Everest Spring 2002 !

 
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Guy Cotter has just returned to BC, after accompanying expedition member Andrew Maluish down the valley to Namche.  Andrew felt he had reached his personal limit, and decided to leave the expedition. He has continued onto Lukla and then Kathmandu for his flight home. 

Saturday, 27 April:  We have just spoken with our guides at C2. They had a vicious windstorm yesterday which tried to obliterate C2. The team spent the entire day fortifying tents and having to collapse some just to stop them flying away. Bill estimated the winds were in excess of 180kph.

Some teams were not so lucky and had their tents destroyed by the winds. The forecast we have been receiving suggested that the winds would only be 60-70 knots at 9000m but the jet stream has obviously hit harder than anticipated. Today is fine (-25C at C2 at 0830) but the forecast tomorrow is for winds to increase again to 60-80 knots for the next few days.

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As a consequence the AC team is heading down to BC.  Twice they tried to move to C3 but the winds knocked them back. Had the weather been kinder and the team managed to get to C3 to stay they would have completed their acclimatization and be poised to make a summit attempt when the weather allowed, and when our excellent Sherpa team had positioned supplies at South Col, C4.

So far no-one has been to South Col and it appears that it will be at least another week before anyone manages to get established there. This would put the earliest summit attempt at around the end of the first week in May.

The wonderful weather we experienced earlier in the season seems to have been replaced by a series of jet stream winds which we hope like heck will not prevail too long!

All members are well and going strongly. Guy Cotter

Dispatches