Himalaya wrap-up (update): Koreans pushing for Annapurna summit via a new route

Himalaya wrap-up (update): Koreans pushing for Annapurna summit via a new route

Posted: Oct 19, 2011 02:41 pm EDT

(Angela Benavides/Story updated 9:55 pm) The only men left on top of the world: Mr. Park and his two Korean mates are on Annapurna south face, aiming to push for the summit on Friday. Only then will they decide where to descend. (Ed note: the plan could be aborted, check below). There's also news from lower peaks nearby - and the Alps.


They acclimatized on Imja Tse (Island Peak) before setting BC on Annapurna south side on October 9 and going to work at once. Park Young Seok, Dong-Min Shin and Gi-Seok Gang fixed 180 meters of rope the very next day and then the news stopped - until yesterday: "The team has just left BC on a summit push," The North Face Korea crew reported. "Park Young Seok, together with Dong-Min Shin and Gi-Seok Gang, expect to to reach the summit via a new route on Friday, Oct 21."

ExWeb correspondent Kyu Dam-Lee reports that the climbers should reach 7,000/7,300 meters today, 7,700/8,000 meters tomorrow and push for the summit on Friday morning.

"The descending route is not yet decided," TNF noted. "Once at the top, Mr. Park will decide whether to go down via the normal route on the south side, or to head towards the mountain's north side."

The summit team will be supported by Ja-Joon Koo in BC and by Dong-Young Kim and Han-Goo Lee in ABC.

Ed note: Mr Park, 49, climbed all 14, 8000ers, skied to both poles, carved a new route on Everest in 2009 and now attempts a new line between the British and Japanese routes on Annapurna south face.

Story updated 9:55 pm: ExWeb correspondent Kyu Dam-Lee just reported that the Korean Alpine Federation and the Exploring Culture Foundation of Young-Seok Park said the last communication between BC and Park was at 4 pm on October 18, at which point Mr Park said the team was retreating due to bad weather and heavy rock fall. A helicopter has been mobilized in KTM in case of accident.

Nepal 7000ers & 6000ers

The commercial guides are hard at work as well: SummitClimb leaders Arnold Coster and Max Kausch have moved from Cho Oyu and Shisha to Baruntse and Ama Dablam. Adventure Consultants (previously on Cho Oyu) launched expeditions on Ama and Cholatse. Manaslu skier Adrian Ballinger is on Ama Dablam leading for Alpenglow. IMG are on Ama as well. Field Touring, also planning to climb Ama dablam on November, has a team pushing for Lobuche summit tomorrow.

Peak Freaks' "Everest training team" is on Pumori ready to climb after a short break in Gorak Shep today.

In the news - Alps: Jasper & Schaeli on The North Face Trilogy

Robert Jasper, 43, and Roger Schaeli, 33, have free-climbed the North Face Trilogy (Eiger, Matterhorn and Grandes Jorasses). They bagged in one day the first free ascent of the 1000 meter "Sebastien Gay Memorial Route" on Matterhorn October 4.

#Mountaineering #topstory

Mr. Park (in black) briefing his team mates in Annapurna south side BC which was set October 9.
courtesy Park Young.Seok Annapurna fall 2011 expedition
The Korean team paying respect to Annapurna in a Puja before disaster struck.
courtesy Park Young-Seok Annapurna fall 2011 expedition
A fall season favorite: Ama Dablam.
courtesy Adventure Consultants, SOURCE
Park celebrating his last birthday, 49, in Anna BC this fall.
courtesy Park Young-Seok Annapurna fall 2011 expedition
Robert Jasper.
courtesy Robert Jasper, SOURCE