In another change of plans, I offered to go back to Plan A and stick around base camp to help get all the communications equipment and electronics charging set up. Of course, that meant giving up my Island Peak climb. But that's okay because that wasn't the really the reason I'm here and I'm trilled to spend a week at base camp helping about and watching the climbers go thru their paces. I can't think of a more amazing place to hang out.
Garrett and I got to work on finishing up the comms tent that Joe put together so quickly. That guy really knows what he is doing. The main thing we were working on is trying to get a cellular booster working so that we might get a 3G signal from Gorak Shep. No luck. We will try again tomorrow when a different booster is scheduled to arrive. In the meanwhile we set up a nice station to allow the climbers to charge the plethora of devices that more and more accompany them: Blackberries, iPads, iPods, Kindles, laptops, ... Clearly I'm not the only Nerd in Nepal.
The next thing you know we are ...wait for it... eating again. Jenny, our base camp cook, created some wonderful soup and excellent quesadillas. I thought that her Mom should know that she is feeding us very well and everyone is quite enjoying the food. Plus she is a joy to be around.
After lunch all of the climbers and guides headed down to the HRA (Himalayan Rescue Association) camp to check it out. I choose to hang at our camp, tidy a few things up, move into my own tent, rest, and watch the snow begin to fall. The first true rest day so far. It felt good and I even got to try out the shower tent. Ah!
The rest of the week should be pretty similar. I'm going to try to get in some side hiking, like up to the base camp to Pumori for a view, while the climbing team begins their practice on the ice and the ladders and ultimately starts their first rotation up the mountain through the Khumbu Ice Fall to Camp I and Camp II.
Well, gotta go because they have put out some snacks now while we wait for more food. I hear steak is on the menu.