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Asia, Nepal, Ama Dablam, northeast Face and Southwest Ridge Attempts

Ama Dablam, Northeast Face and Southwest Ridge Attempts. Our team was made up of Swiss Marie Hiroz, French Laurence Gouault and Americans Steve Shea and me. We arrived at the rarely visited Base Camp northeast of Ama Dablam in mid-April after an acclimatization trek to Everest Base Camp, where we viewed piles and piles of rubbish. After fixing several hundred feet of rope and observing the face for several days, because of objective danger from séracs overhanging the route we got permission to change our objective to the frequently climbed southwest ridge. On April 30, we four set out from our new 14,000-foot Base Camp for a rapid ascent of the southwest ridge. The next afternoon, after a long, hard day of climbing on the ridge in unusually dry and icy conditions, we turned back 600 feet from the summit in the face of an oncoming storm and darkness. The following day, May 2, we returned to Base Camp.

David Breashears