(This article was sent to the editor through the kindness of Servicio General de Information de Montana, Barcelona.)


Members : J. I. Lorente Zugaza (Leader and doctor), A. Bidarte, L. Abalde Alzuart, A. Alonzo Diez, J. Cortaz; Larrea, L. I. Domingo y Uriarte, J. C. Fernandez de Torre, R. Gallardo Senosiain, R. Kirch Ugarte, F. Lusarre Grumeta, L. M. Saenz de Olazagoitia, F. Uriarte Camera A. A. Vallejo Rosen, J. Villar Gurruchaga, F. Larruquert Aguirre (camera-man) and A. Lerma Harrero (camera man).

IT was 3 March by the time we got our expedition stores equipment flown to Lukla and our acclimatization could commence. We halted at Thyangboche and at Pheriche to duct our acclimatization camps—these lasted for three we during which all the members climbed easy summits or points ranging up to 5400 m.

On 25 March we established our Base Camp at 5380 m. Lha Tensing, our Sirdar,, had promised his wife that he would go past the Khumbu icefall and that he would direct She activity from the Base. He had been to the summit already the Italians, and we respected his wishes and appointed ano Sirdar for the higher camps.

Opening the icefall route commenced on 27 March and eight days before Camp 1 could be established in the western Cwm at 6100 m. We took the precaution of stopping all activity in the icefall by 11 a.m. every day. The route was fixed 1500 m. of rope and aluminium bridges totalling 60 m. Some 100 wooden planks were later used during the course of the expedition to readjust routes and cross crevasses which had widen While we were provisioning Camp 1 we also simultane explored the route to Camp 2 at 6440 m. and which we into the Advance Base Camp—we made this camp as comfortable as possible. The route between Camp 2 and Camp 3 is the between any Everest camps. We set up Camp 3 (6950 13 April but due to the proximity of the avalanches which past,, the Sherpas avoided sleeping in it, prefering to carry from Camp 2 to Camp 4 (7450 m.) on the Lhotse wall. The weather which had been excellent uptill now, changed on our arrival in camp 4 on 22 April, and stopped all activity on the Lhotse face we, however, used this opportunity for fully supply¬ing 2 and 3.

On 4 May we established Camp 5 on the South Col. The weather had been a cause of worry—the A.I.R. broadcasts of special weather bulletins indicated constant wind speeds between 100 and 160 k. p.h. The Head Lama of Thyangboche monastery also predicted this year (of the wooden tiger) as dry and windy predictably—true, since we believe that it was the first Everest expedition which arrived at its Base Camp site without treading on snow.

Everything was now ready—all camps equipped and on 12 May under rather poor conditions Camp 6 was erected at a height of 8530 m. on the south-east ridge. The next day the summit team waited from 3 a.m. to 10 a.m. for the violent wind to subside—instead it got worse and mist and snow was added to the misery. The best thing to do was to retreat to the South Col which they did without oxyze n so as to leave the maximum supply in Camp 6.

All was not lost; we had enough strength to send two more 2 man ropes—the two ropes left the lower camps a day apart and joined forces at the South Col—one of the members' oxygen equipment jammed and he reached the Col thoroughly exhausted his place was taken by the strongest available Sherpa. They waited at the south Col for four days before realizing that the monsoon had hit the mountain—very reluctantly the attempt was abonded.


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