Annapurna III: Ukrainians Safely Down

The Ukrainian team that completed the first climb of Annapurna III’s Southeast Ridge is safely down after a difficult three-day descent. After summiting last Saturday, Viacheslav Polezhaiko, Nikita Balabanov and Mikhail Fomin bivouacked at 6,700m that night, 6,400m on Sunday, and 5,400m last night.

One of the Ukrainians on Annapurna III’s Southeast Ridge on their previous attempt in 2019. Photo: Cherkasy Federation


“All’s well,” texted Fomin. “We have already left BC and we are flying back to Kathmandu. We’re all alive!”

Hopefully, the team will soon share details and photos of the route.

Annapurna III’s Southeast Ridge was one of the most coveted unsolved problems in Nepal’s Himalaya. The Ukrainian team had previously attempted the nearly 3,000m ridge in 2019 but had to turn back at around 6,300m because the snow was too deep and unstable.

Mikhail Fomin with Chhang Dawa Sherpa of Seven Summit Treks. Photo: Dawa Sherpa’s FB