Manaslu: Moro Back Down — For a Pair Of Crampons?!

The crazy, unpredictable Manaslu climb had a new wrinkle today, when Simone Moro generously gave Iñaki Alvarez his crampons, forcing Moro to return to Base Camp for a spare pair.
The story goes like this: Taking advantage of a gorgeous sunny morning today, all the climbers went up toward what would be Camp 3. Alex Txikon, Iñaki Alvarez, and the Sherpas set off from Camp 2 while Moro himself started from Camp 1, hoping to catch up with the others during the day. They met at around 6,500m, whereupon Moro discovered that Iñaki Alvarez had lost a crampon on his way up.
Alvarez had already been on the mountain for three nights, “so sending him down is not fair,” Moro said, who gave Alvarez his crampons and hustled back to Base Camp for another pair.

While crampons are needed amid the crevasses, snowshoes are just right in the fresh snow lower down. Photo: Phelipe Eizaguirre

Back in Base Camp, Moro posted a video, shot with Alvarez at 6,500m earlier in the day, explaining the odd event.
This unscheduled detour means that the Italian has lost two days’ worth of climbing stamina. If he wants to summit on Sunday with the rest of the team, he will have to leave Base Camp tomorrow, climb back up to wherever his partners set their Camp 4, then start again with the group the following night toward the top.
Txikon and the rest of the team are at Camp 3 at 6,550m, according to his tracker. Simone Moro earlier reached this point, their highest so far, and cached rope and equipment here.

The highest point reached so far on Manaslu, in yellow. Previously, a huge bergschrund (“rimaya” in Spanish) forced the climbers to pioneer a new route. Graph: Ana Azpilicueta/Alex Txikon