Adrian Ballinger Skis Makalu

Adrian Ballinger, together with Alpenglow Sherpas Dorji Sonam and Pasang Sona, have just become the first to summit Makalu this season. They topped out between 8:30 and 9 am.

“We climbed to the summit from where the fixed ropes ended at the French Coulor,” Ballinger just texted ExplorersWeb. “We summited and…I skied Makalu!”

Ballinger had tried to ski Makalu twice before.

Adrian Ballinger on Makalu some days ago. Photo: Alpenglow Expeditions


Speed record?

Following closely behind Ballinger’s team, Nico Miranda and Karl Egloff summited at 2 pm. They were aiming for the FKT (fastest known time) on Makalu and had sped all the way from Advanced Base Camp — which they left at 9 pm — to the summit. Confirmation of whether or not theirs is indeed the fastest time will come later.

The two Ecuadorians are still on their way down. Ballinger is back in BC. He will share more details after some rest.

Nico Miranda and Karl Egloff of Ecuador during a recent acclimatization trip up Makalu. Photo: Nico Miranda

More summits today

Battogtokh Altangerel from Mongolia, assisted by Pemlakpa Sherpa (8K Expeditions), and Patrick Murphy of the U.S. with Kami Sherpa, summited at 10:50 am, Pioneer Adventure reports.

Battogtokh Altangerel (left) and Pemlakpa Sherpa both summited Makalu today. Photo: 8K Expeditions

More teams on the way up

Seven Summit Treks climbers headed to Makalu’s Camp 3 today on their own summit push. The tracker of Kosovo climber Uta Ibrahini located her at 7,389m this afternoon Nepal time. That is the approximate altitude of Camp 3. (Check our Climbers Guide to Makalu.)

According to Mexico’s Viridiana Alvarez, they are advancing at their planned one camp a day: C3 today, C4 tomorrow, and the summit on Wednesday.

Uta Ibrahini’s tracker locates her at C3 on Makalu. InReach’s tracking on Ibraihi’s SM

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides graduated university in journalism and specializes in high-altitude mountaineering and expedition news. She has been writing about climbing and mountaineering, adventure and outdoor sports for 20+ years.

Prior to that, Angela Benavides spent time at/worked at a number of local and international media. She is also experienced in outdoor-sport consultancy for sponsoring corporations, press manager and communication executive, and a published author.