(By Raheel Adnan) It has been a couple of eventful days in Karakoram, with news arriving about a new route on Broad Peak, summit on Gasherbrum II and burial of Polish climbers on Broad Peak and Gasherbrum I.
Iranian New Route Ascent of Broad Peak
The Iranian team has successfully completed the new route on the Southwest Face of Broad Peak they had been working on since 2009. Three climbers (Aidin Bozorgi, Pouya Keivan and Mojtaba Jarahi), who bivouacked at around 8000m on the night of the 15th, reached the summit on Tuesday, July 16th. The new route meets the normal route at C3 and then goes to the right directly to the main summit of Broad Peak (refer to images). The team left C3 on Saturday and had to make three bivouacs at altitudes of 7350m, 7450m and 8000m before reaching the summit (8051m).
But the climb isn’t over yet. From reports, it appears that the climbers haven’t reached the safety of C3 yet. Due to some confusion in the descent path, they had to bivouac for the fifth night on Wednesday at an altitude of 7700m. They will have to climb 100m today to reach the normal descent route to C3. It’s reported that all climbers are in good health without any sign of hypothermia and edema. Two members of the team, Ramin Shojaei and Afshin Saadi are in C3 waiting for the summiteers.
There are also reports of Pakistanis reaching the summit of Broad Peak via the normal route. Precise details about the ascent are not available yet.
First Summit of the Season on GII
While many climbers are currently making summit bids on GII, Lela’s Gasherbrum Expedition team shared the news about the first summit of the season on the mountain, a couple of days ago. As per reports, Argentinian Mariano Galvan bagged the summit on July 14th, reaching the top alone. Galvan will now proceed with GI climb.
More GII Summits
Kobler-Partner GII team leader Suzanne Husser messaged on July 18th, "Yesterday (July 17th) at 12 clock, the Gasherbrum II expedition celebrated the successful summit!" Details of ascent and list of climbers making it to the top are not available at the moment.
AMICAL alpin team led by Thomas Laemmle also made it to the top today (July 18th). As per message from the team, nine climbers [1 guide (Thomas Laemmle), 1 high altitude porter (Ali) and 7 clients] reached the summit. The summit push started just before midnight. By 06:30 in the morning, the team was at around 7550m. At 11:30 local time, they reached 7800m and fixed the route to the summit. The team is currently on the descent.
Burials at Altitude
The Polish Expedition on Broad Peak looking for the bodies of Maciej Berbeka and Tomasz Kowalski has concluded successfully. The body of Tomasz Kowalski, first sighted by AMICAL alpin team, was found at around 7900m and has been buried, away from the route to the summit and sight of climbers. “We carried his body about a hundred feet down. Further transport would have been very difficult. After talking with his parents, it was agreed that we bury him in the most suitable place for the purpose. We found such a place, where no one will bother him. ” told Jacek Berbeka. “These six hours of work there at an altitude of 7900, I think we will remember it for a lifetime or even longer. Never in my life have I been so tired, Jacek (Jawien) too."
They were unable to locate the body of Maciej Berbeka, which fortifies the belief that he fell into a huge crevasse at around 7700m. “.. if Maciej is in the gap that in this situation - I'm sorry, so to speak - there is no better place,” says his brother Jacek. Maciej and Tomasz died above 7700m after the first winter ascent of the peak.
The body of another legendary Polish climber, Artur Hajzer, was also formally buried on GI, yesterday, as per wishes of his family. The task was carried out under the supervision of his climbing partner, Marcin Kaczkan. Artur perished on the mountain after suffering a fatal fall while descending to C2, on July 7th.
Nanga Parbat Summit Bid
The Romanian Nanga Parbat team is currently at around 7300m-7400m on Schell route. One member of the team, Bruno Adamcsek, has aborted the attempt due to health issues and is descending now, while the remain four climbers will move forward depending upon weather conditions. It’s not decided yet whether they will carry out the summit bid directly from this position or will go further up.
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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