Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Carry Day to Camp I (February 17th)

Today we carried up half of our group and team gear to Camp I, where we cached it and returned down to Base Camp. This format—climb high, sleep low—is a technique we will utilize throughout the entire expedition. It was a pretty uneventful day until the descent to Base Camp. About halfway down (it is a 7 hour climb up and a 3 hour climb down), two of my teammates were traversing a steep scree (loose rock) slope and one of them slipped a little, causing several relatively large rocks (about the size of a melon) to come rolling down. As I watched, these rocks picked up speed and then slammed into one of my teammates. Suddenly we all heard screams of pain as she crumpled to the ground. Luckily for her and all of us, the rockslide did not get any worse. However, the injured teammate was not in good condition. A big rock had struck her right leg above her knee. She could walk (barely), which meant it was not broken. One of the guides assisted her down to Base Camp while we went on ahead. Not sure whether she will be able to continue with us. I certainly hope so! She is a trooper and has a very high pain tolerance, so I’m confident in her ability to summit. What a scary way to end the day though. I hope no one else is injured.

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