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Txikon’s last Everest summit attempt is on

Alex Txikon on Everest

It is a race against time. Another storm front is approaching Mount Everest. The meteorologists expect the small weather window with relatively favorable conditions in the summit region to remain open only until Wednesday and then close for a longer period of time. Therefore Alex Txikon, who wants to climb Everest in winter without bottled oxygen, has to push now. In two weeks, the meteorological winter will end. On Monday, the 35-year-old Basque and his five-man strong Sherpa team climbed up to Camp 2 at 6,400 meters. Today Txikon and the Sherpas Nuri, Gesman, Temba, Sanu and Pasang Nurbu want to reach the South Col at 7,950 meters. All Sherpas use supplemental oxygen. Three weeks ago, Txikon’s first summit attempt had failed on the South Col. “We hope to reach the summit on Wednesday ,” Alex said.

Date

7. March 2017 | 11:26

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Route via the Khumbu Icefall is prepared

Hard work in the Khumbu Icefall

Once more it is served on Mount Everest. For three days, the Basque Alex Txikon, six Sherpas and two “Icefall Doctors” worked to restore the route via the Khumbu Icefall up to Camp 1 at more than 6,000 meters. 60 percent of the route had to be renewed, because the hard weather conditions of the past two weeks had left their mark in the ice labyrinth, the team of the 35-year-old Spaniard said. “It has been hard days refitting the route,” Alex noted on Facebook. After today’s rest day, Txikon and Co. want to ascend tomorrow to Camp 2 at 6,400 meters.

Time to grind the teeth

Alex Txikon

“I know that every time I go up, my strength is decreasing and therefore the chances of summit too,” Alex wrote in his blog. “But I’m a bit stubborn and I like to climb and fight it. It is time to grind my teeth.”

As reported, Txikon had had to interrupt his winter attempt involuntarily because the Nepalese expedition operator Seven Summit Treks had ordered the entire team back to Kathmandu after the failed first summit attempt. On Saturday, Alex had returned to the Everest Base Camp by helicopter.

Date

1. March 2017 | 12:23

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Txikon back on Mount Everest

Back to Everest by helicopter

“Back to the adventure!”, Alex Txikon wrote on Twitter. After eight days in the Nepali capital Kathmandu, the 35-year-old Basque has flown back to Mount Everest by helicopter. “We are already at the Base Camp at 5,250 meters, with very good sensations,” said Alex. “Despite having lost weight and having worked hardly, I am physically still very strong.” According to Alex’ words, it’s still sunny and windy at the top of the mountain, as it had been since the beginning of the expedition in early January. Already on Sunday, Txikon wants to climb up with his Sherpa team to check their previous route through the Khumbu Icefall up to Camp 1 on 6,050 meters and if necessary to repair it or to relocate the way through the ice labyrinth.

Date

25. February 2017 | 16:27

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Expeditionary arrhythmia

Alex Txikon in Everest Base Camp

Expeditions can also get out of the rhythm. For example, if a long bad weather period thwarts all plans or if unpredictable things happen such as illnesses or injuries. Alex Txikon‘s Everest winter expedition, however, has stuttered for another reason. After the failed first summit attempt, the Nepalese agency Seven Summits Treks, with whom Txikon cooperated, yesterday ordered surprisingly to break immediately the Base Camp and return. This decision was “unilateral”, the team of the 35-year-old Basque said. Alex was quoted as saying, “I do not want to leave Everest.”

Date

16. February 2017 | 19:02

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Txikon abandons first summit attempt on Everest

Alex Txikon

Alex Txikon

The dream of an Everest summit success in the first run has gone. Alex Txikon has abandoned his summit attempt and returned to the base camp. “I assure you that I have not given up,” the 35-year-old Basque wrote on Twitter. On Monday, Alex had climbed along with Norbu Sherpa and Chhepal Sherpa at temperatures of about minus 40 degrees Celsius to the South Col on 7,950 meters. But there such a strong wind was blowing that it was impossible to pitch a tent. “We have decided it was not the time to challenge nature at these heights and conditions, since we are nothing in dealing with it, and we could have suffered frostbite or even worse,” Txikon wrote later from Camp 3, adding that at times, it had become a tougher battle than the summit attack of last winter on Nanga Parbat.

After two nights at above 7,000 meters Txikon turned around. Winter is far from over. Alex Txikon will get even more chances. So time to recover and to try it once again.

Date

14. February 2017 | 18:52

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Only half an hour at Everest South Col

The Lhotse Flank, seen from Camp 2

The Lhotse Flank, seen from Camp 2

Mount Everest shows its teeth. Alex Txikon, Nurbu Sherpa and Chhepal Sherpa stayed only for a short time on the South Col at 7,950 meters. “After reaching Camp 4, the wind hasn’t given a truce and we have just gone down to Camp 3, until the storm subsides,” Alex wrote on Twitter. His team later added that the three climbers had been at the South Col for only half an hour. The wind had blown with about 70 km/h. It was impossible to pitch the tent. Alex, Nurbu and Chhepal wanted to spend another night in Camp 3 at 7,400 meters.

It’s questionable whether the trio will climb up again on Tuesday. The weather forecast predicts squalls also for tomorrow afternoon. The wind is to calm down not before Wednesday morning. So it remains exciting.

Date

13. February 2017 | 17:35

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Everest summit attempt next week?

Alex Txikon during his previous climb to the South Col

Alex Txikon during his previous climb to the South Col

“The die is cast,” says Alex Txikon. “There will be only a single summit attack and we will try to climb as we have done so far.” Today the 35-year-old Basque climbed along with the Sherpas Nurbu and Chhepal from Everest Base Camp at 5,250 meters to Camp 2 at 6,400 meters. The other three Sherpas of Alex’ team, Nuri, Pemba and Phurba, want to follow on Saturday. For five days, Txikon and Co. had sat out the bad weather – with squalls of up to 190 km/h in the summit area – in Base Camp. At first, the climbers want to check whether the equipment which they had deposited in Camp 3 at 7,300 meters and in Camp 4 on the South Col at 7,950 meters has been damaged or even blown away and therefore has to be replaced.

Date

10. February 2017 | 18:35

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Determined to make an Everest summit attempt

Alex Txikon

Alex Txikon

Alex Txikon seems to be euphoric. “I do not feel tired,” writes the 35-year-old Basque, after having descended from Everest South Col at 7,950 meters in one go to Base Camp at about 5,300 meters. “My body signals to me that we will go to the summit the next time. Soon you will have news of the attack.” Before, Alex – along with the Sherpas Norbu, Nuri, Chhepal, Phurba and Pemba – had ascended to Camp 4 for the first time during his winter expedition.

Date

6. February 2017 | 10:05

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Txikon back in Everest Base Camp

Everest Base Camp

Everest Base Camp

Alex Txikon and his Sherpa team have reached the Base camp at the foot of Mount Everest in sufficient time before the beginning of the expected bad weather period. This is shown by his GPS tracker. The 35-year-old Basque was “exhausted but satisfied and very confident to reach the summit,” the Spanish sports newspaper “Marca” reported on Saturday evening. It has not yet been confirmed how high exactly Txikon and Co. have ascended this time.

Date

4. February 2017 | 22:09

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To Everest South Col – if possible

The Lhotse flank

The Lhotse flank

Strange. Since yesterday, Alex Txikon‘s GPS tracker, which is to document his ascent on Mount Everest, has not shown any movement. Lastly, an altitude of more than 6200 meters was displayed. Afterwards nothing. I’ve asked. “Yesterday they [Alex and the Sherpas who accompany him] went up to Camp 2 (6,400 meters), where they have slept,” Gontzal Saenz from the press team of the Basque climber writes to me. According to him, the GPS tracker has not been working correctly and is showing the wrong altitude. “I think they were going to keep climbing up today.” The goal was to prepare the route from Camp 3 at 7,400 meters to Camp 4 on the South Col at 7,950 meters by tomorrow. “The weather forecasts are very bad, with very strong winds, for the next few days,” writes Gontzal. “The plan is to return to the base camp tomorrow [Saturday] and wait there for the weather to improve again.”

Date

3. February 2017 | 17:01

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Txikon en route on Everest

Txikon (with a stray dog) in Base Camp

Txikon (with a stray dog) in Base Camp

Alex Txikon has set off again. At 4.30 a.m. local time, the Basque and his Sherpa team left Everest Base Camp. Their declared destination today: Camp 2 at 6,400 meters. The last entry of his GPS tracker shows a position above Camp 1 in the “Western Cwm” at 6,216 meters. There has as yet been no confirmation that Alex and Co. have reached Camp 2. The 35-year-old wants to scale Mount Everest without bottled oxygen – a feat that before him only Ang Rita Sherpa had succeeded on 22 December 1987, on the very first day of calendrical winter. The Nepalese was then climbing Everest much earlier in the cold season than Txikon now.

Date

2. February 2017 | 16:04

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Alex Txikon’s Everest dream team

Alex Txikon in high camp on Everest

Alex Txikon in high camp on Everest

Danger welds together. When Alex Txikon returned to Base Camp after six exhausting and exciting days on the slopes of Mount Everest, he hugged every Sherpa who had accompanied him. “In this team everyone knows what needs to be done,” the 35-year-old Basque writes in his blog. The appreciation is mutual. In Alex’ words, Norbu Sherpa told him during the descent: “I believe that for more than 20 or 30 years, no westerner has done what you are doing.” Like the six Sherpas, Txikon had carried up loads of more than 30 kilograms through the Khumbu Icefall and further up.

Date

26. January 2017 | 13:07

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Txikon on Everest: Recharging batteries

Alex Txikon along with the Sherpas Nurbu, Nuri and Chepal

Alex Txikon along with the Sherpas Nurbu, Nuri and Chepal

Taking a breath – this is what Alex Txikon wants to do not only figuratively but also literally. After six days on the mountain, the 35-year-old Basque has descended to the Base Camp at the foot of Mount Everest. “We climbed to 7,800 meters,” Alex tweeted after his return to BC, which is located at about 5,350 meters and where the air is much thicker than in the height just below the South Col. “It’s time to rest,” says Txikon. And, perhaps, to re-plan the tactics too, after his companion Carlos Rubio – as reported – had to abandon the expedition because of a lung inflammation.

Date

25. January 2017 | 14:21

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Rescue operation on Everest

Rescue flight for Carlos Rubio

Rescue flight for Carlos Rubio

Alex Txikon has to re-plan. On Sunday his climbing partner on Mount Everest, Carlos Rubio, had to be evacuated by rescue helicopter to Kathmandu due to a lung inflammation. The 28-year-old Spaniard has meanwhile sent a video message from the hospital. His condition is not serious, but he has to recover for a few days at the clinic. “I know he is fine”, Alex Txikon wrote from Camp 3 at 7,400 meters, “but from here we miss him a lot, since he has worked like a champion and I am really proud of him.” Today Txikon and the Sherpas who accompany him want to pitch up Camp 4 at the South Col at almost 8,000 meters, “for all the force he has transmitted to us”, as Alex writes: “In short, this dream would not be possible without you, Carlos.”

Date

23. January 2017 | 11:51

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Txikon reaches Camp 2 on Everest

Alex Txikon (at Camp 1)

Alex Txikon (at Camp 1)

Sunny, but extremely cold. This is what the weather forecast predicts for the next days on Mount Everest. In addition, the wind is to refresh. Temperatures between minus 20 and minus 30 degrees Celsius are expected, Alex Txikon informs. In addition, the wind is to refresh. Nevertheless, the team set off from Base Camp today and reached after seven hours the site of Camp 2 at 6,400 meters. Alex, his Spanish countryman Carlos Rubio and nine Sherpas had previously secured the way through the Khumbu Icefall and pitched up Camp 1 at 6,050 meters, at the entrance of the Western Qwm. It was said, that the team might climb up even to Camp 3 at 7,400 meters within the next days. The climbers are expected back in Base Camp on next Sunday or Monday.

Date

19. January 2017 | 11:28

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