Wednesday 3rd July 2019
‘Life is short. Go to the mountains and never look back’
Today was an exact repeat of yesterday apart from us leaving later as we were in no hurry to get to Assault Camp 2.
You have to appreciate Assualt Camp 2 sits up the mountain and is literally built on masses of rock.
There is no flat ground…as soon as you hit it it’s a rock field. Basecamp 1 now felt like a 5 star hotel, pure and utter tranquility, with all inclusives thrown in.
There was green grass, it was warm, we had an outside toilet, with a proper white toilet, the composting part didn’t matter we had a toilet!
We had a roof that didn’t leak and we were actually able to step outside our door and put two feet fully flat on the ground.
When we visited Assualt Camp 2 yesterday we found our outside toilet demolished by the winds, so our outside toilet was now the boulder field for potentially four whole days and nights! In freezing temperatures….well I ain’t getting into it but I gather you can guess!
This is the demolished toilet
The walk up was once again long and tiring but I felt slightly better than yesterdays hike, I’m using this term loosely ( read: today I was knackered, yesterday I was totally knackered).
Andy was feeling under the weather today as soon as he woke. He had stomach cramps and felt really lathargic. It was not a good time to feel unwell. For him it was a long hard day. By the time he hit Assualt Camp 2 he had no energy and looked rather unwell.
This could have been due to a number of reasons including altitude sickness.
Something rather amazing, interesting, weird and scary happened to us as we were almost at Assualt Camp 2.
So I got this rather weird feeling on my forehead, mostly at my hairline. I thought it was my hair coming loose…it was a weird feeling, nothing sore, more of a tingling sensation so I tried to swipe it away.
It kept happening, I kept swiping. Then Andy said to me what’s that noise can you hear it…then the next thing he started jumping about swiping his head…it was pretty funny to watch until we realised we were in the middle of an electrical storm. I kid you not. We threw of our bags, threw away our hiking poles, ice axes and stuck ourselves beside a massive boulder.
We waited for a bit and decided to just run for it…well that’s a lie because at this stage I couldnt actually run as I was knackered…so we baby stepped our way to camp in the middle of an electrical storm!
Once in camp, well our over crowded portocabin on the boulder feild with Mt Elbrus in full glory we all just fell into bed…lay there and talked.
We had lunch on the mountain at around 6pm…yip tell me about it then dinner at 9pm!!
For lunch we had a lovely soup and some nice bread and for dinner we had rice and diced chicken, with bread (bread gets served with everything) and some chocolate to up our sugar levels.
If I’m being honest I am really pleased with the quality of meals we have had on this trip considering where we are.
Anna our cook is only 23, and can conjure up all of this in limited space with limited materials.
Me and Anna
She also has had to do the climb from Basecamp 1 to Assault Camp 2 to our lovely mountain cabin (it’s totally not) and stays with us…we become one big happy family I suppose.
I was mostly surprised with how hot this cabin kept during the night.
I had worn leggings and trousers along with a base layer, a fleece, a sleeping bag liner and sleeping bag and I was roasting. It was warmer in this than in ‘luxury’ at Basecamp 1.
We spent the evening packing gear for a hike we were going to be taking tomorrow to a place called Lenz Rock. This would help us to walk in crampons in pretty deep snow…by the time we got to bed it was late, well after 11.30pm and tomorrow we were up at 6am.
I also meant to say we had the most amazing sunset up here on the mountain tonight. Mother Nature once again amazing me…in this kind of environment though I must admit it’s just extra special!