What a shitty arrival we had.
Literally 30 mins after tipping our porter teams we could see some severe weather coming our way. Pete and I hurriedly got two hike tents up and with the first winds and flurries of snow we just got our kit in. We got inside our bags and just huddled.
What you might not realise is we will be using a site which previous years other teams have used, others teams have made it there home for the duration of their expedition.
Sadly other teams do not follow our ethical approach and with every stone/rock turn you must be prepared for a “Percy poo” to raise its ugly, frozen head.
So it’s a long drawn out process to actually prepare a camp site as you want, actually days not hours.
Summit Karakoram and the base camp team worked on between the winds and managed to get a kitchen and cook area set up with 4 hours. These guys are amazing, hardcore veterans of this gig, they just know what to do.
After some rather broken sleep where you wake each hour to acknowledge a thumping headache just reminding you to slow down.
Although peeing in a bottle is standard having a poo is just another hurdle to overcome, and the sooner you address it the sooner it becomes almost, almost normal. “Was normal as clenching your buttocks, wobbling over snow covered rocks and squatting behind a rock and pooing into a plastic bag can be”
This morning the rocks, ice and dips were all covered in snow to a walk to find the poo rock was bloody treacherous. As you’d expect at altitude, with weird food, weird sleep, weird weather one doesn’t produce “desirable” poo , needless to say explosions ensued!
Because even the slightest of exercise makes you out of breath the clean up and disposal, yes, yes it all goes into a bag, all debris needs taking away with you it’s never a quick job.
Pete and I met for breakfast, tea, pancakes and eggs cooked by the ground crew, although the mess tent was bloody freezing the food was good, well considering the craziness of the set up.
After the usual morning conversations,
“You got a headache?”
“Did you sleep?”
“You had a poo yet?”
“You washing today”
We both retired to our snow bound tents to sort our admin out.
For me that’s getting back into my sleeping bag to get a few emails pinged off.
Setting up the solar charger and having and very well deserved wet wipe wash….. where I can boat the ability to wash all over with just 2 wet wipes including a double wipe “down there”
I can here the SK team working away setting up there kitchen for real, they are simply amazing and I’ll try and get some images when I can.
We expect that our mess tent will at some point be double skinned and possible have roll mats on the ground to insulate us, but it might take a day or so.
Inside this tent we will set up our GRC BGAN and start to transmit as expected.
We will also have our medical base set up by Dr Cath Moran who has already helped us out with almost instant feedback on a symptom.
I think we have been very fortunate as the snow last night and today would have made the progress from Goro 2 to base camp really hard is not impossible so our decision to push on paid off. Pete an I have already taken a look at the route to camp 1 then to camp 2, personally although straight forward it looks bloody steep. But I guess that’s to be expected as we have still to gain 3vertical km.
The snow has started again today, big thank you to Ady at WX who supplies us with weather forecasts and because of this we has been able to make decisions based on data rather that guess work.
Herdy is causing some what of a stir up here with many Pakistanis wanting their picture taken with him. We will try and get a few images when we can.
Scouts, I’m going to do a short bit to camara today if my head stops pounding about resilience and volunteering so use as you see fit.
My gorgeous good looks have now been replaced by knarly sun burnt skin so anything to-camera will be at a distance.
Petes and I are super stoked to be able to “borrow” military data and lines of communication, this might last a day or a week but nothing is guaranteed, so we are trying our best whist we can. Whilst is snows solar is difficult so bear with us
I hope all are well in the Uk.
Our adventure keeps on giving.
I’m writing this at Base camp, Broad Peak in another snow flurry, tucked inside my sleeping bag with Herdy.
The important bits
Pete and I are doing well, if a little tired and exhausted but are super motivated to have got here.
Today we are resting, well active rest getting the camp site ready for our stay, it means setting up essential areas, hygiene, cook tent and sleeping.
Pete has already, through booming headaches started to discuss the routes we will try and the direction we will go, I have in true political style ignored the topic until rest has been had or I’ve had more coffee.
Compared to previous years it’s a ghost town here with very very little expedition here so things are very different.
Please keep commenting, on here, following Instagram and generally letting us know you are there.
PLEASE follow the request when writing, data is an expensive commodity.
Best wishes all