Safely back in EBC

After the big eartquake last saturday at noon some after shocks occurred at 3pm. Early evening, several teams got so afraid that they decided to leave ABC. In my view a stupid idea as climbing down at night seemed more dangerous. Namgya agreed and we stayed. The next day we climbed up to the North Col to further acclimatise and watch for ourselves what it looked like. Actually, apart from some small avalanches it looked ok – although very challenging. We stayed another night and got back today to EBC. A very long (~20 km, 2000 m down and 1000 m up) trip that took me 6 hr.  The routes were pretty safe although you could see the effects of the quake. This afternoon there was a meeting with the Chinese authorities, sherpas, and expeditions. A very tumultuous meeting with conflicting views. It seems that China wants to close the mountain which would imply the season is over and everyone could go home; they would consider extending the permits to next year. However,  nobody can go home since all roads are blocked and all local airports are closed. Everybody agreed that the sherpas would have priority but that would be in vain without any means of transport. Tomorrow there will be a follow-up meeting. However, even if it’s over it might take quite some time to get materials back from ABC and then out of EBC to the civilised world.