Most/all 8,000m expeditions require waiting for the right weather window when we can climb as safely as possible into the “death zone” above 26,250′. At this phase of the expedition it is a mental grind and a test of one’s patience as one’s body continues to deteriorate while living on a glacier at 18,500′, eating the same foods day-after-day in limited portions, and the physical weight-loss mounts to 20 lbs and increases with each passing day.
Having been through this before helps, but the grind is on. Here’s a post I wrote from Everest base camp in mid-May 2012, which gives you an idea of what it’s like being here at this phase of the expedition:
You made our day by your phone call. Your mother not only loved your flowers (what a surprise and very thoughtful) but really loved hearing your voice. You are gift to us, we have always been proud of you and pray for your safe and successful return. Love Dad
Thanks, Pop. I look forward to celebrating in Jackson over the 4th of July.