115 Summit Everest Safely
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Good news from Everest today, given that last weekend’s jam was again in the making. Thankfully, if there were delays on the mountain, they didn’t result in any mishaps that we’ve heard about so far. Approximately 115 people have summited during the previous 24 hours.
We just got off the phone with Grayson Schaffer at Base Camp, who estimated that between another 80 and 100 people would be attempting the summit starting this evening. Schaffer had just run into Kenton Cool, who had just completed his 10th summit. The British mountaineer was mildly snowblind, but was happy to relate that he had fulfilled a long-lost pledge to bring his countryman’s 1924 Olympic medal in alpinism—yes, alpinism—to the summit of Everest.
As for summit bids currently or about to be underway, Schaffer informed us that the Eddie Bauer team led by Dave Hahn would be starting their summit bid shortly from Camp IV, at roughly 11 p.m. local time. He also reported that alpinist Chad Kellogg, who is attempting to set a speed record on Everest, left Base Camp three and a half hours ago and just checked in at Camp II, at approximately 9:30 p.m. local Nepal time. Even though the Khumbu Icefall was in bad shape, and there was up to a foot of slush between Camp I and Camp II (both of which slowed him down), he still clocked a time of 3.5 hours, which is exactly how long he expected it to take. In other words, though there’s still a long way to go, he’s currently on track and doing well. For up-to-date coverage of everybody on Everest, check out Alan Arnette’s blog.