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We are all in a very melancholy state having learnt of the deaths of two friends on neighbouring Dhaulagiri yesterday in an avalanche. The Spanish team here is particularly upset having been good friends of the victims. The only positive news was that two climbers, one a good friend of mine, with whom I have climbed two other 8000ers, survived. Our thoughts are with them.

Accidents like these can destroy the morale and motivation of other expeditions to continue. It will be a day or so before any decisions are made about our own climb continuing in these difficult snow conditions.

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