Blog 28 – What comes next? Nepal and Manaslu

We are approaching the big final! Two weeks in Kazakhstan are behind us. We have been busy organizing stuff (preparations for Manaslu, getting Russian Visas for the way back, getting necessary customs documents and of course backing up on OneDrive,), gaining weight (luckily Martin lost his animal hunger he had had since Afghanistan), light workout, and curing some sicknesses. Today, we are flying to Nepal where we will attempt to climb and ski-down Mt. Manaslu (8163 m). We had to change our original plan to reach Nepal via Tibet with our car took after the Nepalese-Chinese border shut down for foreigners after the April’s earthquake in Nepal. Thus, we left our car in Almaty, will pick it up in October and then drive through Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine back home.

Czech Manaslu 2015

On Manaslu we will join forces with other Czech mountaineers. Originally we were a small group of people who wanted to get the climbing permit cheaper. In the end the group has 10 members. We know only some of the guys. We met Tomáš Kučera and Pavel Burda during our last year’s expedition to Pik Komunisma and Pik Korzinevskaja in the Pamir. With Lukáš “Krejčus” Krejčí and Vašek Notovný we met while climbing in the northern Bohemia. The rest of the group we know mainly from dozens of e-mails in the past months. In the base camp we will share a dining tent and hope to sing together at the guitar played by Krejčus. On the mountain, we will be more or less independent units though supporting each other when necessary. Half of us is going with skis. Who would not want to do some glacier skiing in the middle of September, right? We are starting the six-day trek to the base camp on Sept. 3. After acclimatization, we will be waiting for a weather window for the summit attack. If we are lucky, it will come in late September, early October. In addition to our website and Facebook you can follow the expedition on the website and Facebook Czech Manaslu 2015.

This year, there will be probably quite some traffic on Manaslu. The closed borders between China and Nepal burst the bubble of many expeditions. Among them also to Honza “Trava” Trávníček, who had planned to attempt to climb Cho Oyu (8188m). At the last moment they were forced to change their plans and his group is now going to Manaslu instead. Trava, who has already summited four eightthousanders (including K2), is an experienced Himalayan wolf and we will try (of course discreetly) to learn some high altitude tricks from him. Like Trava, we will be using sleeping bags and down clothes from Carinthia – a world leading producer of dawn equipment. A big thank to Carinthia for the support.

Support Nepal with us!

As you may already know, we have launched a small fundraising effort to support Nepal after the quake. To help motivate people to participate, we offer our unique “services and products” – more here. Some of you have already made your donations. Thank you very much and we hope there will be more of you soon! We will be sending the first part of the money at the beginning of the next week.

An important update in this regards is that we have decided to donate the money we raise to the SOS Nepal Project of People in Need organization. The Nepalese mission of People in Need is focused on the Ghurka district – an area where also Manaslu lies. People in Need has extensive experience with humanitarian and development aid around the world. Also in Nepal People in Need has a great team which is a guarantee that the funds we have collected will be used as efficiently as possible. We have been in contact with the management of the mission and have been arranging a field visit to their project. Some pictures and impressions from the field coming soon!

And for those who read the posts till the end, you can also look forward to more blogs from Afghanistan and Tajikistan – their titles say it all – “Sunshine boys stuck in the cloud” and “Honeymoon with Beton Ski Team”.

PS: There has been a number of people helping us with the logistics during the whole trip. Thank you all! The list of names would be long so we would only mention our main “victims” who we recently kept busy sending instructions and requests via Skype. So a big thank to Eva Štouračová, Bára Studená, Vašek Novotný, Robert Kulhánek! We will repay it in beer or other drinks when we come back!

CarinthiaMicrosoftHanibalG3PiepsBoatparkSinging RockDirect AlpineGoal ZeroTravellunch / MX3 AventureEsbitHuskyCK Alpy

001_Pohled ze Sama East Pinnacle

Manaslu, East pinnacle, photo by Pavel Bém


Running session in the mountains above Almaty


Running session in the mountains above Almaty


Fighiting session in the mountains above Almaty


Sunset running


In Almaty, you can find Kozlovna (an original restraurant of the Czech brewery Velkopopovicky kozel). The play Czech pop music and to attract customers in the fierce competion they currently offer a 50% discount on the whole menu. What a bargain!


Agent M: „Maybe it would be a good idea to get a spare key, what you think?”


Godfather K: „No question son!“


Streets of Almaty


Tirol everywhere!


Observatory in the moutnains on the way to the Kolsai lakes


“Have you already have breakfast, guys? Let´s have some steaks!”
Lessons of Kazahk hospitability


Breakfast for four


Gangsters of the steppe


Kolsai lakes


Even in detail photography Lumia 830 performs well!


Martin needed some help to be able to pack his own stuff


Packing at the last moment. As usual.


No Goal Zero, no fun!


“Guess how much overweight we will have?”