Few days ago, we finally woke up and actually packed all our gear and headed up the fixed lines to move to camp 4. The play was to summit the next day. It took us a record 4:30hrs to reach and then to quickly set up camp.
Nothing fancy just our sleeping tents, and a small wall for our toilet. There is no kitchen tent, as we are very high and it is a waste of resources to carry unnecessary gear. We bearly left our tents. As we were supposed to rest for our summit push.
The wind pattern was, very windy in the morning and then died down by noon, so our decision was to see of its the same the next day to make our move.
The next day, woken up at 7:00am with hot coco and oatmeal. We had to get ready, quickly me ant the team put on all our layers getting ready For the cold long summit day. I was ready to go by 8:00am so as the team I even did a voice dispatch to everyone wishing me luck. It became 9:30am and still nothing, from the lead guide. Then we heard the news it’s too windy we won’t be moving as it increases the risk of frostbites. So we decided to stick one more day.
That day at camp 4 was spent doing nothing but think of the summit, we wanted to go badly. We were also afraid that the weather might close on us and we will get stuck on the mountain again, and this time we will run out of food and will be forced to head down.
After a day filled with mixed emotions, we woke up the next day to a beautiful quite day. Where there was no wind, no snow, and not cold at all. we put on our summit clothes, leaving out the big parkas and down pants in our backpacks just in case the weather changes.
We leaft for he autobahn, which is the first step on the summit participants push. A 300m wall of snow and rock, our team zoomed up in no time catching up with the teams that left before us. That made a bit of a traffic jam as the team infront of us didn’t let us pass on the autobahn. It is a very steep area and there were anchors that we needed to clip in to, and when there is a team infront of you that won’t let you pass that causes a line up and increases the risk drastically.
Anyway we managed, to pass hem by zebra rocks and from there onwards the path was open for my team. In total of 6hrs we managed to read pick hill the last steep part before the summit. By that time I see the summit and I know I’m there just another 20min walking over a knife ridge. A knife ridge is a ridge hat is very narrow, and in this case it’s so narrow that is about halt my boots. The trick is not to think about it and just walk. The moment you think of it, bye bye.
Approching the summit, we reached with tears and glory. Hugging one another what an amazing day. That was so warm we were wearing our liner gloves. The guides never had such a warm summit day this time of a year. We were so lucky, especially myself and some of the team get extremely cold hands. That was a blessing from God. We quickly to our summit pics, raised our countries flags up high. Then did something everyone there didn’t suspect. We started singing victory songs very loud, that the next team was also trying to copy (they failed).
As we were only half way, and had to also head down to camp 4, we had to leave. The journey back was quick,as we got lower we felt the oxygen and moved faster reaching the autobahn. Where it became very technical again. But the anchors were perfect this year that realy helped. So we reached camp in 3:30hrs decent and all crashed in our tents and were really tired by the long summit day.
We slept, without fully absorbing the fact that not only we summited but all four of us are 7 summiteers and firsts for our countries. It takes a while to sink in.