Army Everest attempt called off

Apologies if this has already been posted but I didn't find it!

I just saw the latest TV advert announcing the calling off of the summit attempt.

from Army on Everest website

Tuesday 22 May 09:54 BST
The Expedition Team has decided not to make another summit bid. The Expedition Leader, Dave Bunting has sent the following message:

"Due to the altitude of the Hornbein Couloir at 8000m and because the conditions are unlikely to change, the high risk of avalanche will remain. To make the couloir safe, we need the area to avalanche or we have to wait for a considerable change in the conditions.

I have discussed this at length with the Deputy Leader Dave Wilson and Climbing Leader John Doyle.

I have taken the difficult decision not to go for a second attempt. Knowing what I know, I am not prepared to risk any of the lives in my team. As climbers, we accept that there is always an element of risk but our Army training, judgment and decision making mitigate that risk.

In this case I am not prepared to risk the lives of the climbers and my friends by sending them back up into the Hornbein Couloir.

The team remains mentally and physically strong despite this decision and setback.

I would like to thank the Army, our sponsors, friends and everyone across the world who has supported us during our expedition. You have been an inspiration to us. Most of all I would like to thank our families for all their love and support during the last three years and particularly during the last two months during our time on this amazing adventure.

I will send more details back once we have spoken to our families".
for those in the know (and there appears to be several on the Everest the Wrong Way thread) does this mean ENDEX and climb back down the mountain or can they stay at the advanced camp and wait it out a couple of days? I would imagine they wouldn't have supplies to stay there and restore energy level at the same time?
I'.m not in the know, but I reckon they're coming down. The Met Info available to them probably shows it's a no go situation. Better to come down than press on and lose a climber.
The Team Leader has set it all out on their Website

Unfortunately they are pulling the plug - weather conditions and an understandable desire to take every man off the mountain safely.

Well done to them all - an extremely ambitious and bold plan that involved huge amounts of planning, followed by massive commitment, not to mention huge bo**ocks. A difficult call for the Team Leader but I am sure the right one.

They are a credit to us all.
Congrats to the whole team. To do what they did, despite not quite getting to the top is amazing.

Of course this still leaves the West Ridge as unfinished business and maybe in a few years time the soldiers on the other groups that went on the expedition will have a crack at the big one.
Well done to all. An amazing feat to have got as far as they did and a brave (and sensible) decision to pull the plug. I hope I would have been able to make the same decision if had been lucky enough to be in the same position.
Obviously a difficult decision, but seems to have been based on good foundations, from the Army Everest website:

John's team withdrew to report to Dave Bunting. The Expedition Leader drew on his many years of military training to make a crucial decision: he placed the safety of his climbers above the almost overwhelming desire to conquer the mountain.

With the expedition so widely publicised, fantastically well-supported by the public and with the competitive spirit flourishing among the climbers, choosing to end the mission must have been an agonising decision. However, making the right choice at difficult moments is where British Army training excels and, as General Chief of Staff Sir General Mike Jackson GSCB CBE DSO ADC explains, there was always a lot more to the expedition than reaching the summit:

“Risk assessment is at the core of being a leader, and I am glad that, yet again, the leadership of this expedition has made a sensible, balanced decision in exceptionally arduous circumstances. Summiting Everest may have been the most obvious objective of the expedition, but it was by far from the only one: developing the Army’s high-altitude mountaineering experience; imbuing a small team with a unique combination of courage, tenacity, determination and self-sacrifice; and, perhaps most important of all, inspiring the multitude of people from all walks who have followed their exploits, are but some of the other more enduring achievements of this expedition.”

With so much talk on the other thread about summiteers being obsessed with the summit at any cost, it's reassuring to know that our blokes out there right now have the knowledge, experience and confidence to assess the current/developing situation and arrive at sensible decisions, rather than place themselves and other teams on the mountain at risk. The West Ridge will still be there this time next year.
Well done, chaps.

Absolutely stonking achievement to get so far and a true show of quality to call it off rather than risk more life and limb than necessary.

Now get back down, get home, get rested and get back up there!
A shame that the conditions stopped them, and I bet it was a difficult call to stop pressing on. I might even change that to "a courageous call"!

Success is nothing without failure...

Welldone guys, you have done the nation proud. We know you can do it. Best of luck getting down safely

Better of a live donkey than a dead lion, a difficult but good decison to turn back. I've read touching the void, absolutly howling story. Well done guys
A tough decision wisely made, better to turn back and have a go next year than to loose some one for the sake of pushing on regardless!
Well done to the entire team and good luck for next year..
took a lot of bottle but if your going to climb a **** off big mountain these things happens better to fail and retreat in good order. than get killed or reach the summit the "easy" way following fixed ropes most of the way.
Good effort all round, it ain't going anywhere just yet

Everest the right way

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