Good news, even without the cameraman, Karina Oliani made the Summit at about 7.30am on May 17 local time with Pemba Sherpa. They are on their way back to camp 2, where I expect Scott and Mingma are waiting. Wally Berg’s wife rang me at 6pm last night (Ut time) to let me know that Karina was at the Hillary Step – approx one hour from the Summit. So, despite the cold, it seemed she would definitely make it.
I haven’t spoken to Scott since he was at the South Col on the 15th but he said he would not be taking the sat phone. It seems like the team made the good call for Scott and Mingma to descend and leave their oxygen with Karina and Pemba. Although it would seem to have short-staffed Karina’s attempt somewhat, Peak Promotions also had an Indian team summitting the same day. They topped out just ahead of Karina.
I am hoping to have Scott home within the week – just the dodgy icefall to descend. I’m also keeping an eye on AC dispatches: Ralph going for the Lhotse/Everest double and Office manager, Suze Kelly on a “work trip” going for her first 8000 metre peak, Lhotse.