High winds made for a difficult night last night as it became nearly impossible to keep the tents up. We remain safe and most of the team stayed at camp during the day today rather than make an attempt at Cholera Camp. Three members of our team--Adam, Jen and our leader Gaspar--climbed up nearly to the height of Cholera Camp today to check out the conditions. Now we are watching the weather and carefully weighing up our options. The wind is expected to slow down Wednesday afternoon/evening.
Our first option is to wait out the wind for another day here at Nido and then make a long push to the summit on Thursday directly from this altitude (18,100 ft). The climb to the summit would likely take about 12 hours up (5 hours down) and would make for a long, difficult day. In this scenario, it would be a small team, possibly only three members, who would try for the summit. The others would head down to Plaza de Mulas and wait there.
Our second option is to battle the difficult winds in the morning and try for Cholera Camp (19,700 ft) tomorrow. This would allow for a night of rest before attempting the summit on Thursday in better wind conditions. It would also ensure that more members of the team would be able to go up. (There is a camp near Cholera called Berlin which has an A-Frame which could be used as shelter if required.)
In other news, our team is happy to have Ecuadorian climber and guide, Santiago Quintero with us. Santiago's vast climbing experience is welcome as we weigh up our options today.
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”
- Mark Twain