Aconcagua 2002!

Dispatch#20 January 7th, 2002.  Aconcagua Base Camp, Argentina.  Team II Hi this is Ellie Henke calling in from Aconcagua Base Camp, where we are catching up with Group II, when we left off with them they were up at Camp III, at 19,200 feet, hunkered down in a blizzard.  They spent a complete day and night in howling wind and snow and drifts and full on winter conditions up there.  Fortunately this only lasted about 24 hours and afterwards cleared up and turned very beautiful.  The group spent an extra day up at 19.2, they actually took two rest days, one for the weather and one to recuperate from the weather, and yesterday they moved on up to high camp at over 20,000 feet.  

Pat reported that it was very cold up there, and I just heard from him, they started out for the summit this morning, they started early and it was very, very cold.  As a matter of fact, Meredith decided that it was too cold and she and Lhakpa headed on back down to Camp III and decided not to go on to the summit.  But we'd like to congratulate Anita, Guy, Bill and Jay, for sticking it out and going all the way to the top.  We first heard from Pat at about noon today, the first folks were getting up, so that was a real fast trip and Conan arrived at about two o'clock with the rest of the group.  I talked to Pat and everyone is now safe back in either Camp IV or Camp III.  They've been having soup and hot drinks, everybody's pretty tired, so they'll be sleeping tonight, and heading back down to Base Camp tomorrow, all the way down in one push.  So for January 7th, that's it from Aconcagua Base Camp.

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