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

2008 K2 and Broad Peak Expedition

Dispatch Forty-nine: July 18th, 2008

Day Forty-nine: Gloomy Rest Day in K2 BC; Visit to Broad Peak BC

Yesterday afternoon, around 5:30pm, Qudrat and Karim arrived in Base Camp from their foray to Camp III. Around 7:30pm, Hugues also returned, understandably exhausted from over twelve hours of climbing. We all had dinner together at 8:30pm; the three French plan to go to Camp III on the Cesan route now, using our tents. They reached only Camp II on the Abruzzi route at 6,650m elevation so they want to sleep higher on the Cesan route. Camp III is at approximately 7,000m elevation. They left base camp at 1:00am after their phone call to France. This morning, Hugues and I had a relaxed breakfast around 8:30am. After taking a powerful anti-inflammatory last night, my neck is feeling a lot better, and I finally was able to get a very good night’s sleep. After breakfast, Hugues and I checked email, browsed through each other's photos and videos, and worked on our dispatches. Last night, I set up plans to visit Badia and Mauricio and have lunch with them in Broad Peak base camp. Hugues and I left K2 base camp around 11:45am so we wouldn’t be late. Lina arrived yesterday back in Broad Peak base camp after spending a night in Camp III. Hopefully we will have time to also visit her in the Spanish base camp; it is about another hour down the moraine from normal Broad Peak Base Camp. After receiving a very discouraging forecast for K2 (in which it says that we may not have any weather windows until August), I may focus my attention temporarily on Broad Peak, as it is possible to summit Broad Peak with more wind on top than K2. I arrived at Badia and Mauricio’s Base Camp around 1:00pm, and had an authentic Mexican lunch with them. Hugues received some bad news from home, and decided to head back to K2 base camp. As we were chatting, I came to find out that the story the Serbian in K2 Base Camp had told me about Mogens Jensons was not quite true. Apparently, according to Badia and Mauricio, he was in fact wearing a helmet, and he wasn’t hit in the head by a rock, but somewhere in the mid section of his body (i.e., arm or chest). We chatted some more about the route below Camp I, which had turned into a waterfall gushing water and large rocks out at climbers. After lunch, we headed down to the Spanish camp about forty minutes down the moraine. I talked to Lina for awhile. She had just come down from sleeping at Camp III, and was feeling quite well and acclimatized (aside from a slight cough that she had developed after Everest). She showed me her pictures from Everest, and others she had taken of us in Morocco. Badia and Mauricio stopped in the French camp to ask about the weather, but all the French were up on the mountain, and only one Basque was there; he is waiting on a helicopter evacuation because he has been suffering from severe stomach problems for quite some time. I received news of eight summits on Broad Peak. Two by Spanish (who arrived while I was in the Spanish Camp; one had pretty bad frostbite on one toe), four Russians, and two others. After Badia and Mauricio arrived, we all spoke about teaming up for a quick two day summit push on Broad Peak in the coming days. As the weather is not cooperating for our summit push on K2, I am considering using the less ideal weather window in the end of July for Broad Peak. Most at K2 base camp say that there won’t be a weather window on K2 till the beginning of August; so this gives me time to attempt Broad Peak and then rest for my summit push on K2. Also, teaming up with the Spanish and the Mexicans gives us a big enough group to break trail to the col. We will have to look into the weather in order to time our summit push so that our summit day is as nice as possible, but we are fully expecting it to be windy on top.


In Photos:

Left: Route from Camp I to Camp II on the Cesan (K2)

Right: Broad Peak viewed from just below Camp II on the Cesan Route (K2)