After delay upon delay due to bad weather over Lukla, my team and I (Emma, Tim and Rosmund) decide to charter a helicopter from Katmandu to a lower village in the Khumba. Reports are 300+ trekkers and climbers stranded at both ends due to the stagnant cloud, meaning that domestic flights are grounded. Today (9th) flights have finally resumed. We, the lucky ones, are now at our base camp at the foot of Ama Dablam (6812m). It's a spectacular mountain- absolutely beautiful. Base camp is at 4600m and we're all feeling great. It's fairly cold- I'm wearing my karrimor down jacket, especially in the evenings. The sun disappears behind the mountains and a chill settles- the clouds fall and the moon rises over Ama Dablams left shoulder.
We've seen shooting stars and the Scorpio constellation (my birth sign) dominated the night sky. The days- we have high pressure so brilliant blue skies and little wind. The sun rises and finally tips over the peaks at about 8am and the air temperature rises rapidly. Last night, the first in my tent at BC, was particularly cold and despite my minus 40 sleeping bag I was kept awake by the night time freeze.
Today we had our Puja and went through kit for the hill. Things will start to move fast from now so I won't have a chance to write again. I'm feeling strong- no coughs, colds or injuries yet and no headaches or altitude related problems so I'm optimistic about going higher. The route looks very cool, and nothing like I've seen before on Everest or Manaslu- so a whole new challenge awaits.
Standing by for now