Makalu: Summiters Reach Camp 3 in the Dark

There were more summits on Makalu today, but their descent was agonizingly slow. Nine members of the Imagine Nepal team topped out early enough but only reached Camp 3 after dark because of poor conditions.

The climbers left Camp 3, which lies at 7,450m at the Makalu Col, yesterday before midnight. They summited at 9:10 am. Successful climbers included Sashko Kedev of Macedonia, supported by K2 winter summiter Kili Pemba Sherpa, and Naila Kiani of Pakistan, supported by Phur Galjen. Makalu was Kedev and Kiani’s 10th 8,000’er.

Also in the summit group was Wang Zhong of China, guided by Tamting Sherpa, and Hakon Asvang of Norway, with Sonam Tashi Sherpa. This entire group had originally hoped to climb Shisha Pangma, but when China decided not to open the mountain, they redirected their efforts to Makalu. (Kiani and Kedev had also tried for Shisha Pangma last fall when avalanches took the lives of four people and prompted an early closure.)

Naila Kiani while climbed clipped to a fixed rope and pakistan flag on her sleeve.

Naila Kiani. Photo: Instagram


No-O2 climbers

No-O2 climber Allie Pepper of Australia left Camp 3 today for the summit. Check her progress on her tracker here. Pepper was already acclimatized after climbing Annapurna earlier this spring. Mikel Sherpa is supporting her. There may be someone else on the team, but we are awaiting confirmation.

Stefi Troget of Andorra, on her first acclimatization round to Camp 3, returned to BC today.

Pepper's tracker showing her location on Makalu on a Google maps graphic.

Alli Pepper’s progress on Makalu on May 5, at 10 pm Nepal time. Her location was 7,600m, some 200 meters above Camp 3.


The video below shows a previous year’s arrival at the summit of Makalu, filmed by Jackson Groves.

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.