11th October – Manaslu Base Camp

Right now Mal and Ben are slowly making their way to Camp 4 at 7,400 metres in readiness for their push to the summit tomorrow morning 12th October. The sherpas went up yesterday to pitch the tent and set up camp.

The winds have died down a little but unfortunately not enough for Mal to consider flying from below the summit. So he will leave his skis and wing behind and is currently looking at waiting at Camp 3 till the 13th to try and fly then when the winds are forecast to drop again.

Tonight Mal, Ben, Siddhi Mama and Phemba Rinji will be huddled in their tent at camp 4 eating and drinking as much as they can and trying to stay warm. Mal and Ben will be resting on oxygen and they will start their climb at around 5am hoping to reach the summit by 9am.

The forecast is for clear skis and moderate winds and a full moon tonight.

In the meantime base camp is getting pretty quiet with just 4 expeditions left, all of whom are going for the summit tonight or tomorrow.

Wishing them all the best for a successful summit and more importantly a safe return to BC.

11th October – Manaslu Base Camp

Right now Mal and Ben are slowly making their way to Camp 4 at 7,400 metres in readiness for their push to the summit tomorrow morning 12th October. The sherpas went up yesterday to pitch the tent and set up camp.

The winds have died down a little but unfortunately not enough for Mal to consider flying from below the summit. So he will leave his skis and wing behind and is currently looking at waiting at Camp 3 till the 13th to try and fly then when the winds are forecast to drop again.

Tonight Mal, Ben, Siddhi Mama and Phemba Rinji will be huddled in their tent at camp 4 eating and drinking as much as they can and trying to stay warm. Mal and Ben will be resting on oxygen and they will start their climb at around 5am hoping to reach the summit by 9am.

The forecast is for clear skis and moderate winds and a full moon tonight.

In the meantime base camp is getting pretty quiet with just 4 expeditions left, all of whom are going for the summit tonight or tomorrow.

Wishing them all the best for a successful summit and more importantly a safe return to BC.

Sophie at Base Camp

It's been a very very busy few weeks for the Speedfly8000 Project, with work and expedition commitments it's been hard to keep up with everything that has been going on!

 

Sparc Hillery Grant

Speedfly8000 has been selected as 1 of 8 NZ expeditions to receive a SPARC grant!  Awesome!

 

TV 3

TV 3 came down a few days ago for an interview about speedflying / the Speedfly8000 mission and a littel about SPARC

Check out the interview

 

Team Changes

Dugald Peters has had to pull out of the 8000m expedition as work and personal time commitments make it seem unlikely that he'll be able to be on the mission 100%.  Dugald will however be trying to tie in with the Speedfly team on future NZ training missions as time permits

 

Zac Morris has joined the Expedition  – which is fantastic!  Zac is a long term friend of Mal and is one of the people instrumental in getting Mal so involved in Paragliding – it's great to have the shoe on the other foot right now and to be getting Zac more involved in the awesome art of Speedflying/Riding.  Zac is an accomplished mountaineer and has been on a number of expeditions overseas in the past as well as having spent time at altitude above 6200m

Check out Zacs Profile

 

 

Significant Missions

 

Aspiring

A few weeks ago Mal made a successful flight from just below the summit of Mt Aspiring – he went in and climbed the mountain solo but was lucky enough to have a few friends on top (who had climbed the south face) and were able to take some incredible images.

 

Speedfly Boogie

Right now there are 15 – 20 speedflying pilots based out of Wanaka using the local terrain near our fantastic town and over in Queenstown

It's very exciting to announce that the Speedfly8000 Project has been 1 of 8 expeditions selected to receive the Bi-Annual Hillary Sparc Grant.  

Kiwis attempt world firsts with Hillary Expedition Grants

SPARC Press Release 13th December
New Zealand expedition will attempt to be the first in the world to sea kayak the rough waters along the Borchgrevink Coast in Antarctica’s Ross Sea.

The Adventure Philosophy team of Mark Jones, Marcus Waters and Graham Charles will spend about six weeks dragging and paddling their sea kayaks 800kms along the coastline from Ross Island to Cape Adare.

The Furthest South expedition team is one of eight groups awarded Hillary Expeditions Grants by SPARC to help them carry out world-first and world-class adventures in the outdoors.

Another expedition will attempt to make the first speedflying descent off an 8000 metre peak in Tibet. Mal Haskins and Dugald Peters will attempt to ski tour and climb Shishapangma, before making a speedflying descent off the mountain.

Other expeditions include paddling a waka ama from Dunedin to Gisborne, kayaking remote rivers in Papua New Guinea, further exploration of New Zealand’s first 1000m deep cave, and first attempts climbing new routes and mountains both in New Zealand and overseas.

The grants range from $10,000 to $20,000 out of a total $100,000 fund. SPARC allocates Hillary Expedition Grants every two years.

SPARC Chief Executive Peter Miskimmin, who sat on the selection panel, said the adventures planned by the expedition teams were truly awe-inspiring.

"All New Zealanders are fascinated, and feel proud and inspired by Sir Edmund Hillary’s feats. These grants honour that history,’’ Miskimmin said.

"The people on these expeditions will need to be physically and mentally tough. They’ll need to plan well, yet be ready to deal with the unexpected. They are the high-performance athletes of outdoor recreation and I hope that, like Hillary, these adventurers go on to create their own inspiring stories for New Zealanders,’’ Miskimmin said.

"They will put New Zealand on the map, and I wish them well with the challenges ahead.’’

SPARC introduced the Hillary Expedition Grants scheme in 2002. Objectives of the initiative include encouraging inspirational adventures, inspiring others to challenge themselves in the great outdoors, and reinforcing that New Zealand is a nation of great adventurers and achievers.

The expeditions involve extreme adventures and world-class challenges in the outdoors. They include activities such as tramping, mountaineering, rock climbing, cross-country skiing, white-water and sea kayaking, mountain biking, and sailing.

Previous expeditions have included crossing the Greenland ice cap, big wall climbing in Pakistan, making first ascents including of a previously unclimbed tower in the Aisen Province, Chile, and new routes on peaks in Antarctica.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just a very quick update on the last mission we did.

A very short and intense 3 day trip up to the head of the Tasman Glacier has paid off with some very kewl summits and flights from various mountains and cols.  Probably the highlight of the trip was Dugald's successful ascent of Eli De Beaumont – which he climbed solo (without a rope, not without climbing partners) and on bullet proof sastrugi (storm ice).  Flying wise the team flew from the summit of Hochstetter Dome, the shoulder of Eli De Beamount, the side of Mt Annan, numerous flights down the beside the Tasman Saddle Hut and very epic day skinning, climbing and flying from high above the Darwin Glacier just below the summit of Mt Hamilton.

Conditions meant that we had to abandon our planned attempt on the Minarets as the lower ridge was basically just ice – that's New Zealand though – you need to be flexible.

Enjoy the images and short teaser trailer – more to come soon.

 

     

I have just been lucky enough to find and image of the face that we intend to fly as well as showing me the general landing area we wish to use.  This image is taken looking from the NE in the vicinity of the proposed landing area – the standard route ascends from the col on the right hand side of the picture.

Our launch site will be from the main summit over the top of the hanging seracs on the upper face.

I've got goosebumps …..

 

 

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