This year Matthew Gardiner made it higher up than he had in his previous attempt on the mountain. The highest that he reached this year was 7200m at camp 3.
It was a combination of poor weather and illness that prevented him going higher this year. Others made it higher without making the summit.
But it was when he reached base camp on his way back, there was an emergency situation going on. The base camp cook was dangerously ill. The symptoms looked like HAPE( High Altitude Pulmonary Edema). This condition has a high fatality rate.
They gave him oxygen and put him in a gamow bag which all helped give the feeling of being at a lower altitude.
“At first the man’s lips were turning blue but I’ve never seen such a recovery in a person. Without the treatment he was going to die,” said Gardiner.
They had to leave within 15 minutes with the cook. There was a 120km journey that they managed over 3 days to lead the cook to safety. “The man was very grateful and kept thanking us for what we’d done from him and from his children,” Gardiner said.
Gardiner says that he is having second thoughts about going back to K2. However, before he left he was feeling burnt out from work and the trip gave him the break from real life that he needed.