Some of the fashions and hairdos from the Expedition
Members of the Expedition kept a video diary throughout the trip
Episode 1: Kathmandu
Episode 2: Lukla to Basecamp
Episode 3: Basecamp and Beyond
Episode 4: The morning after
You can watch all 4 parts on YouTube
Monday 21st November
The Mera team are safely back in Kathmandu having trekked into Lukla and flown out, avoiding the delays they experienced on the journey in. Their flight back to the UK departs on Tuesday evening and they will land at Heathrow at 06.35am on Wednesday. In a change to the original plan the team have also been accompanied by Dave Bunting. As Expedition Leader Dave had intended to move on to Baruntse but a severe chest infection has force him to return early.
Dave reported back,
“I’m massively disappointed that I can’t go on to lead the team on Barunste but physically I’m not strong enough due to this illness. I’m happy that the team are in excellent hands though and the other leaders (Ewen and Pete) will make all the right decisions. I will be staying in touch with them via sat phone and monitoring their progress closely”
Wednesday 16th November
Bad weather strikes again!
The team that set out at 2.00am this morning have all returned safe to base camp but unfortunately no one reached the summit. Snow, wind and freezing temperatures made progress extremely difficult, but still some team members got incredibly close….. within 20 metres of the summit!
At this point the expedition will split. Those, whose objective was Mera Peak will descend back down the trail via Khote and make the difficult crossing of the Zatrwa La before descending into Lukla.
The remaining team will move forward over the next three days to Baruntse base camp at 5250m.
Dave reported back,
Tuesday 15th November
At 2.00am this morning the team left high camp. Conditions were bitterly cold with wind chill reaching -30 but under head torches they began the slow journey toward the summit of Mera Peak at 6476m.
Roped together in smaller teams they first had to ascend a wide, open glacier, avoiding a number of crevasses. By sunrise at 5.30am they were on steeper ground which eventually led to a classic snow-ridge then on to a final wall that guards the top.
A massive effort is required for last 50m to the summit which is the steepest part of the climb. Individuals must jumar up a fixed rope but once at the top the views can be spectacular. At this point in good weather five of the 8000m peaks can be seen.
Sunday 13th November
The expedition has now reached Mera base camp at 5350m.
Since the last report on Wednesday the team trekked to Tangnag (4360m) then Khare (5000m) before reaching the Mera Glacier and ascending to the Mera La at 5415m. Once at the Mera La they made a short descent to where base camp is situated. On route the team have continued with their research and also had the opportunity to practice the technical skills they will need for their summit attempt.
Monday 14th November
hi we walked out of lukla and i am now 11.11.11 at mumbai on my slow way home, flights have been difficult.
shall stay in touch drop us a line if info needed about amphu mera or what ever.
take good care on those hills boys!
best wishes andy chapman
Wednesday 9th November
The team have enjoyed a well-earned rest day, catching up on laundry, sorting kit, reading books and generally relaxing around camp. The weather is much improved and the team are able to enjoy clear views of Mera.
Dave reflected back over the satellite phone,
“It feels like we’ve been through 4 countries over the past few days. The high pass at Zatrwa La was snow covered and we had to break out our winter boots and crampons. We then moved onto what felt like an Alpine meadow before we made a long steep descent on a narrow trail through the rhododendrons and forests. The last section followed the Hinku river until we reached Khote where we made camp. The landscapes couldn’t have been more different.”
On Thursday the team will depart for Tangnag at 4360m.
Saturday 5th November
The team eventually left Lukla with their equipment and the final team member after 5 challenging days. Some flights had resumed but Lulka was still heaving with over 1500 trekkers trying to get out. From this point on the team will camp.
Sunday 6th November
The team headed for Zatrwa La at 4600m. This was a change to their planned route and would allow them to make up for time lost in Lukla.
Tuesday 8th November