Text Box: Nicholas Rice
Extreme High Altitude Athlete
Text Box: Xpedition 8000

2008 K2 and Broad Peak Expedition

Dispatch Thirty-three: July 2nd, 2008

Day Thirty-three: Climb from Base Camp to Camp II (K2; Cesan Route)

Today, Hugues, Karim, Qudrat, and I woke up at 3:00am, packed our things, had a quick breakfast, and began the climb to Camp I around 4:00am. I was carrying a tent, my sleeping bag and some food, but thanks to my quick recovery from my intestinal issues last week, the climb took only four hours. We reached Camp I surprised to see a Serbian (Hoselito) inside our tent. He said that the weather the previous day was horrible and it was impossible to continued onto Camp II where he had his tent. He swore to us that he hadn’t used any of our gear, so we gathered the things we were going to take to Camp II and got on our way. The day was quite warm, and this made the remaining three hours to Camp II feel like an eternity. The route was quite steep, and thanks to our delay at Camp I, we were trailing behind Wilco’s group. I was surprised to see Court descending the fixed lines below Camp II. He said that the weather had been horrible and that they had had to cancel their plans to climb and fix above Camp III, and instead had only reached Camp II. I later came to find out that Mark (the Australian in the Norit Expedition) had fallen victim to carbon monoxide poisoning in Camp II. He began his descent shortly after Hugues and I arrived. Upon our arrival, I was pleased to find out that Gerard had been busy making my tent platform for me. He did this because Pemba, a member of their expedition, needed to share the tent with me. I was pleased to be able to help a member of their large commercial expedition. After what Wilco had inferred about independent climbers a few days previous, it seemed a fitting gesture for me to offer my equipment to a member of his group. I spent most of the day in Hugues’ tent, as we constantly prepared hot drinks to combat dehydration. We set up my small bibler tent on the small platform, and secured it to the old fixed lines and with some bamboo sticks. After the sun dropped away from the horizon, I made my dinner in my tent, chatted with Pemba for a bit, and went to sleep. As it was my first time in Camp II, I was quite content to spend an additional day there to acclimatize and allow my tendons to recover from the steep climb to Camp II . During the night, it was quite windy, and spindrift was going everywhere.