2008 Everest Expedition Nepal  •  29,032'  •  8849m
Expedition Coverage

IMG's 2008 Mt. Everest Expedition Coverage

Led by Mark Tucker & Ang Jangbu Sherpa  •  Directed by Eric Simonson
Meet the Team (lower on this page) »

All Climbers Are Now Safely Off the Mountain

May 28, 2008

I am happy to report that all members and Sherpas made it off the mountain safely. Yahooooooo! Dave, Nicky and Greg Messner, Tucker, Jangbu, and the Sherpas are celebrating tonight at Base Camp!! Tomorrow we have 80 yaks coming to BC to start moving the gear down the valley. Before we can get back our $8000 garbage deposit, we must send burnable garbage to the incinerator in Namche, recyclable bottles and cans to Kathmandu, human waste to Gorak Shep (where it is buried in the soil,) and the oxygen cylinders must be exported to USA. (We must show the airway bill to prove that they were removed from Nepal.) All the gear that needs repair goes back to Kathmandu, and the gear which can be stored goes to the IMG store room in Pangboche.

After all the uncertainty associated with the expedition this year, I am happy to say that it worked out pretty well. With a total of 31 summiters, this is our second best year on Everest. Thanks to all the climbers that made the trip possible, to the families and friends that supported the climbers, and to the IMG staff, both in Nepal and back in Ashford, who have worked so hard for the last 12 months. Time to start thinking about 2009!!!

Before signing off, I want to say that today is a very important day for Nepal — the royalty is officially out, and the country is becoming a republic. Our thoughts and prayers are with the brave men and women of Nepal, who have endured civil war and uncertainty for many years. Congratulations and best wishes to all the people of Nepal and good luck for the future!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Hahn's Team Safe in C2; One More Day of Climbing

May 27, 2008

Dave and Nicky descended all the way to C2, and will come down to BC tomorrow. We now have one more big day left on Everest. Most of the extra gear has already been brought down from the upper camps, but tomorrow morning Pemba Dorje and Phur Temba are going to get an early start from C2, go back to the Col for the last two loads up there, and come all the way down to BC. We are sending 12 more sherpas from BC to bring down everything from C2. With any luck, all climbers and gear will be down to BC by tomorrow evening Nepal time. Then, we can finally celebrate.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Team Summits! A Record 10th Time for Dave Hahn!

May 26, 2008

Dave Hahn called down at 7:26am Nepal time from the summit. Everyone in their team is on top and doing well, and the weather is perfect, with 5mph wind. Congratulations to Dave and Nicky Messner (both from Taos, NM), Sanduk Dorje and Phinjo Dorjee (both from Pangboche). This is Sanduk's 4th Everest summit, Phinjo's 2nd, and Dave's 10th!

We didn't want to jinx Dave by mentioning it earlier, but we can now safely say that he has more Everest summits than any other non-Sherpa, and he is the first non-Sherpa climber to hit double-digits! The team still have a lot of climbing left before we can all breath a sigh of relief, but so far so good. We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Team at the South Summit

May 26, 2008

Dave Hahn called down at 5:30am Nepal time to say that the whole team was at the South Summit, the sun was coming up, and the weather was excellent. They are virtually alone, only a few other climbers today — it sounds like a fantastic morning for climbing Mt. Everest!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Hahn's Team Above the Balcony and on Schedule

May 26, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that Dave, Nicky, Sanduk Dorje and Phinjo Dorje took their rest break at the Balcony on schedule at about 2:30 am (Nepal time) and did their first O2 bottle change there. They are now on their way to the South Summit. The weather is holding and everyone is doing well so far.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Hahn's Summit Team on Their Way

May 26, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports that Dave, Nicky, Sanduk Dorje and Phinjo Dorje left South Col for Summit at 10:40pm (Nepal time.) According to Nima Karma, who is waiting on the Col in support of the climbers, it is still gusty on the Col but no precipitation.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Dave Hahn's Team Preparing for Summit Bid

May 26, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that Dave and Nicky are up at C4 and brewing, warming inner boots, and getting suited up for the climb. They are planning a departure around 11pm (Nepal time.) Dave says that there are only a few other climbers going to the summit tonight Also, that the wind has dropped and the sky is clear. We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Waiting Out Weather at the South Col

May 25, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that Dave and Nicky headed out for a short while, but returned to C4. Apparently they were in the middle of a big damp cloud enveloping the upper mountain and they were getting quite rimed up with ice. After consultations with our weather forecaster back in the USA they decided it was better to wait another day with the hope the conditions will improve. SO, that is the plan, they are taking a rest and will hope to go for the top tomorrow.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Dave Hahn's 5th Summit Team Ready to Climb

May 25, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports that Dave and Nicky made it up to C4 at the South Col in good time. Dave said it is a bit windy now, but they are hoping that the wind will drop later tonight — they plan to leave between 10 and 11pm. We have Sanduk Dorje and Phinjo Dorje climbing with Dave and Nicky, and Nima Karma is staying on the Col in support. The Sherpas brought down extra gear from C3 today, and tomorrow we have 9 sherpas going from C2 to the Col to start bringing gear down from C4 and to provide support for Dave and Nicky if necessary.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Everyone Where They Should Be on the Mountain

May 24, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that everything is going smoothly on Everest. Yesterdays climbers Justin, Jaro, Dean made it down to Camp 2 along with Ryan and Serge. Todays summiters Val, Tim, and Mike are spending the night on the Col and will be coming down in the morning. Dave and Nicky made it up to C3 and are doing well.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climbers Descending Well

May 23, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports at 8:30am Nepal time that the IMG team are all making good time on the descent. Val has now reached the Col, and Tim and Mike are below the Balcony. Justin, Dean, Jaro, Ryan, and Serge have all left the Col and are below the Geneva Spur on their way down the Lhotse Face to C2.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

4th Team Summits!

May 23, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that the IMG team reached the summit at sunrise and have now all started their descent. Congrats to Val and Phunuru, Tim and Phinjo, Mike and Dasona, and Pasang Sherpa. Ryan and Serge turned back from near the South Summit and they are they now back to the Col.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

4th Team Past the Balcony

May 23, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker just got off the radio with the climbers, who report that they are climbing past the Balcony (at about 1 am Nepal time). The weather is good and everyone seems to be moving along OK.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

4th Team on Their Way

May 23, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker just got off the radio with the climbers, who report that Val and Phunuru, Tim and Phinjo, Hamill and Dasona, Ryan and Passang, and Serge and Panuru left the Col at 8:16pm. They left early to get ahead of the bulk of the climbers — there are only a few ahead of them. Weather is good. Remaining in support on South Col are Ang Karma, Datenji and Tshewang Lendu. We'll keep you posted on their progress!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

3rd Team Descends to Col; 4th Team in Position

May 23, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports that Justin, Dean, and Jaroslaw made it back to the Col about noon (Nepal time). Tim, Val, Hamill, Ryan, and Serge made it up from C3 and are also at the Col now. Adam and Kurt are on their way down to C2. Nicky and Dave are taking another rest day at C2. Chip, Vance , Joe, and Rohan will be back to Base Camp soon.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

3rd Team Summits!

May 22, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports that our IMG climbers reached the summit of Mt Everest at 6:55am. Congratulations to Justin (his 2nd summit), Dean, Jaroslaw, Mingma Tenzing (his 4th summit), Tsewang Lendu (his 2nd summit), and Pasang Nuru. The weather is holding and they are starting their descent now.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climbers on the South Summit

May 22, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports on the sat phone that Justin, Dean, Jaroslaw, and the Sherpas have just called down on the radio and they are on the South Summit (about 5:30am Nepal time). The weather is clear and a little breezy. They are all together and will be starting the traverse to the Hillary Step soon.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

3rd Summit Team on Their Way

May 22, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports on the sat phone that Justin, Dean, and Jaroslaw left the Col at 9:18pm (Nepal time.) Climbing with them are Mingma Tenzing, Tshewang Lhendu, and Pasang Nuru. It sounds like there was some snowfall this afternoon, but now the clouds have dropped, and the wind is calm. Sounds like a nice night to go climbing!! We'll keep our fingers crossed and not expect to hear from them until they get up by the Balcony.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climber Positions on the Mountain

May 22, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that Chip, Vance, and Joe with their Sherpas went all the way down to C2 while Adam and Kurt elected to remain at the Col and will come down tomorrow. Justin, Dean, and Jaroslaw are at the Col ready to start their climb this evening. Tim, Ryan and Serge, Val and Hamill are at C3. Rohan went back to C2. Casey, Ari, Bob P, Scott, Bob L and Monty are down at base camp. Dave and Nicky are at C2.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

More Summiters! Other Climbers Moving Up

May 21, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports that Adam and Ang Namgya and Kurt and Kancha Nuru are now on the summit and will be starting down soon. Chip, Vance, Joe, and their sherpas are making good time and are now below the Balcony on the way down.

Justin, Dean, and Jaro are in the Yellow Band on their move up to the Col from C3. Val and Phunuru, Tim and Phinjo, Ryan, Serge, Rohan and Hamill are moving up to C3. Monty, Scott, and Bob are heading for BC from C2. Dave and Nicky are in route to C2 from C1.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climbers from 2nd Team Summit!

May 21, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that Chip with Jamling, Vance with Pemba Dorje and Joe with Mingma Chhiring have reached the summit and are now on their way down. Adam and Ang Namgya and Kurt are a little below the summit still going up.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

2nd Team Just Below the South Summit, 28,500'

May 21, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker called to say that the summit team are all above the Balcony now and making good time. Several of them are getting close to the South Summit.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

2nd Summit Team Climbing; First Team Down to C2

May 21, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker just called to say that the next wave of climbers at the Col have now started up a little after 9pm (Nepal time). We should hear from them again in 5 hours or so when they get to the Balcony. Weather is looking decent.

Also — Casey, Ari, Bob, Dawa, Nima Karma, and Danuru made it all the way down to Camp 2 last evening. Good job!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Summiters Safe in Camp; Others Moving Up

May 20, 2008

Ang Jangbu reports that Casey, Ari, Danuru, and Dawa made good time and are now back to the Col (9:45 am Nepal time). They will take a rest and then decide about maybe continuing down to C2 later today along with Bob P. and Nima Karma.

Also making good time are the IMG climbers moving up to C4 today from C3 — they are already there (10:15 am Nepal time). This will give them plenty of time to rest today before the summit bid tonight. Vance is climbing with Pemba Dorje, Chip with Jamling, Adam climbing with Ang Namgya, Joe climbing with Mingma Chhiring, Kurt with oxygen carriers Kancha Nuru and Gyalzen Dorje and we have Datenji and Ang Karma staying on the Col to support them.

Bob L. and Scott have now made it back down to C2 where Ryan, Rohan, Serge, Monty, Val, Tim, and Mike are waiting. Justin, Dean, and Jaro are making good time moving up to C3. And Dave, Nicky, and Sanduk will be spending the night at C1. So far so good!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

First Climbers Summit!

May 20, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report that at 6:23am (Nepal time) Danuru (his 10th summit), Dawa (his 6th summit), Casey (his 2nd summit), and Ari reached the summit. Congratulations! They are now on their way back down and have now reached the South Summit.

Bob and Nima Karma turned at the South Summit on the way up and are now back to the Col. Vance, Chip, Joe, Adam and Kurt are starting up the Yellow Band right now (climbing from Camp 3 to Camp 4 at the South Col.)

Bob and Scott are heading down to C2. Dave and Nicky are in the ice fall right now on their way up. Justin, Dean, and Jaro are on their way to camp 3. Ryan, Rohan, Serge, Monty, Val and Tim are at C2 resting one more day. Hamill is at C2 and may go to 3 later this morning.

We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

First Team Leave for Their Summit Bid

May 20, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports about 2:45am (Nepal time) that Casey's team is now above the Balcony (about 27,500 feet) and doing well. Danuru has retreived additional rope for the rope fixing team and has now carried this on ahead to help with the fixing the route above the South Summit. Weather is reported to be good.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

First Team on Their Way

May 20, 2008

Casey's team left the South Col for the summit at 9:19 pm (Nepal Time). Sherpas with them are: Danuru, Dawa, and Nima Karma.

—Ang Jangbu Sherpa, IMG Everest Expedition Co-Leader

Upper Mountain Fixed; First Teams Ready

May 20, 2008

Ang Jangbu reports:
Two of the fixing sherpas (from other team) continued and summitted at 4 pm this afternoon. Our guys, Danuru and Dawa as usual led the charge and fixed all the way to lower part of the rocks below South Summit. They are back down on Col and going back up with Casey's team. They will be waking up shortly to get ready. They were talking about 9pm departure.

The team will be: Casey, Bob, Ari, Danuru, Dawa, Nima Karma. We have Datenji, the camp 4 cook, for Casey's team. Scott, Adam, Bob, Chip, Vance, Joe and Kurt are at Camp 3.

IMG Sherpas Assist in Rescue; Climbers in Position

May 19, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports:
Three of our Sherpa are now in the lower icefall helping get some Korean down with some sort of sickness. Dawa and Danuru worked their tails off at the Col — everything is set for a 4 am start to fixing. Val, Monty, Ryan, Rohan, Serge, and Team Merle went to C2 today. Casey, Bob, Ari at C3, tough climb due to wind. Chip, Vance, Scott, Adam, Bob, Joe, Kurt are going to C3 in the morning. Mike, Tim are going BC to C2 in the morning. Team Hahn one more rest day.

Starting to Position for Summit Bids

May 17, 2008

Ang Jangbu reports that Dave and Nicky are back down to BC now, after spending the night at C3 and then climbing a short way above. Also yesterday, 5 sherpas carried to the South Col and now that camp is fully stocked and ready for the summit bids!! Eben and the trekkers had a nice visit to BC, including hiking up to the base of the Icefall yesterday, and today they are headed back down to Lukla, with several of them planning to climb Lobuche Peak on the way.

We have IMG Sherpas Danuru and Dawa heading tomorrow to C2 and on to the South Col the next day as members of the joint expedition Sherpa fixing team doing the rope fixing to the Balcony and above. The plan is to get the rope fixed on the 20th, with the first summit bids on the 21st.

This morning (the 18th in Nepal time) Scott, Adam and Bob Lowry with their personal sherpas and Casey and his team (Bob and Ari) headed up for their summit bids. They all went to C1 with the exception of Scott and Kami who went on to C2. They are scheduled to go for the summit on 21st or 22nd.

IMG climbers Joe, Kurt, Chip, and Vance and their sherpas are planning to head up tomorrow, with Justin, Dean, Jaroslaw, Ryan, Rohan, Serge, Tim, Val, Monty and their sherpas heading up the next day. We'll let you know more as everyone's final timetables becomes clear. So far so good!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Upper Mountain Plans

May 15, 2008

IMG Leader Ang Jangbu reports: Dave and Nicky are up at C3 tonight. They plan to go little higher tomorrow morning before come back down to C2. The Sherpas carried to the Col and C3 as planned yesterday. Eben and trekkers arrived base camp on schedule and they are all doing well. Casey and his team came back from Pheriche. Tim went down the valley with Phinjo for couple nights.

We had a big sirdar meeting at AAI camp this afternoon. We now have 11 sherpas in the fixing team including 2 from us (I am thinking of sending Danuru and Dawa but this might change). We also have 22 bottles of oxygen contribution from other teams and 2200 meters of rope on the Col. Our plan is to send the fixing team on the Col on 19th and fix above on the 20th.

There are several groups shooting for the summit on 21st — includes Kari Kobler's team, Willie's team, Kenton maybe and some other teams. Some of our team members might decide to shoot for the 21st as well. We will have better idea tomorrow. We have 5 sherpas carrying to the Col tomorrow and rest are coming down to BC from Camp 2.

Stocking Upper Camps for Summit Bids

May 14, 2008

IMG Leaders Tucker and Jangbu report that the big build-up at the South Col continues, with 19 Sherpas successfully making the Big Carry today. There is getting to be a good supply of oxygen and gear up there now, with more on the way! Over the next few days we hope to complete the stocking of Camp 3 and Camp 4 in preparation of the summit bids. For tomorrow, we have 14 Sherpas heading back to the Col and 9 going to Camp 3. Hahn and Nicky are now at C2, heading for C3 tomorrow. All the IMG climbers are now back to BC, with the exception of Casey and crew, who will be back tomorrow from their trip down valley. We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climbers Acclimatizing and Watching the Weather

May 13, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that after some snowstorm last night, which made things questionable this past morning, the Sherpas at C2 decided to pull the trigger on the Col carry. They left at 5am from C2 and nine of them climbed to the Col today — we now have 29 cylinders of O2 up there. Chip/Jamling, Vance/Pemba Dorje are back to C2 from their overnight at C3. Justin, Dean, Jaroslaw, Val, and Hamill went to C3 today and are back to C2.

Tomorrow we have 22 sherpas climbing from C2 to the Col. All the team members currently at C2 will be coming back to BC tomorrow. Dave and Nicky are now at C1, going to C2 tomorrow. Casey and crew are still R and R down in Pheriche. Eben and the trekkers are at Gorak Shep.

The forecast from our custom forecaster Michael Fagin ( suggests that we will continue to see some moisture coming up from Bay of Bengal, so there will be intermittent snowfall, but the jet stream is out of the region with no signs of it being over Everest for the next 7 to 10 days.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Sherpas Carrying to Col; Climbers Going Higher

May 11, 2008

IMG Leaders Ang Jangbu and Mark Tucker report: today was a Big Day — the route to the South Col (Camp 4) is now in and IMG sherpas Phunuru, Mingma Tenzing and Nima Karma have already put some loads up there!! If the weather is good we have 8 sherpas carrying to the Col tomorrow: Gyalzen Dorje, Dawa Nuru, Arita, Kancha Nuru, Ang Nima, Phinjo, Panuru and Mingma Chhiring. Tomorrow we have 17 more IMG Sherpas moving up to C2 from BC for a few days of Big Carries to the Col. These guys will each make several round trips to the Col from C2, with the fastest ones able to carry two O2 cylinders from C2 to the Col and return to C2 in 7 hours. Incredible! Some of sherpas may do more — they make a lot of bonus money doing these C4 carries, so this is where the strongest ones really rack up the cash. We will not actually establish Camp 4 until it is time to occupy the camp, since the wind will trash the tents.

Camp 3 is now established at 24,000 feet on the Lhotse Face, and Chip/Jamling and Vance/Pemba Dorje are sleeping there tonight. Scott, Adam and Joe climbed to C3 today and came down to C2. Weather permiting, Justin and crew and maybe Val and Monty are planning to go for C3 in the morning, with Chip and Vance back down to C2. Hamill, Tim, Bob, Ryan and crew are at C2. Suk Bahadur is carrying some gear to C3 for those who are moving to 3 tomorrow.

Other members are at BC. Casey and crew are heading to Pheriche in the morning for a few days rest before summit push. The second EBC trek group is now at Dingboche. IMG guide Eben Reckord is with them and they were able to talk to Base Camp today on the radio. Everything is going well for them and they are planning to go to Lobuche tomorrow and Gorakshep the next day.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Climbers on the Move with Restrictions Lifted

May 9, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports lots of climbers moving up and down on the mountain, now that all restrictions have been lifted. The Army team has now left BC and only the Liaison Officers remain. There are thirteen of the IMG climbers up at Camp 2 tonight, with two at Camp 1. Tomorrow, four of the climbers at C2 will be coming down to BC and the C1 climbers will go up to C2 tomorrow. Also, tomorrow, three more climbers will leave BC and go to C1 and two more will go direct from BC to C2. Higher up, the Sherpas have been busy, with the route to C3 fixed today. Tomorrow work begins on fixing the upper Lhotse Face, with several IMG Sherpas working with an 8 person multi-team crew to get the Yellow Band fixed, with another 8 sherpas slated to fix into the Col the following day. So far so good!!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Live Broadcast of Chinese Summit Attempt

May 7, 2008  •  5pm Pacific Time

If you have cable TV and can get CCTC (the Chinese station), turn it on RIGHT NOW and you will see the Chinese reach the summit with the Torch. It is 5:30 am Nepal time morning of May 8, and the climbers are currently just above the triangular face (above the 3rd step) just below the summit ridge.   See video of the Olympic Torch reaching the summit of Everest on CNN »

And here's a YouTube video of the live CCTV (Chinese TV) coverage of the torch on the summit of Everest »

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Cyclone Misses Everest but Offers Perspective

May 7, 2008

Eric here, with an update on our IMG expedition team. First off, I have to say something about the tropical cyclone Nargis: we were concerned last week that some of this storm in the Bay of Bengal might hit Everest (see the April 29th dispatch.) As I am sure you have heard by now, this storm moved east and made a direct hit on Yangon, Myanmar, and there are now tens of thousands of people killed or missing there. Our hopes and prayers go out to all those people in Myanmar, whose options are so limited by their government. Personally speaking, it really puts a lot of things in perspective for me.

On Everest, IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that the IMG climbers have chosen several different strategies this past week. Many of the non-guided team members have been resting at Base Camp, after their earlier sorties to Camp 2, and are now getting ready to go back to Camp 2 tomorrow for another acclimatization rotation. Others, including the guided teams with Hahn and Grom, moved back up to Camp 2 several days ago, while Campbell's guided team went down to Pheriche for R and R. These climbers are all expected back to BC in the next couple days.

Our Camp 3 sherpas are still waiting for the green light to move up — we have a big strong Sherpa team and we can move fast to establish Camp 3 and Camp 4 once we get the chance, but we remain on "hold" until the Chinese climbers make the summit.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

A Break After the Camp 2 Rotations

April 30, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that most of the IMG climbers have now returned today (Nepal time) to Base Camp after the acclimatization rotation to Camp 2. Justin Merle and his guided team remain at C2 and will be down tomorrow. After that, we are anticipating that Everest will be "shut down" for the next few days while the Chinese make their climb. Our Camp 2 sherpa staff has been permitted to stay at C2 to maintain this camp, but everyone else is supposed to be off the mountain.

Tucker reports that some of the IMG Sherpa team has now been released to make their well deserved run down the valley to their home villages — they will be back in a few days (this is an annual event which they look forward to). Meanwhile, a number of the sherpas have been held back at Base Camp to be ready to start working on the route to Camp 3 as soon as we get the green light.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

All Well at Camp 2 and Promising Weather

April 29, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report that everything is going well on the mountain. Most of the IMG climbers are still up at Camp 2 doing their acclimatization rotation up there. Our custom weather forecaster Michael Fagin in Seattle ( tells us that the tropical cyclone Nargis in the Bay of Bengal is now trending away from Everest (we had been watching that with some concern). This is good news — hopefully, with improving weather, the Chinese will make the summit soon, and everything will revert to normal!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Camp 2 Ready for Climbers

April 25, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report that over the last two days virtually all of the IMG Sherpas have made carries to the 21,000 foot Camp 2, a total of 43 loads of food, fuel, tents, oxygen, fixed rope, and other expedition gear. Tomorrow we will have 28 Sherpas carrying up to C2.

Currently at C2 we have three big kitchen/dining tents for the sherpas and members, as well as many sleeping tents. The first IMG members will be moving to C2 tomorrow, and over the next few days we expect most of the team to be moving up to C2 for acclimatization. So far so good!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Camp 1 Rotation Successful; Camp 2 Getting Set Up

April 22, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report most of the IMG members who went up to Camp 1 for acclimatization overnights have now returned to Base Camp for a couple well deserved days of R and R. Their timing is excellent, since when they are ready to go back up, Camp 2 should be ready to use for the next acclimatization rotation. Today, 25 IMG Sherpas carried to Camp 2 and another big group will go up tomorrow, so the camp will be ready to use soon. We have several big, double-wall "Weatherport" type tents that take quite a lot of work to get set up, but once the Sherpas have them ready to go, they make great kitchen/dining facilites at the cold and windy Camp 2 (about 21,000'). The IMG Gokyo trekkers were visiters to Base Camp the last couple days, and they have now departed, heading for Lobuche. We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

The Climbing Begins

April 20, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report that the IMG team has had several successful days of movement on the mountain. After all the uncertainty of the last weeks, it is great to finally strap on the crampons and climb! IMG sherpas have established Camp 1 (about 19,000 feet above the top of the Icefall) and 14 team members have now moved up to Camp 1 to acclimatize for a few days. IMG sherpas have also been to Camp 2 (21,000 feet) to claim a site there, and we expect work to begin in ernest on this camp in the next couple days.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

The Khumbu Icefall is Open for Business

April 16, 2008

IMG Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu report that the Icefall route is now open. Tomorrow morning 28 IMG sherpas will carry to Camp 1 and Camp 2. The IMG climbers will start up the following morning — the idea being to give the sherpas a chance to get the camps established first. With our big, strong sherpa team, we expect to have Camp 1 and 2 established in only a few days.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Getting Ready for Camps 1 and 2

April 14, 2008

IMG leaders Tucker and Jangbu report that the Icefall doctors were back to work in the Icefall yesterday, but took a rest day today, and hope to finish the route to Camp 1 tomorrow. We now have the green light from the Nepal Army to start building Camps 1 and 2. The last few days have been good practice for the team members to hone their skills with the oxygen systems, icefall techniques, ladder crossings, fixed ropes, use of the stoves, etc. All good stuff to master prior to going up high. So far everything is going fine with the team.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Heli-Pad Housekeeping in Base Camp

April 11, 2008

IMG leaders Tucker and Jangbu report that the team is doing well at Khumbu Base Camp. Yesterday the climbers and Sherpas worked on building the BC helicopter landing pad, in case of the need for emergency evacuation arises. Since the glacier is constantly moving, this needs to be rebuilt each year. Landing a helicopter at 17,000 feet is always tricky, and having a good, flat heli pad, up on top of a small hill (not too close to the camp!) can make all the difference. The Lobuche Peak team has now descended down to Lobuche. The Icefall route is almost completed to Camp 1 now.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Whole Team in Base Camp

April 9, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that all is well at Base Camp, and that the entire team is now there. The members had their puja today and after that, the EBC Trekkers started back down the valley, planning on taking four days to hike to Lukla. The Icefall sherpas have been making good progress, and we expect the Icefall route to be finished in the next few days. The team members are spending the next couple days making preparations to begin climbing. This is a great chance for everyone to do some further acclimatization, before starting to climb the Icefall on the first C1/C2 acclimatization rotations. We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Views from Kala Patar; First Team in BC

April 7, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that the EBC Trekkers, led by IMG guide Eben Reckord, ascended Kala Patar for nice early morning Everest views, before joining the climbers for the final trek into Base Camp. Later in the day, the Sherpas had their puja, the traditional beginning of the expedition. The members will have a second puja in two days, when everyone in the later group arrives. So far everything is going well and by all reports the IMG Base Camp looks great, after several weeks of work by the Sherpas to get it well established.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Gorak Shep — Last Stop Before Base Camp

April 6, 2008

IMG Leader Mark Tucker reports that the first group has reached Gorak Shep (about 17,000') and the other teams are now in Lobuche. Gorak Shep is not a village, just a couple of small lodges on the edge of the Khumbu Glacier moraine, below the popular viewpoint of Kala Patar (about 1000' higher). A short distance above Gorak Shep the route drops down onto glacier, and ascends through the rocks and that cover the ice to the site of Base Camp. So far everything is going well, and the climbers and trekkers are all on schedule, with the first team planning to go to Base Camp tomorrow.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Team Acclimating in Lobuche

April 4, 2008

After two nights in Deboche (about 12,000'), two nights in Dingboche (about 14,000'), the group has now arrived in Lobuche (about 16,000') where they will also take two nights. These are important camps, with good opportunity for taking some nice acclimatization hikes during the free days. We want everyone to get to Base Camp feeling good!

Yesterday the last 40 loads were flown from Kathmandu to Syangboche by helicopter and are now on the way to Base Camp by yaks. The HRA medical clinic is now established at Base Camp and the Icefall Doctors (sherpas) have now set the first 9 ladders on the route to Camp 1. This is good news, it sounds like the route work in the Icefall is now moving forward.

We'll keep you posted!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Permits Received

March 31, 2008

Good news from Kathamndu. Yesterday afternoon we had our briefing at the Ministry and received our permits. This morning (Tuesday) Dave Hahn and Justin Merle flew to Lukla by the fixed wing airplane, then to Syangboche by helicopter, where they were met by Ang Pasang. This afternoon they will do the briefing at the SPCC office in Namche and will pay for our Icefall permits and garbage deposits. Tomorrow they will hike to Dingboche where they will catch up with the expedition team. The team spent last night in Deboche and today they are visiting Tengboche for an acclimatization day. So, tomorrow they will all be together. So far it sounds like everything is going well with the group and aside from a few sniffles, everyone seems to be acclimatizing normally.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Progress on Permits Looks Good

March 30, 2008

I am now back in Kathmandu after trekking up to Namche with the climbers and trekkers. All team members have now reached Namche and everyone is doing fine. The first group is getting ready to head to Tengboche today, after a couple days of acclimatization in Namche and exploring the nearby villages of Khunde and Khumjung.

It was great to see our sirdar (Sherpa leader) Ang Pasang and some of his Sherpa team again. Right now we have about 20 Sherpas up at Base Camp working on building the camp. The SPCC (Icefall doctors) are now at BC too may be starting work on the Icefall as early as today. I flew back on the helicopter that we had chartered to fly in our fourth load of supplies to Syangboche. Ang Pasang was arranging for this load of food, duffle bags, equipment and oxygen to be loaded on yaks for the trip to BC. We also sent some additional gear in yesterday by the Lukla flights and it will be portered to BC. After moving over 30,000 pounds of gear we now have only about 2500 pounds of remaining gear to move, and this should go in the next day or two.

On the permit front, after all the anxiety of the last few weeks, we now have good news. Our agents in Kathmandu had another meeting yesterday with the Ministry and the Army chief who will supervise the liaison officers, and it sounds like everything is moving forward. The Ministry has now accepted our permit payment this morning and the formal briefing will be this afternoon. IMG guides Dave Hahn and Justin Merle have stayed back for the briefing, and when this is finished, they will immediately fly to Lukla and head on up to join the climbers en route to base camp.

So far so good — we'll keep you posted!!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

Team in Kathmandu and Heading for Lukla

March 25, 2008

I arrived yesterday in Kathmandu and am happy to report that most of the team is now here too. The plan is for the first group to fly to Lukla tomorrow (the 27th) and begin the trek to Base Camp. The guided teams led by Kurt Wedberg, Ryan Campbell, Mike Hamill, and Casey Grom will start a day or two later.

Ang Jangbu reports that the "Icefall Doctors" are now at Base Camp getting ready to start work on the Khumbu Icefall Route. IMG now has ten sherpas at BC working on our camp and all our gear is now moving to BC. We still do not have the permit. Latest news is that the Ministry has forward their recommendation to the Cabinet for final approval, which we hope to finally receive in another couple days. In the meantime, we are full steam ahead to start moving towards the mountain and acclimatizing.

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

The IMG Everest 2008 Expedition Begins

March 21, 2008

I have said before that every year is different when it comes to Everest, and 2008 is shaping up to be no exception! Just when we were celebrating the end of the civil war in Nepal and the prospects of nationwide elections this spring, it seems that world events again conspire to make the Everest season unpredictable. The recent instability in Tibet and the diplomatic pressure that the Chinese have put on Nepal to close the south side of Everest makes us remember that it is not just the weather, avalanches, and ice that we struggle with, but also governments and politics. Knock on wood, it now looks like we will get our Everest permits, with some conditions — we will likely have to come down while the Chinese are summiting with the Olympic Torch from the North side. The exact details will be forthcoming, and we will keep everyone updated on this.

We have now sent three MI-17 helicopter charters to Syangboche and over 22,000 pounds of food, fuel, and supplies has been transported to Pangboche and Gorak Shep, where it awaits deployment to BC. Ang Jangbu Sherpa reports from Kathmandu that the oxygen shipment has arrived and will be repacked for transport by helicopter and yaks to Khumbu Base Camp. Our Sherpa team is ready to go to Base Camp and finish construction as soon as we get the green light from the Ministry.

The IMG team travels to Base Camp in several waves this year, with the main group flying to Lukla on March 27 with the Expedition Leaders Mark Tucker and Ang Jangbu Sherpa. We expect that they will arrive at Base Camp about April 7.

We'll look forward to sharing our 2008 IMG Everest expedition experience with you!

—Eric Simonson, IMG Director

The IMG 2008 Everest Expedition Team

Non-guided Team (with Personal Sherpa)

Tim Warren climbing with:
Phinjo Sherpa

Jim Harter climbing with:
Danuru Sherpa

George Shaw climbing with:
Dawa Danuru Sherpa

Robert Lowry climbing with:
Karma Rita Sherpa

Joe Yannuzzi climbing with:
Mingma Chhiring Sherpa

Valerie Hovland climbing with:
Phunuru Sherpa

Monty Smith climbing with:
Pasang Rinji Sherpa

Vance Cook climbing with:
Pemba Dorjee Sherpa

Ciprian Popoviciu climbing with:
Jamling Bhote Sherpa

Scott Parazynski climbing with:
Kami Sherpa

Adam Janikowski climbing with:
Ang Namgya Sherpa

For more info on IMG's Guiding and Sherpa Team, please visit our Guides page »

Expedition Support Sherpa Team

Ang Pasang (Pangboche)
    Climbing Sirdar
Mingma Dorje (Phortse)
Tshewang Lhendu (Phortse)
Nima Nuru (Pangboche)
Karma Serki (Phortse)
Phur Temba (Phortse)
Dawa Nuru (Thame)
Pasang Nuru (Phortse)
Kancha Nuru (Phortse)
Ang Nima (Khumjung)
Nima Tamang (Pangboche)
Arita (Thame)
Ang Karma (Phortse)
Karma Dorje (Phortse)
Tseten Dorje (Pangboche)
Kancha Nuru (Pangboche)
Phurba Ongel (Pangboche)
Kalden Phura (Pangboche)
Dawa Tenzing (Phortse)
Tsering Wangchu (Khumjung)
Pasang (Thamo)
Nima Ongchu (Phortse)
Mingma Ongel (Phortse)
Nima Karma (Phortse)
Phinjo Dorje (Pangboche)
Ang Tsering (Phortse)
Gyalzen Dorje (Phortse)

Base Camp Kitchen Staff
Kaji, Member head cook
Dhan Sher, Member cook
Ang Tsering, Sherpa cook
Shyam Pun, Member assist
Jor Bahadur, Member assist
Shyam Pun, Sherpa assist
Ngima Sherpa (Solu), Sherpa assist

Camp 2 Cooks
Bale Magar, Cook
Ang Sona (Pangboche), Assist
Pema Sherpa, Assist

Base Camp Trekkers and Lobuche Peak Climbers

Roberta Garrison
Kevin Garrison
Kathryn Swetnam
James Swetnam
Gary Mohr
William Chiu
Marlin Kipp
Ellen Parker
Raymond Kozloski
Benjamin Anderson
Timothy Moore
Keith Cowing
Roger Burleigh
Sara Berghoff