Saturday 10th December. By Paul.
We are sitting in a rough shelter, heated by a wood stove that leaks smoke, waiting for the weather to pass. Outside it is snowing, the wind is howling and we have another 800m to ascend before reaching a pass.
Many others left already but we are waiting for a better time as the views at the pass are meant to be awesome. With whiteout conditions, spare time and the sun setting at 10pm, we weren’t going anywhere just yet.
We contemplate lunch as more people get impatient and leave. At times it looks lighter, but then it darkens again and the wind picks up. At 1pm the conditions do ease up and we eat lunch, before heading out at 2pm. We are the last group to leave that day as others decide to spend a second night there.
An hour later we reach the treeline to blizzard conditions. Jodie is blown over by the wind at one stage as we plod towards the pass in knee deep snow. One hour later we are getting closer and the weather is improving, visibility is better although it is still snowing.
Later, and with 20 minutes to the pass, the sub shines abruptly through the clouds. Five minutes later we are bathed in sunshine and surrounded by views. We push on to the pass, sunglasses on.
At the top the wind is howling but it is clear and the views of Glacier Grey are stunning. We get over the pass and ten minutes later the clouds roll in again. Superb timing!