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Everest Update

Rapid Ascent Team says farewell to Everest. Cho+Everest Team takes a second chance at a summit bid.

Everest Rapid Ascent Team: After a mass equipment failure forced both teams to abandon their summit pushes, the Rapid Ascent Team has made the difficult decision to end their Everest season. The team is currently descending to Everest Base Camp and they will head home in a couple days. After sharing an incredible and challenging experience over the past few weeks, the team is saying an emotional goodbye to one another and bidding a bittersweet farewell to Everest.

Everest Rapid Ascent Team Guide Chad Peele’s account: “Failure never comes lightly. Everest is a beast of a mountain. It takes dedication, motivation, perseverance and for some a lot of cash… Weather and fatigue are common reasons for failure on the world’s highest mountain but a mechanical failure of equipment is a hard pill to swallow. 

On the morning of May 16, we chose an amazing summit window with mild temps and wind. The team had prepped both before and while on the mountain. The night was a go. We nervously cruised to 8,500 meters and were starting the 2nd step… The most technical section of the North Ridge when our oxygen regulators started popping like the 4th of July spewing white gas several meters into the air.

Our team skillfully dealt with the problem by accessing our reserve regs with all intent to continue on… But as they kept blowing the situation turned from a “normal” problem to something scary. Narrow ledges, confusion, darkness and several members already on the steep ladders compounded the situation. We ran out of reserves while multiple Sherpa teammates sacrificed their oxygen systems so team members could breathe. The decision to abandon our push and descend with safety and strength become the sole goal.

Long story short our team is safe and a potential catastrophe was diverted. Thanks to strong work, organization and an ability to let the summit go, we can now feel gratitude, humility, and disappointment.”

“Sunrise over the Tibetan Plateau from 28,000 feet yesterday morning. Incredible beauty surrounded us right alongside the very real hazard as our carefully planned safety net was stripped away. Today has been a day of debriefing our “near miss”, and appreciating the fact that all of us are still here to remember this beauty.” Adrian Ballinger

 

The Cho+Everest team: Thanks to the support of the climbing community on Everest, The Cho+Everest team will try for one more attempt at the summit. Another team that recently summited successfully will lend our team their oxygen systems, which have been used all the way to the summit without issue. Thanks to the generous offer, our Cho+Everest team will have a second shot at summiting both Cho and Everest within 30 days. The team intends to take an additional day of rest then charge back up Everest setting up minimal camps and summiting within a short window.

Climber Jim Morrison of the Cho+Everest Team: “Woke up yesterday with porters at my tent and my teammates asking for my bags to be sent down and home. The bags left and I went to grumpytown. Climbing is not always about the success of a send. Yet it is so often perceived by us in a very binary outcome as Pennkap puts it, but climbing like life is about reinvigorating your self and your team, and trying again. You don’t just pack up and go home when you fall, you get up and try again. The porters came back with our gear.”