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Author Topic: April 12: Bruce Matthews: Base Camp to Intermediated Camp and Puja  (Read 5765 times)

bruce matthews

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Tuesday was a day of rest at Base Camp but it revolved around the Puja Ceremony.This is a blessing ceremony for th eclimbers and Sherpas. The sherpa will not go higher on the mountain without this ceremony and a young monk came up from the Rongbuk Monastery to perform this puja. An altar was built with rocks and three flat rocks are placed on this alter with three blobs of yak butter arange vertically on these. A picture of Buddha is also paced prominently in the centre and a large bamboo pole erected with prayer flags drawn away in 5 different directions up the hill and toward the camp.A large dish of mixed fruit is placed on the altar along with beer,rice and flower.Off to the side a fire burns juniper fronds and the prayer flags are passed over the smoke before being erected.Mean time, the the crows are feasting on the butter and we on the flower and beer while all the time throwing rice about while the monk chants from his prayer book and rings a bell between chants.

It started snowing during the Puja but stopped early on...the ceremony went on for about two hours.

On Wednesday morning we woke to an entirely different spectacle...a light dusting od snow overnight had changed Base camp into a whit mooncape!

our yaks were being loaded while we breakfasted and we headed upward to Intermediate Base Camm at around noon.The pace was gentle and we al arrived together at IBC at 5:00 pm.The route up on the glacier is mostly rock but at about 4 kilometers we had our first view of a huge glacial ice wall.

The Seven Summits club expedition has a wel organised mess tent, kitchen tent and tents for the climbers arranged amongst the rocky slopes and up against the large "shark fin" seracs of ice.

The climb up to IPC is not for the feint hearted..the climb is 600 meters and the thin air evident. I had my first serious bout of altitude sickness, not wanting to eat and suffering a severe headache that laste all night...oh for sleep at Base Camp tonight.

We descended to Base Camp in about 3.5 hours arriving in time for lunch and the snow of the previous day had melted away/

We Will recuperates for the next 3 days before heading back up to IPC and then onto Advanced Base Camp at 6500 meters.

My next post will be from Base Camp on return from ABC

Bruce
« Last Edit: Apr 12 2007, 19:50 by 7summits »

m.c. reinhardt

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Hey Bruce,

Rest well after your climb up to IBC. Sorry to hear that you had a bout with altitude sickness but as you know, that is to be expected. Enjoy all the luxuries at BC while you can! And most importantly, stay safe and enjoy the moments. This will be an experience that you will treasure your lifetime!

MC   :)
« Last Edit: Apr 13 2007, 02:55 by mc »
"I go to the mountains for there I find higher ground." m.c. reinhardt

treefrog

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Hey Bruce!
I agree with MC, your reporting is great, thank you. Really enjoying all the pics too, they make a huge difference and bring you that much closer.
Don't let that altitude sickness get to you, you will acclimatise with the best of them, keep those feet moving, our hands are all still pushing you from behind. Quite a long way behind, but they are there nevertheless!
Gary Knigel, and John

bruce matthews

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Hey Gary, Knigel and JB

It's great to know you guys are out there watching this thing unfold and having you behind me!

We are now well rested in Base camp and everyone is in good spirits. I think the acclimatisation programme has been good an tomorrow we will see how I now cope with the hike back up to Intermediate and then beyond. We will make the long walk of 21 kilometers back from Advance Base Camp on Tuesday.

As soon as I am able thereafter, I will post photos and report of the preceding days.

Hang in there and know, that you can text me and I will reply. My mobile remains the same 021 580 580..use your codes!

Stoelle

Bruce

treefrog

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Hey Bruce!
Yeah, You're not going to get away from people who used to stay with you now and then on the long runs...  our beady eyes are going to keep tabs on you. Anytning to keep you on the straight and narrow, which becomes slightly more appropriate in your current situation!
Have tried texting but no luck from my end. Think my set-up here is wrong. Will look into it. But I'm happy as long as you know we are watching with all fingers and toes crossed, and a toast everytime we raise a beer.
Good luck on your next walk up higher...
cheers,
Gary, Knigel, and John

Rosemary

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Dear Bruce,
Hope all is going well.  Looking forward to your next bulletin!!!!  Hope you have got the previous 2 emails I sent to you.   Hope your headaches are over and that you are feeling strong.  I wish I could be at Base Camp for one hour just to stand and gaze at the scenery!
Thinking about you - keep safe,
Lots of love
Rosebud
XX

OzCapie

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Hey Blue,

We are thinking of you-go well

cheers

or is that

Stoelle?

DARRYL

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Hiya Bruce,
Darryl here.Thursday 19April 15h20 CAT.
You must be on the way or at ABC by now.
Are you managing to sleep lying down or at 45 degrees because of a blocked nose?
How many car alarms do you hear up there and barking dogs?
Lutu!
What are the temperatures in the morning? I think of that while jogging in Tshirt and shorts here in Durbs.
Will you have more than one shot at the North Col? Try to leave a meaningful memento up there...it will wash out of the Glacier in about 50 years time.
Looking forward to the next report and trust you are going well.
Only Polly Shorts to go!
Warm regards and keep safe.

Darryl


 

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