AAC Publications - http://publications.americanalpineclub.org

Asia, Nepal, Mount Everest, Spanish Attempt

Mount Everest, Spanish Attempt. The Expedición Tximist was composed of Juan Ignacio Lorente, leader, Angel Landa, Luis Abalde, Alfonso Alonso, Juan Cortazar, Luis I. Domingo, Juan C. Fernández, Ricardo Gallardo, Rodolfo Kirch, Francisco Lusarreta, Luis M. Sáenz de Olazagoita, Felipe Uriarte, Angel A. Rosen, Fernando Larruquert, Angel Lerma and Julio Villar. After almost a two-week delay waiting for baggage, they began to fly from Kathmandu to Lukla on February 26, but were not at Base Camp below the Khumbu Icefall at 17,800 feet until March 25. They attacked the icefall at once, finding it rather more difficult than usual. After setting up an intermediate camp at 19,000 feet in the icefall, they occupied Camp I at 20,000 feet on April 5, Advanced Base at 21,125 feet on April 12, Camp III at 22,800 feet on April 18 and Camp IV at 24,450 feet on April 26. Throughout they had problems with the Sherpas and several narrow escapes from avalanches. The following entries have been selected by the Editor from the diary kindly provided by Señor Lorente. “April 30: Abalde and I set out from Camp IV without porters heavily loaded with rope to fix, pitons, oxygen, etc. and got to the Yellow Band. The Sherpas in Camp IV were to have accompanied us but declared themselves sick and descended. May 4: Landa, Villar and four Sherpas climbed to the South Col, fixing ropes above the Yellow Band. May 9: Rosen and Uriarte are leaving Camp II for III to gain successive camps and attempt the summit. May 11 : The same pair are climbing from Camp IV to the South Col (26,200 feet) with seven Sherpas. May 12: We suppose that Rosen and Uriarte have established Camp VI but we have no radio contact. May 13: At 6:15 P.M. we got news from Camp II. After sleeping at Camp VI (28,000 feet), Rosen and Uriarte were ready at dawn and tried repeatedly to set out but were driven back by high winds. They waited until ten, when they descended, without oxygen to save it for the next attack. May 14: More news: they spent the night without sleeping bags on the South Col. Today they will descend to Camp IV without oxygen but we fear there are no sleeping bags there either. Felipe (Uriarte) has a frozen hand. Last night an avalanche fell into Camp III and partially destroyed a tent with five Sherpas in it. They escaped unharmed, but have descended to Advanced Base, hysterical.” A second summit attempt failed because of very high winds. Gallardo waited on the South Col from May 22 to the 26th, hoping to climb with various partners, but finally, on his birthday, had to quit. (Information from Juan Ignacio Lorente, Federatión Española de Montañismo.)