The toast of Namche: UK Girlguiding team breaks unofficial Tether hot air balloon record?
(MountEverest.net) Last Sunday (Sept 9) the Girlguiding UK team succeeded at 0600 local to inflate and display Tether it's new hot air balloon above Syangboche.
"We had hoped to do so at Dingboche and EBC just get some pictures and to see if it was possible with a small balloon," the team wrote to ExWeb last week. "A combination of the appauling weather and the bridge down at Phunki Tenga aborted that, but our girls have done us proud all the same."
Just for fun and science
It was the association's first official basecamp trek and the balloon went along just for for fun and science, "no illusions of flying over the top or anything!"
The voluntary team used a lightweight Ultramagic 56,000cft envelope and duochair hopper bottom end (rather than a basket). Himalaya Expeditions porters carried all the kit up and back, the team reports.
"Certainly a first for the area"
"We think 3858m is an unofficial record for a full display tether of a hot air balloon and it's certainly a first for the area," Mark Warne from the team wrote.
"The girls have won a lot of respect from my fellow pilots worldwide for achieving something technically difficult in challenging conditions. I know very few hardened balloonists who might have tried it and even less who would have put up with the Khumbu weather over the past two weeks."
"The girls were certainly the toast of a very quiet Namche this weekend and all hope to be back to try Island Peak next year."