In life there is nothing more important than to be safe and healthy. This, you don’t understand until you face with it. Almost 2 months on Expedition in Lhotse South Face was a great experience. Learned so much, meet so many good and weird people, climbed hard – never harder before / climbed ice and rock, many nights without sleep, many hours in altitude, many nights thinking and planning … never had this pressure on my mind before, never felt this alone before, never watched more movies then now … and so on.
Overall, I would do the same again, and again and again. Lhotse South is considered as the most difficult route in the world. Just now, I am really able to understand half of it. People got sick, frostbite, and many of them died.
Our climb was more or less like this:
Base Camp to C1 – 750 meters climbing is mixed climb / mainly snow and ice and sometimes rock, but quite steep. C1 – is based between two big rivers of snow showers/ quite safe but all the time snow-showers between these two culuars which made C1 all the time with snow and cold. I have climbed 4 times to C1 (slept few of them)- carry all my gears and food and tried to climb at C2 – but it was impossible since the weather wasn’t the best. One time we went to the half way to C2- just before the coloar started – we had to return and try to climb to C2 another time because of the weather.
The last time that we could pass the culuar and reach C2, was the most amazing part of this hole expedition. C1 – C2 / is around 1250 meter climb and we did it for 7-8 hours. In the beginning we were climbing in steep section rock and ice, after we had to traverse through the huge culuar, which looked quite near but it took quite long to climb — not just because of the steep but also the snow condition was really hard.
The third part is rock and ice on a traverse and with the view with the famous colour and the big steep face. I really liked climbing this part, using all my body to climb makes the climbing more interesting.
We used the fix rope, but this climb is not so much about the rope – but its about being balanced in small holes of rocks and ice, with big boots and crampons.
Passing coloar, we had to do it fast. It seems like we are passing a river bad – snow all time falling and sometime rock. If you are lucky, you pass it without problems, but this doesn’t happen often. Many of our sherpa team got caught from snow showers and avalanches on this sections. Lack of oxygen and a lot of snow, makes it even harder.
All the time we were climbing in snow-showers. In the beginning I was stoping to wait to be more calm, and after some time, I kept climbing since they never stop.
After the coloar, it comes around 300-400 meters climbing in 65% steep terrain of blue ice. I had the hard time here. I have already spent a lot of energy, entering on new OXY zone (7000m), no steps, had to swing my crampons for 4 times to be able to step my feet or my ice tools. Everyone suffered here.
But, when I reached the C2 I felt like I already Summit another 8000 meters peak.
On this day we were climbing 5 members, Mr Hong – the leader, Jeroge, Sung and He Jin. Me and He Jin were the last on the team. We reached Camp 2 – I was so happy to think that our partners came first and maybe they already boiled some watter for the team, but it was completely the opposite.