K2: It’s All Over For Carlos Garranzo

A stricken Carlos Garranzo in K2 Base Camp. Photo: Carlos Garranzo

After a long night of vomiting, and now with a kidney ailment, Carlos Garranzo has given up on K2 and will be evacuated from Base Camp asap. “He is someone who’s always there, and with whom I’d embark on any project, no matter how crazy,” said a disappointed Sergi Mingote. At least, the deposit that Mingote and JP Mohr left at Camp 2 remains intact, so they themselves have the gear to continue the expedition.

The on-again, off-again wind has put a crimp into climbers’ immediate plans. Winds are blowing harder than expected today, so Tamara Lunger and Alex Gavan delayed leaving for Camp 1 until tomorrow.

Atanas Skatov. Photo: Atanas Skatov

Bulgaria’s Atanas Skatov, another victim of intestinal problems, has recovered after five days on antibiotics. He will head for Camp 1 tomorrow on his second rotation.

Despite the wind, Seven Summit Treks’ Sherpas and Nirmal Purja’s group will still try to fix the route to Camp 4, according to Mingma G. On their way, they will check on the state of the gear left by Mingma’s team at their Camp 2 at 7,000m. That cache is essential for the all-Sherpa team to continue upward.

Magdalena Gorzkowska is hesitant about moving up. “The weather has improved, ascents are now possible, but not yet to the summit,” she wrote. Pondering the pros and cons of joining the current round of acclimatizations, she reasons that three days this week will feature good weather, but not three days in a row. “One would be merely surviving up there,” she said. “Going up only makes sense if you want to…sleep above 7,000m.” Conservatively, she has opted instead to give herself more time in Base Camp.

Meanwhile, the ever-positive Tamara Lunger writes on Instagram: “I‘m so happy here, despite my cough that exhausts me — I’ve started taking antibiotics — and the nosebleeds, and the cold and wind! In the morning when I step out of my frost-filled sleeping bag, I am grateful for life, the silence, the energy, the wind that represents life, and all the beauty that surrounds me.”

About the Author

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides

Senior journalist, published author and communication consultant. Specialized on high-altitude mountaineering, with an interest for everything around the mountains: from economics to geopolitics. After five years exploring distant professional ranges, I returned to ExWeb BC in 2018. Feeling right at home since then!

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6 Comments on "K2: It’s All Over For Carlos Garranzo"

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Don Paul

I think it costs about $15,000 for a helicopter evac from there. They already had some negotiations with the PAF when Waldemar Kowalewski was flown out. It’s a conflict zone with India and I doubt anyone else can fly there. Carlos doesn’t look like he’s ready for a five day walk back to the jeep trail.


Yes, all helicopter rescue missions in Pakistan are done by Pakistan’s Army Aviation HA Squadron. The price $15,000 is not that crazy high. Why? First of all from Skardu(the closest base) to K2 BC is 180km one way plus they always fly two helicopters for safety reason so it all generates the costs. Just wondering what is the price of search&rescue policy for winter climbing on K2…


its border with china ,not with india


from Atanas Skatov tracker looks like that he climbed today from Japanese Camp 1 to Camp 1 and is staying there for night. Or did he climbed down to BC?


Knowing nothing about such things, when one team lays ropes and camps etc do the other teams use them. Do the different teams share the effort between them.

Not a climber myself but reading and following climbers for years. So from what i read, they use eachothers ropes for sure. They even discuss who is fixing the lines to the camps and perhaps even the summit. Most teams have a number of meters of rope and this is not Always enough for the entire route. Until now, The Sadparas and Snorri fixed lines to camp one and Mingma G to camp 2 and together with Nims’ team to camp 3. These are 3 different teams. As i understand SST and Nims’ team want to fix lines to camp… Read more »