We left Lobuche, and heading towards Gorak Shep as we make our way closer to Everest. Yesterday we had a light snow in the evening so today its blue sky with the sun reflecting off the new snow. Furthermore, Everyone is doing well and we are excited to climb Kala Pattar this afternoon! Tomorrow we plan to reach Everest base camp.
Today we awoke to a clear sky in the village of Dingboche, enjoyed our breakfast, then went on an acclimatization hike . Our Team reached an elevation of 16,300 ft. The views of Ama Dablam, Makalu, and Cho Oyu were spectacular as well as the view over the villages of Dingboche & Pheriche. This afternoon we enjoyed coffee and pastries in the french bakery and now are sitting down for dinner, everyone is doing well. We are excited to continue our trek tomorrow and make our way closer to Mount Everest!
We have had 2 great days on the trail trekking up towards Everest base camp. The weather has been cool and moist which is a pleasant suprise as normally its warm and dusty during the first half of the trek. Our friends at the Panorama lodge in Namche gave us a blessing before we said our good byes, then we made our way to the Tengboche monastry for a short visit and then to the Rivendell lodge for the night. Today, we had our first glimpse of Mount Everest and Mount Lhotse, then trekked to the village of Pangboche for a blessing with the high lama, and onwards to the village of Dingboche where we will stay for 2 nights. Everyone is doing well!
Today we awoke to clear skies in the village of Namche ,enjoyed a wonderful breakfast in the Panaroma Lodge and then went on an acclimatization hike up to Everest View Hotel. Mount Everest was hidden behind some clouds but Ama Dablam was visible and also part of Mount Lhotse. We enjoyed some lemon tea as we admired the view and then descended back to Panaroma Lodge in Namche. Everyone is doing well as we slowly make our way up the Khumbu valley towards Mount Everest !
Today we had breakfast at 7 AM in the sunrise lodge in the village of Phakding. Afterwards we made our way through the lush valley and across suspension bridges to the village of Namche, the capital of t he khumbu. We just finished a marvelous dinner at the Panorama lodge and are ready to fall fast asleep! Another great day in the khumbu as we trek closer to Mount Everest!
Today we flew early this morning from Kathmandu to Lukla, and then had a hearty breakfast in the Paradise lodge. We set off and enjoyed a casual day trekking up the Khumbu valley to the village of Phakding. It is wonderful to be enjoying the fresh mountain air and exercising after the long journey to Nepal from the USA. All members of our trekking and climbing team are doing well! The team heading up the trail!
Our Mount Everest climbing team and trekking team is in Kathmandu and scheduled to fly to Lukla tomorrow . They will begin to trek to base camp from there! Today everyone is sightseeing around Kathmandu and excited to get up to the fresh mountain air in the Khumbu valley! Please check out the tracking links above for location of the team as they make their way up to Everest base camp. Stay tuned for more dispatches…
Spring is here! Our Everest & Lhotse climbing team is packed and heading off to Nepal to climb Everest and Lhotse (4th highest). An exciting change for us this year is that our team is involved with the rope fixing from Camp 2 all the way to the summit of Mount Everest, as our local agency, Himalayan Guides Nepal PVT LTD has secured an exclusive contract with the Expedition Operators Association of Nepal for this project. Our expert team of sherpas will be leading the effort in finding the best route and placing the fixed ropes up the Lhotse Face, across the Yellow Band & Geneva Spur to the South Col high camp, up the Triangular Face to the Balcony (27,500′) and onward to the summit! We are excited to “lead the way” up the mountain and prepare the ropes so that our team and others can ascend safely on Mount Everest. We aim to complete this project earlier than in past seasons so that more time is available for teams to make a summit attempt during the good weather window in May. By controlling the rope fixing we can control our climbing schedule better than before.
Check back soon for more photos and video as the expedition prepares to launch!
Madison Mountaineering Everest 2017 Recap, “The Leader” on Everest
Success / Safety:
All of our climbers and Sherpas are off the mountain and now and preparing to head home! We have had a fantastically successful expedition, with all 8 of our clients reaching the summit of Everest, along with 4 American guides, and 15 Sherpas. We also had several of our climbers complete the Everest & Lhotse “peak to peak” combination, where they climbed Mount Lhotse (4th highest mountain) the day after reaching the summit of Mount Everest. This amazing and unmatched level of success among all the teams on Mount Everest is secondary to our number one priority, that all members (clients, guides, & Sherpas) made it safely off the peak.
Rope Fixing to the Summit:
Our team took the lead in partnership with the British – Nepal Gurkha team in fixing the ropes to the summit of Mount Everest on May 15th. This was not part of our original plan, as the rope-fixing project was taken upon by several other teams at the start of the season. Unfortunately, after several mishaps, the lead team had to abandon the rope-fixing project along with their partners. Without any clear consensus on how or when the lines would be put in to the summit, our team stepped up to finish the job. This “mission critical” project was necessary so that teams could begin their summit attempts on Mount Everest, with teams reaching the summit the following day on May 16th and continuing to reach the summit today. We are glad that our team had the capability and prowess to organize and execute such an important task, when no other teams on the mountain could summon such an effort, at such a critical stage in the climbing season.
Our team was at the South Col when several climbers who had pushed themselves very hard on summit day returned and needed critical medical attention. Our guides came to assist with medicine (dexamethasone, etc) and supplemental oxygen. However, what stands out the most is that one of our veteran guides, Brent Bishop, along with our Sherpas, rescued the Slovak Climber from the Balcony (27,500’), lowering him all the way down to the South Col high camp. Our Sherpas gave up their oxygen for him to use on the descent. This heroic effort by Brent and our Sherpas involved abandoning their own summit attempt, just hours away from the top, and spending the day giving their all in an effort to save a life.
We feel very fortunate that our expedition was a stunning success. We attribute this to our careful team selection and training, our top notch Everest guides and leadership, and of course our incredible Sherpa team who we invest heavily in year after year.
Photo: At the top of Mount Everest on May 23rd, 2017
Our Sherpa team in base camp
Descending Mount Everest with a little wind on our summit day!
View from the top!!
Summit ridge of Mount Everest all to ourselves May 23rd, 2017
We are now going to relax and enjoy the post summit euphoria before returning to our friends, families, and loved ones, as well as our busy lives back home! Thanks for following along!
Mount Everest 2017 Guide Billy Nugent
Moved from the Chicago area to Washington in 1999 to attend the University of Puget Sound where he found the Cascade Mountains and ultimately climbing. Before starting out as a professional guide in 2005 he spent the previous several years completing his BS in chemistry, working as a fisherman in Alaska, and as a chemist in Seattle. And for the last ten years he’s been guiding a seasonal circuit that takes him from Argentina and Ecuador, to Alaska, and then back to Rainier and the North Cascades, with an occasional bonus trip to Mexico or Antarctica. Billy loves living outside and enjoys surfing, riding, climbing, and music in his spare time.
Mt. Everest (3 expeditions)
Mt. Rainier (125+ summits via 6 routes)
Denali (9 expeditions)
Aconcagua (8 expeditions)
Vinson Massif (1 expedition)
Orizaba (2 expeditions)
Cotopaxi and Cayambe (8 expeditions)
Mt Baker (4 summits via 4 routes)
Mt. Adams (3 summits via 3 routes)
North Cascades (numerous alpine routes)
Wilderness First Responder, CPR
Outdoor Emergency Care
AIARE Avalanche Level II
Leave No Trace Trainer
AMGA member and Rock Guide Course graduate