Just yesterday I posted a story about the projected schedule for climbing Cho Oyu, which included a predicted Summit Day of this Thursday. But what a difference a day can make, as according to ExWeb, an avalanche high on the mountain has halted work on the route, and will likely spell the end of the Fall Season on that mountain.
According to this story, a team of Sherpas was working the route on Cho Oyu earlier today, hoping to finish fixing the lines to the summit so that the climbers could complete their attempt on the mountain in a few days time. That work was interrupted however when they men were struck by an avalanche while installing ropes above the second rock band. While no one was hurt in that avalanche, one of the Sherpas was reportedly very shaken up, and the entire team has elected to come down the mountain due to the unsafe conditions at altitude.
Apparently those conditions don’t look to improve any time soon, and the reports are that there is still way too much snow high on the mountain for it to be safe to go up. As a result, the IMG team has pulled the plug on their Cho Oyu expedition for the fall, and it seems like the other big teams will likely now follow suit. According to ExWeb, the Adventure Consultants have recalled their team from C2 to ABC, and are currently weighing their options, while the Field Touring Alpine squad is hoping to gain more information on the stability of the snow near the summit before they make their decision.
The poor conditions are a bit of a bitter pill to swallow for the climbers hoping to summit Cho Oyu this fall. They waited for weather conditions to improve, and it seems that it finally has, only to present another difficult challenge. It seems that things are likely over on the mountain for the fall, lets hope that climbers on other mountains in the region have a bit more luck.