Aconcagua 2002!

Dispatch#35 January 23rd, 2002.  Aconcagua Base Camp, Argentina. Team IV Hi this is Ellie calling in for Aconcagua Team IV, led by Willi Prittie and Eric Remza. We've heard from the group, this if for January 23rd, and today they just moved up to Camp I, at 16,200 feet.  Willi reports that everybody is doing well, although they have two people that were pretty tired by the time they got up there and they got the tents put up, but that's pretty normal after a long move to a new elevation like that.  We're expecting that by tomorrow morning, everyone will feel fine, maybe a few headaches but should be going well.

Tomorrow they're planning on carrying more equipment up to Camp II and they'll be leaving at about 11:00 in the morning, especially once the sun hits and warms things up a little bit.  It; gets pretty chilly, probably down into the teens at night, so they're definitely happy when the sun hits in the morning.  We're all keeping our fingers crossed that our good weather will hold.  We've had about thee days of good weather, after a good week of storms, about seven straight days of snow, so we're hoping that is' out of it's system and that the weather has now changed for the better.

So the team is now ensconced in their tents, they've had a good dinner, and are now expecting to get a good night of sleep there at 16.2.  An item of interest, Willi repots that they have had a visit from a cara cara.  This is a bird of prey on the falcon family and here in South America fills the same ecological niche that crows and ravens do in North America.  So the team has had a great time watching a cara cara walking around their tents there at Camp I.  So maybe they'll see it a few more times other places on the mountain as well, it's always possible.  So that's it from Team IV, they haven't come up with a name yet so I don't know if they're going to by now, and hopefully we'll hear from them tomorrow.  That's it from Aconcagua Base Camp.

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