Aconcagua 12th January 2012

neil On January - 26 - 2012Comments Off

12th Jan
We had a heavy snow fall last night. I’ve never been in a tent when it snows all night, we’ve been up the Cairngorms and a heavy fall come down during the night but nothing like I thought this one was going to be. We started taking emergency procedures like clearing the snow from around the base of the tent and when we went to bed we made sure that we kept the uppers of the doors open by 10 inches for ventilation. It wouldn’t be the first time for climbers to be suffocated in their tents at night.
Not feeling so good today, I’m struggling to take on board the liquids that I need. We went from camp 1 up to camp 2 this morning with our heavy packs and the lack of fluids really showed on me. I was like Elvis coming back down, I kept falling in the snow. So I made the decision that when we move the last of our gear up to camp 2 I will hire a mountain porter. We still have a lot of our kit at camp 1 as we have a rest day tomorrow. The heavy packs this morning were down to food that we helped ship up the mountain. But the move between 2 and 3 is the big one as we do not come back to this camp 2, we head down the other side of the mountain hence the name Aconcagua 360.
So when we arrived back at camp 1 I just collapsed in my tent and lay there for about two hours not drinking or anything, this made me even worse. It’s very difficult to imagine was it’s like your every day things that you do can be weird, you put your gloves in your bag and a min later you can’t remember if you did it or not, this happens with everything. I’m a very strong minded person and I know if I read this back when I’m home that I’ll be thinking “man up you poof and just drink the fluid” or ” why are you lying in the tent you know you have to drink the fluid or you’ll feel worse”. But you can’t, it’s so difficult to force yourself to do it.
I fully intend to drink through the night so I feel better tomorrow.
L x D x F

Aconcagua – 11th January 2012

neil On January - 26 - 2012Comments Off

11th Jan
We left base camp with our heavy packs for camp 1, this would be the same trip as the day before for me. 900 altitude mtrs with an estimated time of around 5 hours.
It’s all very hard and you can’t comprehend how difficult the altitude makes it. You have to drink between 4.5 -7 ltrs of fluids per day just to feel ok. The problem is what is available to drink, water is to acidic unless boiled and it flushes the body of minerals, black tea eventually ruins the stomach lining and so does the powdered juice. That’s where I am at now every time you drink or eat anything you get an acidic taste rise from the stomach. I tell you it’s the 24 hour dealing with the body that makes it tuff, you even have to drink though the night just to feel ok, if you don’t then the next day is even harder to get anything down your throat. And of course if you drink all day and night then you have to go to the loo all day and night, we have a pee bottle for the night, I know what you are thinking but the other option is get dressed put on your double boots and head out into the snow and because of the amount that you are drinking that could be 4 times.
We made it to camp 1 and I nearly collapsed in front of the tent that our local guides had set up for us, they had set off earlier to set up camp for us.
I really don’t get it the doctors have been all over me and tell me that I am very fit, yet when we get to camp 1 I see men at probably 65 yearrs old and over weight, and ladies going about there business as if we were on the streets of Aberdeen.
Im a broken man and it’s only going to get worse.
I miss Linzie, Darcey and Finn xx

Aconcagua – 10th January 2012

neil On January - 26 - 2012Comments Off

10th Jan
I’m a new man to day, I had to go back and see the doc last night as the symptoms were starting to return. They put my condition down to the fact that I was consuming plain water, you are suppose to drink 5 litres per day and I had been drinking around 4.5. So they made up two litres of fluid, one was with whole oranges sugar salt and water and the other was plain tea but with tons of sugar. I was told to drink both before I went to bed, I only managed half of each but by midnight I could feel the difference and in the morning I was brand new, I nearly slept all night!
I had made my mind up that if it was possible I would take the first pack that need up the mountain up to camp 1, all the rest of the group had went up yesterday with there packs. I had to stay back at base camp cus of my condition. That’s a rubbish situation as we have all kind of got to know each other now and to be left behind makes you feel like you are missing out on the experience.
So Andreos agreed to take me up the 900 mtr climb, that’s a big day for anyone who isn’t acclimatised, but I was determined to get up there. The rest of the group were going off to climb a 700 mtr peak.
We got up in 4 hours and down in 45 mins, I stuck to my rules and drunk 2 ltrs of tea and the orange cocktail and it seemed to work. I had no sore head and felt pretty good the whole trip, I’ve got to say that I was shattered when I got back to base camp.
L x D x F

Location Update

neil On January - 12 - 2012Comments Off

Managed to get a good chat with Neil last night. He is feeling (and sounding) much better. Phew !!!
They have progresssed to the next camp.

See their location at 1900hrs on 11 Jan at the following link
(Just an hour ago)