Highlights and Hardships: Sept 10 – 25

The past two weeks have been filled with a lot of activity. Here is a breakdown of the good and the hard.

– Solo scrambling up Chukkhung Ri, a 5500 meter peak.

– Seeing the large Imja lake (1 km long) for the first time and realizing how catastrophic a flood there could be.

– Enduring a Friday the 13th sleet and snowstorm on the 2.5 mile commute from Imja lake to our base camp.

– Helping out with UT Austin’s glacier measurements and learning a lot in the process.

– Sampling ice high up on Imja Tse (Island Peak).

– Enduring a chest cold/congestion high up on Imja Tse.

– Having the huge Lhotse wall, at about 10k ft. higher, greet us each morning at base camp (when it wasn’t misty).

– Witnessing avalanches and calving (collapsing ice) in the region – you really get a feel for the region when you sit, wait, watch and listen.

– Crossing the Cho La, a mountain pass at 5300 meters very early in the morning – it snowed the night before and the moonlight glinting off the peaks was spectacular.

– Meeting up with my field team from CU; exhausted after lugging 55 lbs of gear across the Ngozumpa glacier, so very happy to see them!

– Hiking to Cho Oyu base camp, 16 miles RT, in one push, to recover instruments.

– Getting good data on both ends of the glacier.

– Enduring a “polar plunge” at the outlet of Ngozumpa glacier, when the boat capsized.

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