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

2008 K2 and Broad Peak Expedition

Dispatch Fifty-eight: July 27th 2008

Day Fifty-eight: Final Preparations for Summit Push on Cesan Route

This morning, after getting a great night’s sleep, I went down for our final civilized breakfast prior to all of our summit pushes. Peter, Hugues, and I enjoyed pancakes, some Spanish meat that I had gotten from the Spanish Broad Peak Expedition, an omelet, and Pakistani tea. Afterwards, Hugues and I got busy preparing our packs for our summit push. We sharpened our now very dull crampons, and organized the remaining items that would be vital on our summit day (i.e. foot warmers, radios, down suits, etc.). We are departing base camp tomorrow at 5:30am to go directly to Camp II on the Cesan Route. The Abruzzi climbers who prefer to climb only to Camp I the first day departed this morning (Koreans and Serbians). The rest depart tomorrow with us and will go directly to Camp II as well. I spoke with Mark this morning. He plans on going up the day after our summit day with the other “team 2’s” in the American and Korean expeditions. This will allow him sufficient tent space in the two high camps (assuming that team 1 on the Norit expedition descend past Camp IV after their summit bid) and also will give him slightly better summit conditions, as the winds are forecast to be 10km/hr at 8,611meters vs. the 15km/hr winds forecast on our summit day (the 31st of July). I was slightly relieved by his decision because, although I was perfectly willing to share my small bibler tent with him in Camp III and IV, it will be quite a bit easier to get ready in the morning (as it is very difficult to get dressed and gather your things when you aren’t able to sit up beyond maybe 45 degrees) without a tent mate competing for space. I also heard a proposal  from Hoselito about sharing his small bibler tent at Camp IV. I quickly thanked him for his offer but turned it down, as it was quite a tight fit when I shared the tent with Pemba in Camp II, but sharing the tent with a 6’4” giant of a man the night before one of the hardest summit days I will ever have is out of the question. After this discussion was wrapped up, we had a visit from Lars (one of the Norwegians) who wanted to use Hugues’ BGAN to send some photos I presume for their website. We sent them, charging only what Hugues would have to pay back in France, and then we received yet another visitor. Mario Panzerri and the Italians from the Abruzzi route came up to see the photo that Hugues had of the body at the base of the Cesan Route. They wanted to see if it was their recently deceased friend, Estefano, an Italian who went missing after making the summit of K2 last year. The body was too old to be from last year, based on the amount of decay that was visible. They left somewhat relieved. After this, we checked our email, and wrote our final dispatches before our summit bid. This being said, I will give some details about our plan for the following days; 28th July: Base Camp (5000 meters) to Camp II (6,300 meters) on the Cesan Route, 29th July, Camp II (6,300 meters) to Camp III (7000 meters); 30th July: Camp III (7000 meters) to Camp IV (8000 meters) (Shoulder of K2), meet up with climbers on the Abruzzi; 31st July: 2:00am, depart Camp IV (8000 meters) for the summit (8,611 meters), return to Camp III if feeling fit, otherwise spend the night in Camp IV; 1st August: High Camp to Base Camp. Hopefully, the next dispatch I will write will detail our summit day. Wish us luck!


In Photos:

Left: Nick Rice in front of K2 before his summit push, which begins tomorrow

Right: High Winds (forecast at 100km/hr) blast the three summits of Broad Peak