Spain.

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Adrian
Adrian
1 year ago

They’re willing to slog it up despite COVID to get validation from social media but now they’re sh**ing their down-pants because they can’t descend safely?

Chaitanya
Chaitanya
1 year ago

Cyclone Yaas is going to hit east coast of India, cyclone Taukte had hit west coast of India few days back.

Don Paul
Don Paul
1 year ago

I am remembering the K2 Winter expedition. I was following Sergi Mingote and others on social media, who were blogging every day on the website of geo, a phone company. In one of his updates, Sergi Mingote and JP Mohr were in a tent in Camp 2 doing a rotation to acclimatize, but the wind was so strong it collapsed their tent. They stayed that way for two days, in the collapsed tent, and could not even boil water. Then the wind died down and they descended. Both died in separate incidents in the next weeks.

Last edited 1 year ago by Don Paul
Maysnow
Maysnow
1 year ago

Meghan Buchanan told her expedition was canceled today because the sherpa team refused support for the summit push! Video at FB.

Christopher Markes
Christopher Markes
1 year ago
Reply to  Maysnow

If the Sherpas think it’s not safe that’s it for those except the very best and experienced climbers.
Don’t risk lives just for the glory of summiting

Bored in the UK
Bored in the UK
1 year ago
Reply to  Maysnow

Bollocks! That team faced a massive Covid outbreak from the getgo. Heard the majority of the Sherpas now have it. That team should be ashamed of themselves with how they have handled the entire season. A climber called them out on it early on and they all lied through their teeth. Karma has no menu. You get served what you deserve. It’s just a shame the Sherpa have to suffer.
That company is off of my short list.

Marie
Marie
1 year ago

The Sherpas probably saved her life in light of COVID and the upcoming cyclone, while she was shamelessly willing to risk theirs for nothing but self-promotion.