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 American Everest 2002 Expedition

With a Ski Descent planned!

Update Monday, 29 April 2002: Our team is very frustrated at this point. When their tent blew away in the high winds at Camp 4 they lost all of their stoves except one, as well as their cook pots, several full Titanium fuel bottles and other important gear they had stored inside the tent. They are currently checking with several other teams in ABC to see if they can locate one tent, at least one more stove, a cook pot, etc.. [We were wondering how the team knew their tent and gear were blown away--this was reported to them by another team coming down from Camp 4.]

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Turns out the tent that was blown away was Jim's old North Face VE-25 expedition tent, a tent that has served him and a few of the rest of us very well on Denali, Aconcagua and several other places. Although old, the team thought it would be okay to use it as their Camp 4 tent. They had it anchored very well with snow pickets and other types of anchors. The wind was so strong it actually broke the old anchor cords, taking the tent and everything inside it off the side of the mountain. We both felt that the tent's final trip and demise on Everest was a fitting end; just wishing it had not happened, taking their other gear with it.

Health: Jim said all three of them feel pretty good, but are not over their colds, raspy throats, etc.. He confirmed they will really not get any better while they are at high altitude [remember, ABC is at 21,300 feet].

Laptop Problem: The laptop computer is completely inoperative now and the problem(s) cannot be resolved on the mountain. The only resolution at this point is a replacement unit. Scott's parents (Mike and Linda) have already emailed the manufacturer of the laptop, Sony, to see if they can provide any solution, such as a replacement. Jim said just about any laptop will do as long as it is has the operating system up and running and has Internet Explorer and Outlook Express running on it and of course, has a configured and working modem. I asked Jim about the logistics of getting a replacement laptop to the team and he thought it was doable.

The team has found one team that has a couple of laptops, with a DSL-type satellite phone connection. This team will sell time to our guys for $10.00 per minute, so worse case it looks like they may be able to have limited email access while at ABC, but with a very sharp reduction in emails to and from the team, as well as a big reduction in the excellent expedition pictures they have been sending.

Weather: There was around six inches of snow at ABC over the past day and the high winds continue to cause a lot of damage to tents, not only at Camp 4, but also at ABC. Jim said the tent he is in at ABC [brand unknown and supplied by Asian Trekking] has suffered damage from the winds and he woke up yesterday to snow inside his tent from a zipper that was damaged by the winds. He described the winds as sounding like a freight train as they approach and sweep through ABC, buffeting the tents severely and making sleep virtually impossible.

Food: The Asian Trekking supplied cook at ABC is the worst Jim has ever seen on an expedition anywhere and Jim confirmed Scott's earlier dispatch about the food being barely edible at times and not edible at other times. He said he was very glad the team had taken along so much extra food to have at ABC, such as ham, cheeses, etc..

Dispatches
The North Col before the storm... The cook...