By now you know that a massive earthquake hit Nepal around noon on April 25th. Mt. Everest was hit hard, and according to the news, parts of Base Camp and the Khumbu Ice Fall are destroyed. This is Kathy, Pat's wife, checking in. I am writing this for Pat, to share all the news I know at this point about Pat. He called me yesterday to let me know he was leaving Base Camp with a team (I'm assuming Sam & Alex are with him) for what he thought might be a 10-day trek up to Camps 1, 2 and 3, after which they'd come back down to Base Camp and then prepare to summit. They must have left before the earthquake, which is good news because they got through the Ice Fall before the earthquake hit. Tweets from Camp 1 indicate that the climbers definitely felt the earthquake up there, and heard what was called ear shattering booms as an avalanche and rocks were released above and into Base Camp. They may not have a camp to return to. It also sounds like Dan Mazur, their expedition leader from Summit Climb is with them. This is good news because Pat has always talked about Dan as a level-headed guy who remains calm throughout the storm. He was that person last year during the infamous avalanche, and I'm sure he's that person now.
Sam's mother and I have been in contact and she let me know that Sam tweeted that they were shaken but safe. She also said the directors were meeting at Camp 1 to determine if they were going to go up to Camp 2 or try going back down. Twitter feeds say the same (follow #Everest if you're following climbers on the mountain). I'm posting this info on Facebook, but wanted to share it here since most of you following him are not connected with me on FB.
I'm counting on the fact that he was planning on being gone for 10 days, that he has enough food and equipment, and with his team, they'll all be safe. Word on the mountain is that the Indian Army is sending in helicopters to Base Camp, and medics are there trying to help the injured. No word on how those above the Ice Fall are going to get down. When I find out, I'll post here.
Please send prayers, good vibes, positive thoughts--whatever you have -- to Nepal and Mt. Everest. They need to know they are not alone and we are pushing and pulling for them.
With gratitude for your tremendous support of Pat's climb,
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