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 Feb 1-10th, 2000 Daily Reports

For Latest News. For earlier reports: See the Site Index for a list of all the Daily Reports plus many other stories. If you are new to the site you will want to visit the Site Index... along with the homepage... Please visit Everest News Sponsor page !

Daily News: 2/10/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000

Thrane & Thrane sponsorship of the first all Danish Mount Everest Expedition

In the Spring of year 2000 the satellite communication company, Thrane & Thrane, is sponsoring the first all Danish Mount Everest Expedition. The expedition named ‘BigE – Thrane & Thrane Danish Everest Expedition 2000’ - will leave for the Himalayas on March 27th and attempt to reach the summit of Mount Everest in May. All eight members of the BigE-expedition are among the most experienced Danish climbers with significant mountaineering experience. Leader of the expedition and team doctor is Henrik Jessen Hansen. Henrik Jessen Hansen has been on five earlier expeditions to the Himalayas, including one to Mount Everest in 1996. This year was a disastrous year at Mount Everest with numerous casualties. As a result, Henrik Jessen Hansen had to give up his personal attempt to reach the summit. Instead Henrik Jessen Hansen established the world highest located emergency hospital, where he performed important and needed rescue help.

Thrane & Thrane has previously sponsored other mountaineering expeditions, including expeditions to Mt. Everest in 1996 and Gasherbrum I in Pakistan in 1998. However, the sponsorship of the BigE-expedition is by far the company’s biggest sponsorship investment. The main objective of the BigE-sponsorship is to present Thrane & Thrane as a leading-edge satellite communications company and to demonstrate Thrane & Thrane product superiority and reliability under extreme conditions. In particular in regard to Thrane & Thrane’s most recent product innovation within satellite communication, the Capsat Messenger (the M4 terminal). The BigE-expedition will bring along the Capsat Messenger as its primary communication unit and Thrane & Thrane is confident that the Capsat Messenger will perform trouble-free.

On the BigE-expedition Thrane & Thrane is represented by director Lars Thrane and electronic engineer, Jan Mathorne. Their participation in the expedition gives Thrane & Thrane a first-hand experience of the Capsat Messenger’s quality and reliability. In addition, it demonstrates Thrane & Thrane’s unique company spirit. Thrane & Thrane attracts some of the best electronic engineers and creative minds in the business and the people who work at Thrane & Thrane strive to push back the limits and reach new heights.

The BigE-expedition and its progress can be followed at Thrane & Thrane’s website: http://www.tt.dk/everest/intro.html

EverestNews.com friend Bo Belvedere Christensen will also be part of this expedition. Bo has been part of many expeditions to 8000 meter peaks including the Everest 1996 Expedition. This expedition is planning a South Pillar Route see: http://www.tt.dk/everest/hq_rute.html


Daily News: 2/9/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000


Frits Vrijlandt and Steven Le Poole, will attempt to climb Everest via the North ridge. When they succeed, they will be the first Dutchmen to do so. Joke Groenendaal will keep you updated.

Frits Vrijlandt and Steven Le Poole will be part of a non-commercial British/Dutch expedition. Steven climbed Cho Oyu in 1997 without oxygen. Frits has 15 years of climbing experience.

Check out their Schedule Page. Interesting stuff !


More soon on these interesting climbers...

New Books

Daily News: 2/8/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000

EverestNews.com continues to receive requests for information on Everest clean-up expeditions. There are at least two major "clean-up" expeditions this year on Everest:

www.everestcleanup.com and www.highambitions.com .

We are Sure they would be glad to hear from You !. Check them out.

Many climbers continue to 'tune-up" for Everest by climbing in South America, Mexico, the Alps, and along the world.

New Books

Daily News: 2/7/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000

Gordon Janow, director of Alpine Ascents International has told EverestNews.com that Alpine Ascents International has a 2000 Everest team for the Spring.

Alpine Ascents International has a long history of Everest Expeditions and base camp expedition. 

  • K2 2000:

American Heidi Howkins has announced she will attempt K2 in 2000. Heidi attempted K2 in 1998 without success. However, several climbers are expected at K2 in 2000 increasing everyone chances.


Daily News: 2/5/2000 Report

  • Jochen Hemmleb Interview: Part Four

Q.) Jochen: Do you think the weight of the l924 oxygen cylinders would have been a inhibiting factor for Mallory and Irvine climbing the Second Step?

A.) [Jochen] The whole apparatus (Irvine's modified version) with three cylinders had a weight of 28 lbs. (13 kg). One full cylinder had a weight of 8 lbs. (3.7 kg), an empty cylinder 6.5 lbs. (3 kg). By the time they had reached the Second Step, they would have discarded at least one cylinder (the one found below the First Step) and used up most of a second cylinder each - so the MAXIMUM weight they would have had to carry would have been about 19 lbs. (9 kg) if they had taken three cylinders each, or about 13 lbs. (6 kg) if they had taken two. It's for those who have been up there to judge whether this would have been an inhibiting factor. Paul

Q.) Hello Jochen Do you know the names of the Porters who went to Camp 6 with Mallory and Irvine. It seems a shame that these men have not been given the credit which is their due. Chris 

A.) [Jochen] A note Mallory sent down from Camp V on June 6, 1924, mentions four names: Ang Tenjin, Tewang, Nimija & Dareda. These are probably the porters who continued the next day to Camp VI. On the list of provisions for the summit attempt, found on Mallory's body, the names appear again with the exception of Tewang. In addition appear: Lobsang, Amdo & Mingma. (Mallory's handwriting is not easy to decipher, so the spelling might be slightly different).

Q.) Ghosts of Everest has been the subject of criticism by Salon.com and others on the grounds it overstates the case for Mallory having reached the summit.  http://www.salon.com/travel/feature/2000/01/15/everest/index.html What is your response ? 

A.) [Jochen] The last statement is the main flaw of many criticisms, because "Ghosts" NEVER states that Mallory & Irvine reached the summit - only that they could have done so. Unless someone clearly proves that they did not make it, or clearly disproves the essence of Odell's sighting, the possibility still exists that they could have done it - and should be included in the analysis. In this context, it surprises me with how much conviction some people say that M & I did not make it - as if this was an established fact. No criticism is heard that these people would overstate their case. And the critics of "Ghosts" on the other hand don't have a problem with someone speculating widely about Mallory's state of mind on his final attempt, about the decisions he made etc. - of which is no proof either. Fact is that we KNOW very little - the altitude they must have at least reached (the place where the oxygen bottle was found, at c. 8480 m), that they died on the descent and that Mallory died of a head injury. However, we can speculate a lot - and if doing so, we can speculate with reason. There is an underlying logic behind the chain of evidence, i.e. if you assume or establish one part, you can only draw certain conclusion, while others will be ruled out as a consequence. One example is Odell's sighting and Anker's opinion that M & I could not have climbed the Second Step crux. If you don't believe Odell, basically everything is possible. If you believe him, and believe Anker at the same time, it could only have been the First Step where he saw them - and then you have to put up with the problem of the topography in Odell's account (which matches the First Step the least) and some aspects in the timing of the climb. This is just to demonstrate the way of thinking behind an analysis of such a case, which is what historians do - no matter whether certain people like a historian's contribution or not. If I would change a thing about the conclusions in "Ghosts" now, it would be only a matter of style - i.e. I would be even more analytical, just laying out each piece of the puzzle and demonstrating where they fit and where they don't, like I've done in my latest piece. But I wouldn't change the conclusions.  Jochen

The book:

Ghosts of Everest; The Search for Mallory & Irvine  by Jochen Hemmleb, Eric Simonson, Larry Johnson   Hardcover - 208 pages (October 1999)  The Mountaineers Books;  Price reduced !

The papers:

Jochen Hemmleb's Research Papers

Daily News: 2/4/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000

Saeed Toossi www.everestdream.com

Saeed has his own Independent Expedition to Everest in Spring 2000, supported by http://www.asian-trekking.com/. EverestNews.com, frankly knew little to nothing about this climber. Therefore, we asked other and himself. Here is what he told us:

"I was born in Tehran/Iran in 1959. I started my climbing activities when I was 14 years old in the North of Tehran. Started college in Iran in 1979. Government closed down universities in 1982. Left Iran in 1983 to come to the US to continue my education. Completed my BS in Computer Science at West Chester University in 1988. Started to work in the field and completed my MS in Software Engineering at Penn State University in 1991. Got back in to climbing again in 1993. My full climbing background is on my site under Experience summary page. " I started my climbing activities when I was 14 years old in the North of Tehran. Started college in Iran in 1979. Government closed down universities in 1982. Left Iran in 1983 to come to the US to continue my education. Completed my BS in Computer Science at West Chester University in 1988. Started to work in the field and completed my MS in Software Engineering at Penn State University in 1991. Got back in to climbing again in 1993. My full climbing background is on my site under Experience summary page. " I started my climbing activities when I was 14 years old in the North of Tehran. Started college in Iran in 1979. Government closed down universities in 1982. Left Iran in 1983 to come to the US to continue my education. Completed my BS in Computer Science at West Chester University in 1988. Started to work in the field and completed my MS in Software Engineering at Penn State University in 1991. Got back in to climbing again in 1993. My full climbing background is on my site under Experience summary page. "

I do live in Washington D.C. Northern Virginia area and work as a Network Engineer.

Much more about Saeed Toossi is on his web site: www.everestdream.com. And much more about Saeed assuming he makes it to Everest !

  • K2 2000: EverestNews.com plans to provide K2 coverage again this year with attempts at the Summit planned in the July-Sept range. For 1999 K2 Coverage see www.k2news.com.
  • At least two climbers who have reached the Summit of K2 will be on Everest in Spring 2000. One as a guide and one as a Expedition Leader. We hope to have the more news on them next week. All the climbers who have reached the Summit of K2 are listed on www.k2news.com .

Daily News: 2/3/2000 Report

  • Jochen Hemmleb Interview: Part Three

Q.) From reading Tilman and Shipton, I gather that the first Westerners to ever set foot in the Everest region of Nepal were Tilman and Houston and their group in 1950. But the Lonely Planet guide "Trekking in the Nepal Himalaya" makes reference to Jimmy Roberts being the first, although they don't give a date.

Can you clear this up for me?   Were Tilman and Houston the first foreigners to see Namche Bazaar and the Khumbu region?  If not, who was? Thanks,

A.) [Jochen]  Walt Unsworth's history of Everest notes that the Anglo-American Reconnaissance of 1950, including H.W. Tilman and C. Houston (not E. Shipton), was the first party to be allowed access to the Solo Khmbu region. Shipton was leader of the British/New Zealand Reconnaissance (including Hillary) the next year.

Q.) Hi Jochen

Obviously the main aim of the next search will be to find Irvine, but do you also have any other objectives, e.g. investigating the old camps 5 and 6, looking for more oxygen cylinders, searching Mallory's fall line or anything else that you think might provide useful information.

A.) [Jochen] I very much hope that we can make this a full-scale historical/archaeological expedition. There is interesting stuff at the various Camp 5 and Camp 6 sites to reconstruct the pioneers' attempts, as well as a number of other research objectives regarding the Mallory & Irvine climb. This would also be an ideal field for new investigative techniques by archaeologists, geologists, geodesists.

Q.) Dear Jochen, A friend and I have been having a discussion about Odell's sighting of Mallory & Irvine. He believes that Odell saw two rocks a la Wyn Harris and Wager in 1933, or otherwise had his perception tricked. I believe that Odell did indeed, see Mallory and Irvine somewhere high up on the ridgeline. My friend went to a talk by David Breashears, and David told him afterwards that there are some notes written by 1924 expedition members that indicate that Odell himself wasn't initially too sure about what he saw. David then went on to say that these notes were left out of the book "Last Climb" for space considerations. I did discover that there is a mention in the book of how Odell's fellow climbers from 1924 had "muttered ungenerously that he became more convinced of what he had seen as the years passed than he was at the time". Would it be possible to learn more about the contents of these notes ?

A.) [Jochen] I don't believe that Odell was mistaken in WHAT he saw, i.e. two moving figures - Odell himself never changed his opinion about this part of his account, and as Graham Hoyland once said, you wouldn't keep looking at rocks for five or ten minutes without realizing it. As for WHERE Odell had seen them, I have a new piece out, discussing this at length. I haven't seen or heard of the notes mentioned - and if they were crucial to the validity of Odell's sighting, it is indeed surprising that they were left out, especially as Breashears has repeatedly called Odell's sighting "soft evidence".  I think the least we can say is that Odell saw two figures, Mallory & Irvine, climbing SOMETHING on the upper North-east Ridge. His constant reference to a "great rock-step", "prominent rock-step" etc. suggest that it was on one of the three Steps where he saw them. His diary simply notes "nearing the base of the final pyramid", which fit the Second or Third Step better than the First, especially when you put Andy Politz's observation from the vicinity of Odell's viewpoint into consideration. The topography in Odell's account, i.e. climbers moving up a snow crest or slope before ascending a short rocky section with "alacrity" and appearing on top of the Step, again fit the Second and Third Step better than the First - and it matches exactly the Third Step. Just something to be noted...

Q.) Hallo Jochen, leider habe ich die Sendung im ZDF verpa_t, in der Eure Suche nach Mallory und Irvine und der Fund von Mallory gezeigt wurde, verpa_t. Nach Angabe des ZDF wird dieser Beitrag , wenn |berhaupt, dann jedenfalls nicht so bald wiederholt werden. Wie und wo kann ich diese Sendung doch noch sehen? Vieln Dank f|r Deine M|he! mfg Barbara

A.) [Jochen] Das Video soll demnaechst im Handel erhaeltlich sein.

Q.) I am confused, why are Tasker and Boardman are credited with the first attempt up the North East Ridge of Everest in 1982?

Didn't the Chinese summit from the North in 1960 and 1975? Wasn't the ladder placed at the second step in 1975? And what is the reference to the pinnacles? I thought the North east Ridge had the 1st, 2nd and 3rd step?

Is there a different route from the North that I  am not aware of? Just wondering because I thought I had these routes up the mountain figured out until I started reading Jochen Hemmleb reports.

Another question, How come no one does the West Ridge? or if they do, we never really here about it like the North and South Summits. Thanks for any help you can give me. Todd

A.) [Jochen] Chris Bonington's expedition made the first attempt of the complete North-east Ridge in 1982, although the Chinese Research Expedition of 1964 went partway up the ridge from the Rapiu La (probably reaching around 7000 m/23.000 ft.). The North-east Ridge has a prominent shoulder at 8423 m/27.636 ft., where it is joined by the North Ridge rising from the North Col. The North Ridge is the route used by the British pre-war expeditions and the Chinese in 1960 & 1975. Today, a last camp is normally established around 8200 m/27.000 on the North Face, away from the crest of the North Ridge. The route then angles up to reach the crest of the upper North-east Ridge c. 200 m horizontally NE of the First Step, at c. 8450 m/27.725 ft. So the classic route from the North is a combination of the North and North-east Ridges.

The Pinnacles are a cluster of rock towers in the upper part of the North-east Ridge BEFORE it is joined by the North Ridge, the point of junction (North-east Shoulder), is sometimes referred to as the "Final Pinnacle". The First, Second and Third Steps are higher up the ridge, closer to the summit.

The West Ridge provides some of the most difficult technical climbing of all Everest ridges and hardly sees any attempts these days (neither do most of the other lines besides the standard routes). The West Ridge has been climbed with variations, i.e. approach to the Lho La either from Tibet or Nepal, or traversing from the ridge into the Hornbein Couloir to avoid the difficulties of the upper part. The West Ridge intigral, i.e. following the crest for most of the way, has first been climbed in 1979 and saw one repetition in 1984. 

Q.) When do you graduate from College ? How is your education going ?

A.) [Jochen] Hopefully this year. How my education is going? Well, guess what is keeping me busy these days... Jochen

The book:

Ghosts of Everest; The Search for Mallory & Irvine  by Jochen Hemmleb, Eric Simonson, Larry Johnson   Hardcover - 208 pages (October 1999)  The Mountaineers Books;  Price reduced !

The papers:

Jochen Hemmleb's Research Papers

Daily News: 2/2/2000 Report

  • Another News & Notes Day
  • The Scouts go to Everest BC: Looks like a Good Cause.

"Our departure date Vancouver, BC, Canada is March 9th. We are part of the scouting movement in Canada, and we have made contact with Nepal Scouting.  We will be doing a reforestation project north of Kathmandu.  Since it is the wrong season to plant, we will be prepping the land for planting, digging holes, making a fence around the area to protect from animals.  We have received $700 US for the sole purpose of aiding this reforestation.  We will do this for a week, and then make our go at the base camp. We just finished this weekend, a Wilderness first Aid course, so we are all well versed on remote First Aid.  But that was one of the  requirements our group layed out early on, to be certified in first aid.  We all had standard first aid, but we had it upgraded to Wilderness.   Also, we're still fundraising like crazy to get some money back into our now cash strapped pockets as we've made the bulk of our payments just recently. Anyways, that's a quick overview, and a reminder, the webpage is at www.everest2000.org. "

Thank you again, Ryan Peachey 1st Port Moody Venturers and Rovers

  • So Many climbers appear to be going to Everest this Year. Frankly, we have never seen so many. As unusual, some plans are not working on, many still have money to raise. This is going to be a wild year of Everest.

Will Irvine be found ?

Will the camera be found ?

How will all the climbers Summit ?

Who will lead ?

Asian-Trekking has announced that the Nepal Women Expedition they are assisting are planning to wait until mid May to attempt the Summit.

Many Famous climbers appear to be returning this year.

Who will not return ? We know it will happen the Question is who and how many.

Be safe and careful.

New Books

Daily News: 2/1/2000 Report

  • Everest Spring 2000:

Juan Oiarzabal's (one of 6 men who has reached the Summit of all 14 8000 meter peaks) Everest expedition is being sponsored by Spanish Television. Therefore, one would assume this Expedition will be well equipped to take a shot at finding Irvine and the camera.

However, Juan while climbing in South America has developed a problem with one of this feet. Juan has left South America, and returned home, so he can save himself for the Everest expedition. However, sources tell EverestNews.com there clearly is concern.

Details are limited, as best.

  • Everest French Climber Marc Batard has retired from climbing 8000 meter peaks after surviving an avalanche on Cho Oyu in September.
  • This was a horrible Autumn (1999) for climbing in Nepal. The question is: Will the Snow melt ?? or stay ?

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