Cho Oyu and Beyond ...

Cho Oyu climb for a cause is an awareness and fund-raising campaign aimed to help provide much needed education to our often neglected indigenous children in the remote parts of the country. The climb objective is to set a new altitude record, an attempt of the 6th highest mt & one of the peaks in the death zone. This event intends to bridge the education gap, and hope we provide our indigenous children a better future -- safe and away from a possible 'death zone'.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Going Green

WWF-Powerswitch and Greenpeace are asking for help in their campaign.
Check this out.

Monday, December 26, 2005


I just received today a cash donation of 10,000php! =)

Thank you very much to Ms. Marion T. for her generous contribution to Climb for a Cause 2005. Mabuhay ka!

I'll be formally concluding this project by end-Jan, but of course we'll still accept donations even after that.

Happy New Year to all!

Conrad Anker will visit Manila this January

(message from The North Face)
We would like to announce the upcoming visit of The North Face
athlete Conrad Anker in the Philippines on January 24, 2006 at
Rockwell, Makati. Conrad will be presenting a slide show about his
expeditions including the story of his discovery on the body of
George Mallory at Mt. Everest.

Conrad will also be having a book signing session for his book "The
Lost Explorer - Finding Mallory on Mount Everest" which will be
exclusively sold at The North Face store starting January for 650.00

The final venue is still yet to be announced. However, if the
venue will be limited to a certain number of audience we would like
to extend this early invitation to the members of the outdoor
community. If you are interested to join please do register thru
email at or fax us at 2446578. (First Come, First
Serve, Please indicate Full Name, Affiliation and Contact Detail) We
shall also be accepting book reservations on which you can pay and
claim at TNF store on January, as there is a limited quantity
available also.

Conrad Anker
"The Lost Explorer" presentation and book signing
Powerplant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City
January 24, 2006
3:00 - 6:00 PM

PS. Conrad Anker is the cover page of December 2005 Outside
Magazine issue on 25 outdoor action hero. You may want to get a
copy of that also.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Pasko na!! =) Posted by Picasa

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Where are they now?

Our climb teams come and go, they are formed and disbanded, but we always reconnect.
Sometimes, former teammates regroup for another adventure, some become climbing partners and friends. Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became best buddies, and so are other climbers.
And so we try to stay in touch to keep the intangible aspects of the team. Besides, there's a lot to learn and experience when we walk across other cultures.

So, where are my former team mates now?
pake ko, hahaha.


Magnus' response after seeing my Cho Oyu photo album.. Magnus is the Swede, who summit-ed Aconcagua with me.
"Thank you very much for sharing the pics. My stomach almost turned upside
down, I want to be there right now. Can't wait. Cho Oyu is still in my plans for 2007. I want to go to Denali 2006 but I think I will get problem with the money. Just found a job in England but everything is so expensive so it's difficult to save anything here.
stay in touch.

Cho Oyu 2005 team: Mike (South Africa), Dirk (Germany), Pete (Australia)

Mike's first report from his hometown (3wks after the climb). He's the 3rd S.African to hv climbed Cho Oyu. He's now traveling in Thailand with his wife.
"Once again,congratulation to each of you on yr successful summit-its, sometimes hard to comprehend how the whole tedious process suddenly accelerated into a frantic push and before we knew it,it was all behind us!

The frostbite in my fingers is slowly improving but the big toe of my L foot and 3 toes of my R foot are still completely frozen- I've been for another medical opinion and the prognosis is good.
Keep well.

Dirk's reply after I asked him w/c 8000m peak he plans to visit next. He is the strongest member of our team, and he's going for more difficult mountains. He is an ice climber and a climb instructor in d Alps.

"Nice to hear from you. I am not sure which one I am going for (Dhaulagiri or Lhotse). We will see, because it´s a question of money and of course if I can get vacation or not. But I really want.
Let me know when you are in Khatmandu. I will be there.
See you Dirk"
(Note: Lhotse, 4th highest, is the twin-brother-peak of Everest, they share the same south route until Camp3, but it's all-hell to Lhotse peak from there on).

Pete after giving his (post-climb) speech to 700 people. He climbed Cho Oyu for a Cause, supporting 'Beyond Blue' foundation - it's an awareness campaign on depression illness now common in Australia. He's the 20th Australian to hv climbed Cho Oyu.

"G'day mate!! Great to hear from you. Ok, I will get the One shot DVD to you. Hey mate, I gave that speech last night and you got quite a few mentions, particularly your feat at being the first ever in the Philippines to climb above 8000 and summit. Everyone was pretty blown away.
Talk soon,
His girlfriend booked a Hawaii trip for the 2 of them next summer, conflicting with his floating plan to climb Everest. Hawaii vs Everest.. ummm he's a surfer-dude so i guess it's easy to decide :)
(Note: 'One Shot' is the name we gave to our expedition team, since we have the lazy attitude of just going up (one shot) without too much up-&-down acclimatization). We finished ahead vs other teams. It's also the favorite expression of our Sirdar-Sherpa; applicable to climbing, to drinking liquor, etc.)


Fenton (Irish) of Elbrus Expedition team, after hearing the good news of my Cho Oyu climb. We were in Aconcagua the same season, but his route proved to be more challenging due to relentless storms (his team aborted). He summit-ed Elbrus, but got stuck w/ his 7000m peak goal (Acon).

Well done! Great news. We are off to Aconcagua again in Jan with Andy that was on Elbrus with us. hopefully the mountain will be kind to us. If that works ok then Mc Kinley in May.
What was the top like on Aconcagua was the last section difficult? Any info you can give us will be a help

Too bad though that I've lost contact with my other, long-ago expedition group mates ;(

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Need greeting cards for Christmas? Buy cards from Cartwheel, and help the IP community prosper. Check out Carthweel website on how to order online. You can also do away with the more expensive gift card-tags, use Cartwheel cards instead.Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Interview Tidbits

Recent post-Cho Oyu article: SPORTS DIGEST nov05 issue
- I found it amusing, the writer samut-sari'd the news articles and made a 'new' write-up (w/o interview 'to ha). But it occupied 1 whole page for my pix, and 1 whole page for the article, so I guess I shd be grateful for the exposure(?).

Coming up:
-Asian Spirit inflight magz, probably to help the passengers feel high, while they're flying high =)

- Planet Phils are not selling their publication here.
Some Q's are interesting so I'll post some of them below:

Hi Sir,

Here's some questions I'd like to ask for our feature
article about you and your accomplishments. Thanks for
taking the time.

How would you describe your overall feelings on
scaling Mt. Cho Oyu? Was it any different from scaling
Mt. Aconcagua, Mt. Kilimajaro and Mt. Elbrus?

"It was humbling. 8000m peaks like Cho Oyu is of a different level, I felt like Aconcagua (my 2nd most difficult) is now a child's peak that I can run up and down. I got sick during the climb, my teammates got all sorts of problems (frostbite, being delirious and hyphoxic, etc...) - so we know how tough the mountain is...
I also felt lucky, w/ 10% probability (based on summit-vs-attempt statistics), it seemed hard to believe that I made it on top, and made it fast (shorter time). The weather was perfect, a big critical factor. It could be a different story if we're bombarded w/ very strong winds and heavy snowfall."

Do you consider it your most significant
achievement thus far?

"In the area of sports, yes. This is the first Filipino climb of a mountain above the "Death Zone" layer. Only 14 peaks are above the death zone, and ticking one of it is an achievement for all of us, showing in the international arena-- that we can climb serious mountains. Other nationalities are happy for us, when they heard of the news - while I was still on site. This is a serious feat in the mountaineering realm."

What are thoughts of setting the record for highest
altitude scaled by a Filipino?

"Temporary triumph. It's like openning one new door. Then you'll feel that it's never enough, you'll realize later that there's more to do. More mountains, more adventures, more records. we're way behind vs other countries... We need more athletes, in different adventure sports, be it Big Wall climbing, 500km adventure race, circumnavigation, polar expedition, etc.."

Have you officially decided on whether to scale Mt.
Everest yet?

"Thinking mode, it's of a different scale. But it's been 52 years since it was first climbed, somebody has to try soon, fast. Masyado na tayong delayed. We need to put our mark on that peak, I'll decide maybe by January - ie, if I can convince myself, and if I can get enough fund :)"

What preparations do you feel would you have to
work on?

"Support structure, I can't do this alone unlike the previous mountains. Physically? not much when you're living in low altitude, but of course - need to continue with endurance sports."

You climb "for" certain charities - such as the
indigent patients of PGH and the Cartwheel Foundation.
How does that work? How do they receive funding from
yoru achievements?

"I get donations thru my network, and some strangers. Some just give donations. Others pledged. Ex of pledge is x amount if i reach d peak, or x amount for every 1000ft altitude gained. The climb is anticipated to be a newsmaker because of the '1st' record (or highest record), so it's a tool for campaign for certain things, hoping that strangers and supporters will lend a helping hand to these foundations/beneficiaries."

Are you affiliated or connected with any major
mountaineering groups, like the Philippine Mt. Everest
Team? If not them, why not? Is there a competition?

"I'm only affiliated with UPMountaineers. I have a full-time job so I can't join other aspiring teams. Mountaineering is not a project for me anyway, it's just something I do. It just so happen that I'm doing it 'progressively' hence the recent altitude records. There's no competition, I believe there's a common goal, although my goal is actually broader. ex. 7 summits (it includes Everest, and a lot more), Desert crossing, or even south pole exp."

What would be your message, if any, to Pinoys all
over the world that have come to be familiar and
admire your accomplishments?

" "Take it to the next level!" would be a summary line. Whatever you do, esp if you're into sports, invest time/money/life in breaking whatever boundary we have today. If you're a sailor, try to circumnavigate the ocean, if you're a rock climber - don't just climb montalban, do big walls abroad, if you're a strong adventure racer, don't be contended w/ winning local races, join 500km 10-day races abroad, etc.. If you're not into these, simply help and support! Be one with us. Whatever accomplishment one Filipino makes, will be a shared feat and a morale-boost for all of us."