July 25, 2006 - Preparing for our Summit Day Tomorrow
It seems that I call in these daily dispatches about the same time every day from the barrels. It’s just before 5:00pm on the 25th. Now we are getting ready to have an early dinner and we are going to be turning in into our comfortable beds in the barrels right after 5:00pm, probably 6:00pm tonight after dinner.
I’ve probably mentioned to you, I don’t know if I have or not, about seeing a fellow bring up all of those new blue mattresses by chairlift the other day. We’ve been sleeping on those so far in the barrels for our three nights here and we’ll sleep here again tomorrow night after our climb. Very comfortable new mattresses in the barrels and we are going to turn in early tonight and I’ll tell you why. At 2:00am we are going to get up and have breakfast with Olga and at 3:00am the snowcat is arriving to take the group to Prostokov Rocks and to begin our ascent of Elbrus.
You are probably wondering about the weather. It is still very unstable and I see a lot of evidence of winds up high but it’s definitely heading in the right direction and seems to be improving. We’ve had some clear skies today and enjoyed unrestricted views of the twin summits. When we went out for a hike today Steve and Adam rode snowboards down as they do every day during their acclimatization, and we had nice, clear skies.
We are going to settle down early, we’ve already had a meeting with our four Russian guides. There will be nine Berg Adventures climbers starting tomorrow and there will be five guides, Wally Berg, Vladimir, Alex, Sasha and Caesar. So all together we are going to be a strong team and a determined team. Wish us luck for good weather and I will give you a call as we are getting on the cat tomorrow and tell you how it looks.