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Chomolungma

Discussion area for peaks outside of the USA.
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Chomolungma

Postby Gabriel » Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:12 pm

I'm working on the seven summits. I have left, Asia, Antarctica, Australia and Africa. I have been trying ot avoid Asia, but realize that at 45 my time is now. I can do the others after I retire. My problem is the pre an post monsoon seasons don't work with my schedule as a teacher. Does anyone have information on the mid monsoon weather window that allowed Messner to complete his epic solo, maskless climb in 1980?

G

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby Shawnee Bob » Mon Feb 09, 2009 9:08 pm

Advice: Sabbatical. There's your window.
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Re: Chomolungma

Postby jmforsythe72 » Tue Feb 10, 2009 8:03 am

I am a teacher as well and struggle with the same dilemma. If you have enough days saved, you can make it. I have about 30+ days saved, and with permission from front office, can make it work. The only problem I have is financing the trip. If you offer some sort of deal where you give updates each day (climate/geology/history/etc.), they are more likely to see things your way. I was able to gain confirmation, but could not afford the trip.

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby curtiswm » Wed Feb 11, 2009 8:09 am

According to his book " The Crystal Horizon ", Messner used modern meterology methods, scientific work on Himilayan monsoons by Helmut Kraus, information from the local Tibetans, and his own observations to determine his "window" of opportunity. He summited on August 20, 1980.
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Re: Chomolungma

Postby skiwall » Wed Feb 11, 2009 9:31 am

There are a ton of papers on the Asian monsoon, and I could get some for you, if you'd like. Monsoons have "break" periods (little rain) and "burst" periods (lots of rain). Unfortunately there's a lot of variability year to year, and you can't predict when you'll get a break a few weeks ahead of time. I'm not an expert on the Asian monsoon, so maybe there are breaks typically for a few days at a certain time during the monsoon, similar to how the Intermountain West typically gets stuck in high pressure in January for a week or so. You know it's probably going to happen, but you can't be positive until it does happen. I suppose you could always head over and wait and see if you get a break, but you could end up getting totally screwed.
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Re: Chomolungma

Postby Gabriel » Wed Feb 11, 2009 9:39 am

Jmforsyth: I have only used one sick day in 23 year of teaching, so I could take a whole year off. The problem is that I would feel like I'm abandoning my students. I work mostly with physically challenged and autistic kids and they get attached.

Curtism: Thanks! The Crystal horizon is my favorite mountaineering book. I have a signed copy that I bought in tirol/Italy.

Skiwall: Now you have me really interested. In your opinion, is this worth pursuing. I believe in taking long shots.

G

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby skiwall » Wed Feb 11, 2009 9:46 am

Gabriel wrote:Skiwall: Now you have me really interested. In your opinion, is this worth pursuing. I believe in taking long shots.


I will not be responsible for you going over there and getting screwed. You can't ever trust the weather! :)

However, if you want me to look around and see what I can find to see if that's a possibility, I can definitely do it. My research is on the North American Monsoon, so I'm not too familiar with the Asian monsoon, but some of the other people in my office may know more.
"A good woman knows her place is in the backcountry." - PW '08

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby viejo » Wed Feb 11, 2009 10:15 am

I claim absolutely no knowledge in this subject. But I'd think you need to find out how picky you can actually be relative to getting on a climbing permit. I'd guess client based guided trips would shoot for the season with greatest probablility of success. To go "off season" might make buying into a permit more difficult.

Good luck!

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby Alan Arnette » Wed Feb 11, 2009 10:34 am

Gabriel wrote:I'm working on the seven summits. I have left, Asia, Antarctica, Australia and Africa. I have been trying ot avoid Asia, but realize that at 45 my time is now. I can do the others after I retire. My problem is the pre an post monsoon seasons don't work with my schedule as a teacher. Does anyone have information on the mid monsoon weather window that allowed Messner to complete his epic solo, maskless climb in 1980?

G


I am assuming you want to go with some kind of team or at least Sherpa and leverage on-mountain support. The biggest problem is that there is no support on Everest from either side outside of April/May and Sept/Oct/Nov - pre and post monsoon. Messner was quite the solo climber as we all know so this was not an issue for him.

On the south side (Nepal), the Icefall is the first hurdle and requires dedicated Sherpas (Icefall Doctors) to fix the route each season. On the north it is having the route fixed. All in all staying "in-season" is most practical.

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby Gabriel » Wed Feb 11, 2009 2:26 pm

Alan: I always have to do big climbs on a very tight budget so guided groups are out. I also have done quite a few solos, so I'm comfortable being alone. I realize that this is about as serious as it gets, but it has really caught my attention as something interesting and worthwhile.

Skiwall: Thanks for the offer, but I'm going to start researching this myself. If you happen to come upon any useful information please pass it on.

G

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Re: Chomolungma

Postby Scott P » Wed Feb 11, 2009 6:03 pm

Since Everest has only been climbed three times in August, it would be hard to predict what conditions would be up there during the monsoon since there are not many people to ask. No one can really predict it. Also, no one has ever climbed Everest between June 15 and August 18.

The reason Messner did it in August was that he could have the mountain to himself then. If you did climb something like Everest during the monsoon, at least make sure you are one of the world's top mountaineers. :wink: Everest has been climbed more times in winter than in the monsoon.
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