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Camp two

8. August (day 17) I feel much better this morning, though I don't really feel hungry despite all the good food available. And this missing hunger last throughout the expedition, and I end up loosing 8 kg. during the time mountaineering part takes.

Walking through the icefallI join up again with Peter and Steijn on our quest for camp two. We use some hours to get up and past the crevasse section, while the the visibility deteriorates. The last section before camp two is quite steep and I end up joining up with a guy from England, just as eager to reach camp two as I. We soon reach camp two at 6200 meters, while Peter and Steijn never show up that day. Still, I am not worried, because they are experienced mountaineers and carry tent, sleeping bag and other necessary gear to make camp on the way up to camp two.

The gang of two arrived earlier in the day with all their belongings, while Jim to my astonishment tell he already has climbed the mountain yesterday, after a direct walk from camp two to the summit - a grueling long day. He did it despite that an experienced 8.000 meters climber told him it couldn't be done. And he is just as happy as he should be, securing at least one success.

I end up in using a tent belonging to another expedition because Sieg's is a very small two persons Bibler high altitude tent. Sieg asked the expedition leader then they were up dumping a load and said he ok, ensuring me a night sleep next to a small mountain of delicious freeze dried food.

9. August (day 18) The gang of two enjoy a acclimation rest day in camp two, while I am forced to walk down to the icefall to pick up my bike, left here three days ago. I can not help wondering what climbers have said while passing a orange bike sticking up from the snow on their climb up to camp two. I pass Peter and Steijn tent on my way down as they are about to pack their things. They ask me to bring their ropes and harness with me, which they dumped just after the crevasse section, making sure not to loose it. I reach my bike and start the walk up again, while the weather deteriorates, sheltering me inside a small world only lessening to my gasping breath. It start snowing while the wind lowly increases in force and I soon abandon all thoughts of picking up rope and just ascend as fast as possible to be sure to find camp two again. Becoming lost up here is definitely no fun. I follow the track and reach Peter and Steijn as they are about to leave for camp two and we eventually end up in camp two.

Him walking downn from camp 2,510. August (day 19) The gang of cyclists are lucky to be able to take advantage of Jim's well done summit, when he generously offers his help to carry a load up to camp three for us, while we got problems enough to carry the burden of our bikes. The problem is that the bikers are quite lazy and first leave camp at noon, way too late for reaching camp three, making it a camp 2.5 somewhere instead. It becomes a long off-day for Sieg, struggling as never before during this climb and we eventually end up camping at around 6.500 meters by the end of the day. Jim drops his load and walk back to camp two again, while we set up camp in the intense cold. The summit is now for sure gone, but the record is still within reach, as we only have to cycle above 7.000 meters to make it and we exited fall asleep, hoping the good weather to last for at least one more day.

Sieg zoom in on me with his camcorder just before we go asleep and want me to say something intelligent about tomorrow, but I cannot even finish a complete sentience in my air-gasping brain and what comes out is even worse.