Mat Kitchin wears the 'lone star' hat while practising ladder crossing.
16 April 2005
Today at BC was all about rest, socialising, trying to kick the 'yucky lurg' and ladder training.
It seems this season more of us than usual have been afflicted by sore throats, head colds and similar such unpleasant but transient ailments. Needless to say our expedition doctor Rachel Harrison is having more action than she anticipated. The good news is that we have plenty of time to recover and still maintain our acclimatisation schedule.
The main action today involved fine tuning personal rigging systems and practising ladder crossing. Aluminium ladders are used to cross crevasses and ascend steep seracs in the Khumbu Icefall and lower Western Cwm. As many as five or six ladder sections may be joined together to make a single span. This first introduction to the techniques of ladder crossing took place in our camp environs. When it came to the 'ladder Olympics' our climbing sherpas (who had returned from a carry to Camp 2 in time for lunch) were most amused by the antics. Deliberately making the ladder precariously balanced, folks had to cross with the aid of only one rope, backwards and the like. Dawa, our sherpa cook, could not resist the action and Paul found juggling across the ladder to be quite challenging. Prize for the biggest 'splash' goes to Mat Kitchin seen in today's pici.
This morning several members of our trekking party climbed Kala Pattar, 5545m, on what has been truly a spectacular day in the Khumbu Himal. The trekkers then hiked to Lobuche where they will spend tonight. Tomorrow they have what should be a relatively leisurely descent to the village of Pangboche.
Until tomorrow this is Mike signing out for the AC Team from the colourful tent camp city called Everest Base Camp.