Journal Entry 5/6/21

We are now in a rotation cycle where we traverse the icefalls and head up to Camp 1 and Camp 2, eventually we will be going to the higher camps and trying to acclimate to the extreme altitudes. The weather will obviously play a factor on when we can go. We are currently at EBC resting and waiting until we are given the go ahead. My lungs continue to be an issue and I am not finding it any easier to acclimatize to the higher altitudes; hopefully, with some rest here at EBC, I will be able to regroup and assess my situation better. 

COVID-19 is beginning to throw a major curveball into this rotation cycle. Over the last few days, it has become obvious that several people throughout EBC have been testing positive. I sent IMG testing kits prior to leaving, which have been getting regular use multiple times a week within our group. Along with regular testing, we have strict lockdown rules and have remained within our bubble that we have created. Unfortunately, Everest is not immune to COVID-19. Clearly, there is a worry that this could unravel everything on Everest over the course of the next couple weeks. Climbing this mountain may be next to impossible if COVID-19 continues to escalate.

I am continuing to realize how out of touch with the world we are while on this mountain. Now that we are back at EBC, we are getting news that COVID-19 case numbers are increasing like crazy in Nepal. Indiaโ€™s numbers have been increasing by 350,000-500,000 each day. With India on their border this is clearly overwhelming to the Nepalese who have limited capacity to manage this. Kathmandu is now on the verge of lockdown. We got word that flights in and out of Nepal will be closing soon and there will be no air transportation for at least another two weeks. I have been in contact with my medical colleagues in Kathmandu and they have confirmed all of this. Furthermore, due to the lack of adequate airway management, high flow oxygen, ventilators, medications, vaccines, etc., this dramatically escalates the problem in Nepal. We’re reaching a crisis point here within the country; the situation is scary and difficult to sort out. It has really made me take a step back and see the bigger picture.

Continued support and prayers for Nepal and the climbers on Everest are much needed!

Talk soon, 

Kris


The summit is what drives us, but the climb itself is what matters. โ€“ Conrad Anker

10 thoughts on “Unfortunately, Everest Is Not Immune

  1. Prayers for you and the team and prayers that Covid does not escalate out of control. Hope your lungs get better…did you happen to bring or do they have at the camps O2 Sat monitors? I admire your passion and determination to climb but take care of yourself….donโ€™t be a statistic…๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™

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  2. Sending lots of prayers your way! This is an amazing experience that Iโ€™m sure will change you forever. Be safe! All I can think of when your name pops in my email list is the sweaty euchre party over in Oak Creek…you were able to stick the cards on your forehead. Thank you for the laughs!

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  3. We have been praying several times a day since we learned of your intentions. Stay safe and healthy above all. No pun intended. You and all your team and others will continue to be in our prayers. It has to be an incredible experience.

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  4. My thoughts and prayers are with you and all of the climbers / trekkers alongside you on this journey and also for the people of India and Nepal and their surrounding neighbors. Hang tough Doc !!

    David E. Majewski
    Professor of Communication and Theatre
    Richard Bland College of William & Mary
    11301 Johnson Road, South Prince George, VA 23805
    dmajewski@rbc.edu | 804-862-6100 ext 6122

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    Notice of Confidentiality:
    This e-mail and any of its attachments may contain Richard Bland College proprietary information, which is privileged, confidential, or subject to copyright belonging to Richard Bland College. This e-mail is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to which it is addressed. If you are not the intended recipient of this e-mail, you are hereby notified that any dissemination, distribution, copying, or action taken in relation to the contents of and attachments to this e-mail is strictly prohibited and may be unlawful. If you have received this e-mail in error, please notify the sender immediately and permanently delete the original and any copy of this e-mail and any printout.

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  5. Kris, reading through your blog has been awesome to see through you this life challenging expedition. I am and will continue to pray for you, your team, and all the climbers on the mountain. keep working on your breathing!

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