Setting up Advanced Base Camp

Today, Stuart and the MM team trekked to Advanced Base Camp (ABC) to set up and start acclimatizing. Here are some incredible photos of the popcorn field and ABC.

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Madison Mountaineering K2 2016 USA International Team at K2 Base Camp on June 26, 2016.

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Our kitchen assistants Mirza Mohammad (left) and Khadim Hussain (right) are waiting to greet our climbers and guides back to K2 Base Camp with a welcomed cold drink.

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K2 at 7:00 AM June 26, 2016. Our team is doing an acclimatization climb and moving items from Base Camp to Advanced Base Camp (ABC), which is located where the base of right ridge of K2 meets the glacier.

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Four climbers on the Godwin Austin Glacier heading back down to K2 Base Camp on June 26, 2016.

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Our climbing team entering the popcorn section of the ice fall.

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Some climbers navigating the ice fall.

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The climbing team arriving at K2 Advanced Base Camp carrying a load of items (extra sleeping bags, sleeping mats, summit suits, extra clothing, etc) to stay at ABC ready for our first seven day rotation, which is in a couple of days to Camp 1, 2 and 3.

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Follow the leader. The best route through the ice fall has been previously selected and marked a few days ago by the Nepalese Sherpas, to ensure the most direct but safest way through the ice fall. The Sherpas are most concerned to avoid hazards such as avalanches and rock fall from close-by mountain sides, overhanging ice, water, ice and snow hazards, impassable or uncross-able flowing water, steep terrain and just having a route that can be traveled with a heavy pack.

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Our climbing team start to navigate their way through the ice fall of the Godwin Austin Glacier on the way to K2 Advanced Base Camp.

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After the ice fall we climb up rocky moraine slopes towards Advanced Base Camp.

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Some of our climbing team and guides trekking up the glacier to ABC, with K2 in the background.

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Trekking back down the ice fall of the Godwin Austin Glacier from K2 Advanced Base Camp to K2 Base Camp on June 26, 2016.

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Stuart and K2 at 7:00 AM on June 26, 2016

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K2 Advanced Base Camp for 2016 at the base of K2. The Godwin Austin glacier on the left flows down the valley to K2 Base Camp which is out of sight on the right.

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Our climbing team and guides have a rest break about every 60 to 75 minutes, depending on conditions. We hydrate, have a snack and rest our shoulders. K2 is in the background.

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It’s really cold at K2 Base Camp at 16,700 ft at night….. and it’s the middle of summer. Stuart tucked up like a bug in a rug in his – 40c sleeping bag and his two hot water bottles. Stuart has a -60c sleeping bag for sleeping higher up on K2.