Indonesian Expedition First to Summit in 1997
April 26, 1997
By Liesl Clark
Today, members of an Indonesian expedition were the first to reach the summit of Mt. Everest
during this year's climbing season. On the 24th of April they made an attempt to move to Camp IV,
but turned back because deep snow and high winds prevented them from inhabiting the high
camp. The next day, the Indonesian expedition successfully moved from Camp
III up to Camp IV, while breathing supplemental oxygen, putting them in the first position for a
summit attempt this year.
Last night, the team left Camp IV between 10:00 pm and midnight for their
bid for the summit. The Indonesian summit team consists of three Indonesian climbers and
three Russian climbers, including Anatoli Boukreev, a climbing guide who was instrumental in
rescuing stranded climbers above the South Col last year.
As of 10:00 am today, news came in to Base Camp that the team had reached 8,600 meters,
with an estimated hour and a half to go to the summit. David Breashears and Pete Athans, who are at
Camp III, reported that the weather was very good for a summit attempt. The winds were
low and there were very few clouds.
The Indonesian expedition leader, Captain Rochadi, reported this afternoon that two Indonesian
climbers, Misirin and Asmujiono, reached the summit of Mt. Everest between 3:15 and 3:30 p.m.
along with the Russian guide, Anatoli Boukreev, two other Russian climbers and their sirdar
(Nepali climbing leader), Apa Sherpa. The third Indonesian climber turned back before
reaching the summit because the weather had deteriorated during the course of the afternoon.
All of the climbers are currently on their way down to Camp IV. The
descent generally takes about 5-6 hours. According to Captain Rochadi, the climbers
were seriously slowed on their ascent by the waist-deep snow and reduced visibility which
they had encountered on their way to the summit.
In the meantime, David Breashears and Pete Athans are "dealing with altitude and lassitude"
at Camp III, filming, taking the neuro-behavioral tests, and acclimatizing. David Carter
and Ed Viesturs have climbed from Camp II to Camp III to join David and Peter for some
filming this morning. Carter, upon arriving at Camp III radioed in, "I feel pretty
good but a little winded. The last 100 yards was pretty tough. I'm going to try and
get some rest and rehydrate myself. It was very hot coming up today."
Our four Sherpas have made one carry to the South Col already, and Jangbu and Kami are making
another carry there today before they return to Base Camp this evening. News came in yesterday
that both Dorjes were sick at Camp II. A climbing doctor at Camp II, Doug Rovira of the Canadian
expedition, reported over the radio that "older Dorje has bacterial dysentery. He threw up
his antibiotic last night. Young Dorje has fevers and chills and a sore throat. He's on
antibiotics also. Both Dorjes look pretty green. Jangbu and Kami look like a million bucks."
Today, both Dorjes will come down to Base Camp as will David Breashears and Pete Athans for
a few days rest before making their summit attempt.