Written report translated from audio report:
This was a very bad day on Mt. Everest. It’s May 8th. Last night gale force winds slammed in into the mountain and 50 tents were removed from the North Col and blown off the mountain. That’s fifty, five-o. I’m sure of course of the accuracy [cuts out]… hurricane force winds included all of the Chinese tents I’m told, some of the other expedition tents, and one of our tents – fortunately just one of our tents. What happened with our tent was with our tents, we had two tents up there. And with one of the tents the wind literally sucked all of the contents out of the tent and left the shell standing, and blew the contents of that tent off the mountain. Unfortunately this included all of the high-altitude mountain gear of our four sherpas including my sherpa. Now they have no sleeping bags, down suits, gloves, socks, nothing for the work that needs to go on up the mountain.
We had a team meeting just now, and in order to salvage the expedition we are all going to be sharing our expedition gear so that the camps can be set up on the mountain and we can go ahead with our expedition. So for example, I’ll be sharing my heavy expedition gear like down suits, my scond sleeping bag, and socks and what-not with the sherpas, and the other climbers will do the same. So we think we have a plan worked out that will work for us. We’re also told that the winds must have been almost like a cyclone because they twisted the ropes to our camp one, the North Col, and twisted them around each other to a point where it almost looked like someone cut the ropes or tried to shear the ropes. So that was the power and force of the wind that came in last night and took everyone somewhat by surprise. I’m afraid that my plans for a double summit may have blown off the mountain along with the Chinese tents because now they have to come up from base camp and completey reorganize their expedition and line fixing. First of all they have to acquire… [radio chatter]… first of all they have to acquire new tents and get back up on the mountain and fix the lines [radio chatter]. So I’m not sure of that, but I still have hope as does mingma that I can salvage my double summit plans, but I’m not going to worry about that now. I’m going to let whatever happens happen, and leave it to the will of god. I’m just glad nobody was injured or killed in this wind storm.
The same occured on the south side of the mountain, the Nepalese side. They had the same problems. Many many tents were lost. The Asian Trekking dining tent, the cook tent, were literally blown away, so they’ll have to replace those. So everybody is scrambling on both sides of the mountain, not just us.
In addition there was a sherpa and two Brazillians who summitted yesterday, and they were coming down when the storm hit and were out of radio contact at the South Col. Fortunately… [radio chatter]… sorry I’m a radio tent here this transmission. But they were eventually contacted making their way down the Lhotse Face and so they’re going to be okay. So the good news is that no one is hurt, no one was killed, and we’ll all reorganize and make this happen. So that’s the report, not good news from the Tibet side, [radio chatter]… that’s the report from the Tibet side. I’ll call a further report once their’s something to report.
Checking out, Bill Burke, north side, Tibet, Mt. Everest.