Glad you made it back safetly and I am assuming in one piece with all toes and fingers.
I do have to say that I am with Chief on this one. I totally dislike the vibe that is in the various camps on the Big 3.
Thanks CClaude. I had a few cold-related issues they are now resolved.
I understand where you and Chief are coming from and also agree - however, it was kind of cool to live in a community of about 240 climbers and guide plus the support staff/Sherpas: a city of tents at 17,500 ft.
Our base camp was high and close to the ice fall so we were fairly isolated. While climbing, for the most part, we did not have to deal with other climbers because we would leave camp early and get a jump: so it was not bad.
The weather caused the climbing windows shrink or disappear which resulted in the scene of 40 ish climbers/Sherpas going up the Lhotse Face in that picture. The only time the number of climbers was an issue was the actual summit day. We left Camp 4 at 9PM and it took 12 hrs to get to the summit.
So we all made the best of it. Most people were professional as we snaked our way up. I say snaked because the long line of headlamps going up in front of me into the darkness and the line below make it look like a gaint twinkling snake.
Safety: Again everyone worked together. We all had the same goal and this was our only day to reachi it. So passing on the fixed lines, even in the most dangerous places, was done in a safe and cooperative manner: I was very impressed!
I love to be out and by myself, which is how many of you saw me on Baldy, but if you want to see the view from the top of the world you are going to have company.
Also, I cannot do much regular rock climbing the disease has effected one of my feet and it is too painful but I can ice climb and mountain climb - so it is all good!