Descending Toward Base Camp
May 24, 1997 by Liesl Clark
Voices from all camps on Everest are coming through the radio this morning as
people are beginning the big move down and off the mountain. Dave Carter and
Ed Viesturs are at Camp III and will be moving, with Guy Cotter, down to Camp
II and possibly down to Base Camp today. It remains critical to get Carter to
Base Camp as soon as possible, as he continues to suffer from the effects of
high altitude. All are communicating with us regularly by radio.
David Breashears, Pete Athans, Veikka Gustafsson, and Tashi Tenzing are
beginning their move down from Camp IV and will join Ed, Carter, and Guy for
the descent from Camp III to II. All will report in from II to let us know if
they will continue down to Base Camp. The winds are high on the South Col
(Camp I V) and everyone is making a hasty retreat down as quickly as possible.
Late last night, John Tinker's group reported that one of their Mexican
climbers, by the name of Hugo, was last seen on the South Summit and had not
returned to the South Col. As of early this morning, all teams that were
attempting the summit today—including Todd Burleson's team and a team of
Sherpas going up for a rescue attempt - were turned back due to high winds.
Several attempts have been made since then and we've all been holding out for
the possibility of his return. At this writing, Jamie Clarke from the Canadian
team who is on the South Col reports that he sees a Sherpa approaching Hugo
who is ambulatory and moving down toward Camp IV. It is feared he may have
We will report back when everyone is down safely here at Base Camp.