From Stu in the USA Office
September 23, 2009
Chris has left an audio dispatch about the summit day and the plan to return to Delhi and in it has described an earthquake that took place on their summit day during the descnet. Chris describes the entire summit ridge shaking and serac cleaving off from the summit while traversing the steep ice face!
We have confirmed that there was indeed a 6.1 magnitude earthquake on that very day in Bhutan and a 4.8 magnitude aftershock was felt in Uttaranchal where Satopanth lies. In researching the epicenter and BC locations is seems that our team was climbing less than 40km from the epicenter, which explains the very exciting time they had on the mountain and that they must have really been experiencing the full import of the quake the way a mountain of jello would if you bump into the table!
google earth image - E is the epicenter and B is base camp!
i am sure the members will have more to say when they return!
The US Geological Survey reports that the Bhutan earthquake took place in with an epicenter around 125 kilometers north of Gauhati and 180 kilometers east of Bhutan’s capital, Thimphu. Apparently the earthquake shook Bhutan and India’s northeastern Assam state. As well the quake was felt as far as Bangladesh and Lhasa, Tibet. It will be interesting to see if any of the teams on Cho Oyu or Shishapangma felt anything!
here are the details of the aftershock
Magnitude 4.8 on Monday September 21,2009 at 09:43:50 UTC / 03:13:50 PM at
Location 30.873°N, 79.050°E
Depth 43.6 km (27.1 miles)
Region UTTARANCHAL, INDIA
Distances 115 km (70 miles) ENE ofDehra Dun, Uttaranchal,India
180 km (115 miles) E of Simla, Himachal Pradesh, India
190 km (115 miles) NNW of Haldwani, Uttaranchal, India
305 km (190 miles) NE of NEW DELHI, Delhi, India
Field Touring Alpine Audio Dispatches
They will be heading out in the morning and should be in Gangotri on the 25th.
more news and loads of images still to come!