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3 May: Rest Day at Camp 2, High Winds at Camp 4

The team made a very early start through the Icefall yesterday, and arrived at Camp 2 at about 9am Nepal time. They will be waking up shortly and spending a rest day to acclimatize. Other climbers report a very breezy night further up at Camp 3, and the winds at high altitude were strong enough that the Sherpas decided to delay another day before attempting to carry loads to Camp 4 on the South Col. The jet stream is still fairly close to Everest, but weather forecasts call for it to move further north in the days ahead.

At this stage, the delicate logistics dance really comes into play, as the weather forecast, stocking of camps, and climber acclimatization all have to sync up for a successful summit bid. With lots of other teams on the South Col route, the team will have to keep a close eye on both their own schedule and that of other climbers. A traffic jam up high can leave climbers exposed to a harsh environment and depleting precious oxygen supplies while they wait, so they will have to manage that risk carefully as the summit push draws closer. As always, the primary objective is to keep everyone healthy and bring everyone home safely. As Ed Viesturs, star of the IMAX Everest movie, and first American to climb all fourteen 8000 meterimage peaks without oxygen puts it: “Getting to the top is optional. Getting down is mandatory!”

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