Breaking News on K2: Body Found Above Camp 4

A body has been found above Camp 4 on K2’s Abruzzi Spur route, Akhbar Syed of Lela Peak Expedition reports from Base Camp.

The body was found roughly 400m above Camp 4 by the Madison Mountaineering Sherpa team, it has a black and yellow suit, Syed said. Both John Snorri and Juan Pablo Mohr were wearing those colors when they were last seen, heading up from Camp 3 towards K2’s summit on February 5.

Garrett Madison and his clients are following their sherpa team up. They are expected to reach Camp 3 today. In a previous interview with ExplorersWeb, Madison said that if his team happened to find any trace of the missing climbers, he would immediately inform the liaison officer in Base Camp and wait for further instructions.

Juan Pablo Mohr of Chile last winter on K2. Photo: Juan Mohr

Muhammad Ali Sadpara also went missing on February 5. His son, Sajid Sadpara, is currently on the mountain, hoping to find his remains. Climbing with Elia Saikaly and Pasang Kaji, Sajid should be on his way to Camp 4 today. Before departing from Base Camp, the young Pakistani climber shared some thoughts with ExplorersWeb:

“I am totally different from last winter: I came here that time to set a world record on winter K2, then the only unclimbed 8000er, with my father and John (Snorri). Now I am here in their search and I am climbing with lots of emotional feelings but also responsibilities. I must be careful since I am also thinking a lot about the future…I am climbing physically, but also internally.”

Sajid Sadpara is currently heading for Camp 4 on K2. Photo: Elia Saikaly

Coincidentally, a small group of Juan Pablo Mohr’s relatives and friends reached Base Camp last weekend, together with Mohr’s climbing mate Tamara Lunger. They conducted a ceremony at the Gilkey Memorial near Base Camp. Finding the bodies of the missing climbers might at least bring some peace to those connected with last winter’s tragic events.

K2 overloaded with snow

Yesterday, legendary climber Rick Allen was killed by an avalanche while attempting a new route. In light of this latest tragedy, Carlos Garranzo and Oswald Rodrigo Pereira have decided to stay on at Base Camp despite aborting their climb. They are ready to help if there are any further emergencies on the mountain.

Rick Allen’s body has now been recovered and brought to Base Camp. Following the family’s wishes, he will be buried at the foot of K2, as he would have wanted.

Left to right: Sheny (Atanas Skatov’s fiancee), Federico Scheuch (Juan Mohr’s cousin), Tamara Lunger, Oswald Rodrigo Pereira and Carlos Garranzo. Photo: Alpinismo y Montaña

The potential for more accidents should not be discounted. Conditions are dangerous; the mountain is overloaded with snow. Mirza Ali of Karakorum Expeditions has announced that he is cancelling his team’s expedition to K2 due to “dangerous conditions and lack of coordination between teams.”

Coordination and the will to work together are precisely what climbers will need on the final summit push. A lack of coordination could have disastrous consequences, as we have recently seen on Broad Peak and, some months ago, during the winter attempt on K2.