Bruce is back at base camp after a pretty strenuous acclimation climb. They made it through the ice fall, which Bruce described as "pretty scary," and spent one night at camp one (20, 015 ft.). The next day they went on to camp two (21,500 ft) and spent two nights there. Then on to camp three (23, 621) for one night before heading back down to base camp.
The next time they head up the mountain will be with the intent to summit, and as of right now it's looking like the weather window for that is at least a week out. Bruce is glad for the chance to relax and regroup. He has had a lingering cough from the cold he had early on, and while he did great and felt very strong getting to camps one and two, he struggled a little bit the day they went to camp three. The camp doctor at base camp has given him some antibiotics, and he has several days now to rest, so we're hoping it doesn't prohibit him from performing well when it comes time for the summit push.
Apparently six or seven of the original climbers have quit and gone home, a couple of them because they simply could not face going through the ice fall. Russell (their guide) has divided them up into two groups -- the faster climbers and the slower climbers. Bruce was placed into the faster group but wanted to remain tentmates with a friend who is in the slower group -- so basically he's traveling with the slower group, but he's the fastest guy in that group : )
I've tried very hard not to put my opinions or thoughts into this blog -- my intent is purely to keep everyone informed of Bruce's progress. However, I want everyone to know how much it means to us both that you are keeping him in your thoughts and wishing him well. This is a hard thing he's doing -- physically, mentally, emotionally -- and while he made the choice to do it (and I made the choice to support him) that doesn't make it any less hard. So thanks for your positive thoughts in his direction, and if you could just keep them coming for a couple more weeks . . .