In a couple of suprise moves today, MountEverest.net is reporting that summit bids have been launched on both Everest and Dhaulagiri and in grand fasion.
First up, on Dhaulagiri a group of climbers have set out from Base Camp today to go straight for the summit, fast and light. Just five days ago, this same group, made up of Horia Colibasanu, Iñaki Ochoa, Jorge Egocheaga and Joby Ogwyn, was turned back on that same mountain. Currently there is calm weather on the seventh highest peak in the World, and the team doesn’t want to let that go to waste. They haven’t specifically said that they are on a speed push, but their actions say otherwise. If everything holds true, they could summit as early as tomorrow.
In other news, over on Everest, two Kazak climbers have set off from ABC for their summit bid on the North Col route. The two are also making a speed run, with out supplemental oxygen, pre-established high camps, or fixed ropes on the upper sections. If the pair make it to the top, it’ll certainly be an impressive feat, not to mention the first summit of the year.
In other Everest news, four American demonstrators were arrested today at Base Camp. The group held signs saying “One World, One Dream, Free Tibet 2008” and wore t-shirts that said “No Torch through Tibet” in obvious reference to the Chinese bringing the Olypic Torch to the summit of Everest via the North Side.
The other Big Story (I say a bit tongue in cheek) is the lack of Yaks on Everest this year. This isn’t the first time I’ve heard complaints of a Yak Shortage, but now even Nives Meroi is having problems finding the pack beasts to help her bring gear up to BC. Fear not though. The Yaks aren’t being mutilated by aliens or anything, they’ve simply been reserved by the large Chinese contigent and two other big commercial climbing teams. Hopefully there will be a boom in Yak births this year, as I’m sure next year’s Chinese team will be even larger.
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