Summited September 27th 2021
Manaslu - this expedition tested me from the get go.
Once arriving at Manaslu Basecamp I decided to have a shower. Now this is just not a good idea. Reaching a new altitude you should take every precaution possible to make sure you acclimatize as smoothly and swiftly as possible! But the following night I woke up at around 2am , my lungs were filled with liquid. I couldn't breathe. Even when I sat up the water would trickle down my lungs and another coughing fit would erupt. My guide ran into the tent and told me instantly that I had to make my way down to Samagaun, the village around 1000m below basecamp. I really thought this was it, over.
Eventually, after being piggy backed the whole way down I stayed in the village, having an interesting visit to the local doctor who seemed just as clueless as I was, and miraculously recovered after 5 days. I trotted back up to basecamp having missed one of the acclimatization rotations with the team, but my moral was still high and I was ready to climb. Originally my plan was to climb without supplemental oxygen however after having HAPE this was not a safe idea, and although annoying, I couldn't let it put me down.
The climb from basecamp to camp 3 was actually more challenging than I thought it would be, purely from hearing the rumours of how "easy" Manaslu is, I was expecting a fairly flat push. The vertical icy funnels were certainly far from "easy".
Summit push was interesting.
Myself and my climbing partner Gelje Sherpa left at around 4am from camp 4, almost 3 hours after the rest of the teams as we thought we would catch up with them higher up! We were very wrong. In fact we over took every single climber that morning and were first on the summit. But it turned out that wasn't the true summit. This is another story and one for another day.. This summit is still considered acceptable, however from 2022 will not be. The summit push, with oxygen, was not very challenging and so maybe there is a plan to go back without o2 and reach the true summit ;)