DISPATCH #5, April 17, Base Camp at 5150m. Everything worked as planned so far. Yesterday we reached the Tibetan Basecamp at Everest at around 5200m. It was a strange experience both physically and mentally to drive up to basecamp with a jeep.On other expeditions it is necessary to hike a major stretch to get to the base camp allowing a good acclimatization and enough time for mental preparation.
We will now definitely needed some time to get used to the new surroundings here. There are for example two huge tent towns built by a Swiss and a Russian expedition organizer. One of them is famous for inviting all mountaineers to a party with disco and fireworks.
We are very thankful for the high quality service our partner Amical Alpin provides and were soon able to pitch up our own production tent. Given this special opportunity we immediately started our work with Alex from Bayerischer Rundfunk. Regrettably we were confronted with a technical obstacle. Our solar-charged batteries seem to have difficulties with the cold (-10°C during night) so now we are trying to heat them up with the help of the high altitude sun.
Today we also put up our first SympaTex Trash Collector bin. The bin is an expedition barrel to collect all the rubbish that is often left behind and litters the environment in many camps and of many paths. Our aim is to put up more along the way to the upcoming camps.
The weather is not good yet: cloudy in the morning, cold at night and snowy on the flanks and in the camps that are higher up. The “big one” (Everest) once again showed up during the afternoon after hiding behind clouds during the last days. I hope this means that the weather will brighten up tomorrow.