Garrett Madison, the team’s expedition leader, had this update posted to his website last night:
“Yesterday Garrett & Sid, along with four of our climbing Sherpas went up from Camp 1 to work on fixing lines to the summit ridge. This was a slow and important step as we prepare the route for our climbing teams ascent. The route from Camp 1 follows the ridge line to the right, hard climbing but without the objective hazard (icefall, avalanches) that the less steep ‘climbers left’ potential route offers. We accomplished a lot, the lines are now just a few hours from the summit. Today Bill, Sid, and Phurba Rita Sherpa are heading up from Camp 1 to put in a small Camp 2, just below the summit ridge. Our plan is for the climbers here in Camp 1 to wake up and leave around 2 AM, an ‘alpine start’ and to climb up and join the three climbers who are in Camp 2 around 6 AM, then continue together towards the summit. We still have a bit of route setting work ahead, hopefully just a few hours along the summit ridge to the top! The climbing team is ready for this ascent and our group is in good health.”
The way we interpret this timing here in California is this- at 12noon PST today, November 9th, we expect that Garrett, Nick Denise, and Paul will head from Camp 1 to meet up with Bill and Sid at Camp 2 (along with the Sherpas at both Camps). They are expected to reach Camp 2 about 4pm PST and they will all head to the summit with an eta of 6pm-9pm PST.
This is an exciting day and we appreciate all your prayers and best wishes!