Cho Oyu Expedition (8,201m)
We have a high success rate on Cho Oyo. Technically, it is a comparatively safe and easy route which enables climbers with determination, but not necessarily a high degree of technical expertise, to reach an 8,000m summit. The safety precautions and logistical preparations are, of course, the same as for Everest and the standard of equipment is equally high. This is an ideal opportunity to experience the world at 8,000m and above with the least possible danger.
Mountain Experience has run expeditions to Cho Oyo since 1996, most of which have seen clients reach the summit. Cho Oyo is relatively easy to climb with minimal objective danger. It is a great opportunity to experience the surreal world of extreme altitude, to train for an Everest climb or to achieve a first 8,000m peak. Along with Everest, we specialise in this classic route and have a very high success rate. Although the challenge is perhaps less than that of the Everest climb, we ensure the same care and attention in the preparation of Base Camp and Advanced Base Camp, the same detailed safety precautions on the mountain and, of course, the same degree of service from your guides and Sherpas.
Above Advanced Base Camp (5,800m) we use three camps. Camp 1 (6,600m) is at the top of a long scree slope. From here the route is entirely on snow. We follow a gentle rounded ridge until we hit a short but steep ice cliff. We use a fixed rope to negotiate the cliff (normally about 20m) and then continue across a gentle glacier before we start another slightly steeper slope, again equipped with a fixed rope. Camp 2 (7,100m) is on an easy snow slope.
The day to reach Camp 3 (7,400m) is relatively short, about three to four hours, climbing more gentle snow slopes. From here we can reach the summit in five to seven hours and return to Camp 2 for the evening. This final day consists of climbing intermediate snow slopes until we reach a series of rock bands, which we cross by way of their snow ledges. We come out onto a snow slope leading us to the summit ridge and then, what is often mistaken as the summit. The real summit is still about 400m away on almost flat snow. The retreat is then fairly fast but with time to enjoy the spectacular surrounding scenery.