Nancy Hansen - Training for Everest
Editor's note: ACC Ambassador Nancy Hansen will be attempting Mt. Everest via the Norton Couloir this spring. You wouldn't know it from Nancy's humble writing style, but this is a pretty big deal — the Norton Couloir, on Everest's North Face, has only been climbed twice and she'll be climbing in a team of two with no supplemental oxygen. Wish her luck in the comments at the bottom.
The Adventure Continues
The adventure of getting ready to attempt Mt. Everest this spring has entered Part 3. Part 1 was deciding whether or not to go after receiving an invitation from German alpinist Ralf Dujmovits last November. Part 2 was raising the money and getting gear sponsors (thanks everyone!!!) Part 3 is training. I have been bike riding and ski touring in Germany and Switzerland for the past two weeks. Ralf and I just returned from a 4-day ski mountaineering adventure in the Bern Alps.
First, we drove the crazy German autobahn where cars and trucks are driving between 80 kph and 250+ kph simultaneously. Then we got on a train that went from Interlaken to Grindelwald in Switzerland. The next train was supposed to take us to the base of the north face of the Eiger, but it was cancelled because of high winds. Ralf then announced that we were going to take the longest cable car in the Alps (7 km!) and traverse on our skis to try and get to the upper train station. The cable car took us through a massive ski area which contains dozens of houses scattered amongst the runs. We traversed and took a couple of chairlifts to reach the upper train station. This station is right at the base of the 1,800m high north face of the Eiger, in the alpine without a road in sight. Despite the alpine setting, there is a big hotel, restaurant, chairlifts, downhill skiers and… a train that tunnels up inside the Eiger. We got off part way to look out the windows onto the north face, then continued up through the Mönch and Jungfrau. We walked through a dark tunnel to a door which opened onto a glacier at over 3,400m. I feel like I'm on another planet!
Many companies and individuals have sponsored Nancy's Everest trip, and she is extremely grateful!
Plus dozens of friends and strangers!