(By Raheel Adnan) Arnold Coster, Grace McDonald, Mark Quinn and Jon Kedrowski were hoping for late success on GII but the dangerous conditions on the mountain forced them to retreat. It’s reported that the team wasn’t able to anchor safety ropes, due to melting ice and snow. "Melting snow and ice means it's becoming too dangerous to climb" and they made the unanimous decision to turn back. They were the last team to leave the mountain, this year.
Czech Climbers on GI
The four members’ Czech team was divided into two groups. As reported earlier, Marek Novotny and Tomas Petrecek attempted GI via standard route, while Marek Holecek and Zdenek Hruby were waiting for weather to climb SW Wall via new route. Tomas’ home team shared that Tomas and Marek Novotny reached the summit on July 28th (via Japanese Couloir route) and are back to Base Camp, now.
At the moment, communication with the team is not clear due to problems in Satellite phone. The home-team wrote a while ago, [Machine Translated] “The voice is all but utterly cool! At this point, should go back down Marek Holecek, who made the first ascent (attempt). However, we have no new information.”
The message about new route attempt is not clear, but everything seems to be fine, at this moment.
Climbing Activities in Charakusa Valley
As reported last week, Rafał Sławiński and Ian Welsted made first ascent of K6 West on July 28th. Just when the Canadian duo was at the summit, two British climbers, Andrew Houseman and Jonathan Griffith, reached the Charakusa Valley. They flew to Islamabad on 24th July, aiming to climb Link Sar and/or K6 (west).
“I'll be completely honest that I was losing motivation for it in the last couple of weeks. The terrible terrorist attack on Nanga Parbat base camp put a lot of doubt on the trip and in my head. Luckily we had time to make a sensible rather than rushed decision and it has taken time and a lot of chatting through with family and loved ones as well as friends with a lot of experience of the area for me to get it clear in my head that I still wanted to go”, wrote Andy Houseman before leaving for Pakistan.
Jon and Andy straightaway flew to Skardu from Islamabad and swiftly moved to the Charakusa valley. They reached the Base Camp on July 29th. Apparently, the duo will now concentrate on Link Sar than K6 West, the latter being already climbed by Canadians. Andy says, “K6 West had been one of our objectives but the two lines we had in mind are, on closer inspection just too threatened from seracs this year for either Jon or myself to consider them. The only relatively safe line up the face is the line the Canadians took so we are going to concentrate on getting acclimatized for Link Sar, but you never know things can change in the mountains quite fast.”
Andy further wrote that their plans of acclimatization on Sulu Peak (Approx 6000m) were thwarted by rain and bad weather. They haven’t been able to go above 4900m, so far.
Full Report of Kungyang Chhish East (7400m) First Ascent
Hansjorg Auer has posted a detailed report about the Kunyang Chhish East Expedition on his blog. "Getting progressively slower we traversed towards the highest point and at 12:30pm we couldn´t believe it. We couldn´t climb higher, the summit. We had tears in our eyes as we embraced each other." Read full report here.
Based in Lahore, Pakistan, telecom engineer and mountaineering enthusiast Raheel Adnan is a reporter for ExplorersWeb's mountaineering sections. He shares regular updates on Twitter and runs his own blog at AltitudePakistan posting initiated climbing news from Himalaya and Karakoram.
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Hansjoerg Auer: Kunyang Chhish East (7400m) – First Ascent via the Southwest Face
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