This autumn’s Cho Oyu expedition went swimmingly!
With a summit on October 1st at 8:20 am.
The ascent was solo without supplemental oxygen or Sherpa support.
Summit day recap
I departed camp 3 for the summit at 1 am, it was chilly out and still with high clouds touching the summit. Three other large teams left camp 3 an hour before, I waited a while longer as I was going solo without oxygen. This hour separation I put between myself and the other teams was for two reasons. Firstly, I wanted to leave closer to sunrise and secondly that I could always be moving to help stay warm. But soon after leaving camp 3 it became apparent that a large traffic jam was going to occur at the rock band at 25,500ft. This traffic jam was the biggest issue during my summit push, as I stood below the technical rock step for about an hour my extremities became numb. I was never able to rewarm them climbing through the chilly night. The summit would have sunlight a good two hours before any other part of the mountain. This thought drove me forward as I wiggled my toes trying to move blood into them.
I made the summit at 8:20 am just as the clouds cleared and the panorama was pretty spectacular with views of Everest, Lhotse, Shisha Pangma and many other peaks in the distance. I spent 15 mins on top. The descent went quickly back to camp 3 and after napping then packing I continued my descent all the way back to advanced base camp arriving a little after sunset. All said the expedition went smoothly.
For photos from the expedition – Click here