On the way from camp 1 to camp 2
At the crack of dawn on 15 April, we set off for our 2nd acclimatization cycle, which brought us to Camps 1 (6,100m) and 2 (6,500m). This was the first time on this climb that we’d be reaching an altitude of 6,500m. We had with us our Sherpas, Kami, Jamling and Dawa. We headed up the Khumbu Icefall at 5.30am, traveling through the giant blocks of ice in semi-darkness. Climbing in the morning also meant having to endure low temperatures, and it was through this blanket of sub-zero coldness that we journeyed through multiple crevasses and vertical sections with the use of ladders.
The sun hit us around 9am in the icefall, and the sun’s rays started taking a toll on our energy. We had to stop every now and then to hydrate and consume food. We also had to remove the warmer pieces of clothing on us to help with our ventilation system.
Camp 1 is rather exposed to the elements and we stayed in our tents mostly to stay out of the howling winds. The next day, we moved off around 7am for an acclimatization hike up to lower Camp 2. That helped us stay active at altitude which is an important factor in our acclimatization cycle.
We climbed up to Camp 2 the following day, up the Western Cwm. Temperatures are known to be blazing hot in the cwm because we’re traveling through the basin of a valley, where most of the heat gets trapped and reflected. Therefore we started early in the morning around 6am to avoid the heat. Even though the terrain wasn’t particularly steep, every step we took was draining because of the high altitude. We arrived at Camp 2 in time for an early lunch, and helped set up the tents which we would call ‘home’ for the next 3 nights.
Camp 2 with Lhotse Face towering in the background
From Camp 2, we were able to behold the magnificent Lhotse Face, which we will be climbing up to reach Camp 3 (7,400m) on our next acclimatization cycle. We’re heading up to Camp 3 within the next week, and we hope to bring you more updates when we return from Camp 3 in about a week’s time!
The sun rays slowly moving over camp 1