Muchu Chhish Finally Summited!

One of the great remaining problems in the Karakoram has finally fallen. A star Czech team has summited Muchu Chhish (7,453m), the highest unclimbed peak in the world. It is in the Batura Muztagh range of northern Pakistan.

The climbers will give a complete report once they return home, but for now, Zdenek Hak has updated ExplorersWeb with great news.

location of muchu chhish on a map


Zdenek Hak, Radoslav Groh, and Jaroslav Bansky took six days to reach the elusive summit.

“We started on July 1 after the acclimatization,” Hak wrote us over WhatsApp. “We climbed via the south ridge to the main ridge, and then we continued westward to the summit. We stood on top on July 5 at 10:20 am and took one more day for the descent. [We] finally re-entered Base Camp on July 6 at 6 pm.”

A climber by a small, pink tent high on Muchu Chhish

Groh at the team’s third camp. Photo: Hak/Bansky


“We climbed some 8-10 hours a day and made four bivouacs,” Hak explained. “The total length of the route from Base Camp was 20km and 3,687 vertical meters. The length from Camp 1 to the top was 14.29km, and altitude gain was 2,300m.”

The team has also forwarded the first images of the climb. They show varied conditions, from sheer rock in the lower sections…

The climber on overhanging rock

Hak on the section between Camp 1 and Camp 2. Photo: Groh/Baskly


To the steep mixed ramps leading to Camp 2…

Climber on a steep snow traverse

Groh traverses steep snow ramps to Camp 2. Photo: Hak/Bansky


To the corniced summit ridge…

the climber on a sharp snow ridge

Hak traverses the summit ridge of Muchu Chhish. Photo: Groh/Bansky


When asked about conditions, Hak admitted they found loads of snow. “Luckily, we had a snow plow: Yaroslav!”

Winning team

Czech climbers have tried to reach the difficult summit three times in the last four years. One of last year’s members was on this year’s successful summit bid: the young Piolet d’Or winner Radoslav Groh. For this 2024 attempt, he enlisted Zdenek Hak, with whom he opened an impressive new route on Cholatse in Nepal last year.

Hak, meanwhile, brought another former partner to complete the threesome: Jaroslav Bansky, with whom Hak bagged the first ascent of the vertiginous Chumbu (6,859m) in 2022. Pavel Korinek, who led the three previous attempts, was not part of the team this time.

A snowy ridge and two summit pinnacles on Muchu Chhish

The summit ridge of Muchu Chhish, with the summit at the upper right. Photo: Czech Muchu Chhish 2024 team

A coveted prize

For years, Muchu Chhish has been the highest unclimbed peak in the world (among those open to expeditions). This made it a coveted reward for many highly skilled teams of exploratory alpinists. It also drew bold soloists such as James Price, who tried to traverse the entire ridge (known as the Batura Wall) in 2022.

On the other hand, its flanks of broken seracs and avalanche-prone gullies led to a summit ridge that felt neverending and which discouraged most climbers and pushed back the few who tried.

Climbers on the snowy summit ridge of Muchu Chhish

Hak and Groh climb the last few meters before the summit of Muchu Chhish. Photo: Jaroslav Bansky


The Czechs previously attempted to reach the summit in 2020, 2022, 2023. Last year, Pavel Korinek, Pavel Bem, Radoslav Groh, and Tomas Petrecek found a way to the ridge. They progressed until bad weather trapped them at 7,200m at the bottom of a final rock pyramid, barely 250m below the top. After running out of supplies and fuel, they had to retreat.

Czech expedition progress marked on a photo of Batura range and Muchu Chhish

The Czech expeditions on Muchu Chhish over the years. In 2023, they reached the base of the final rock pyramid (the red flag). Photo: Muchu Chhish Czech Expedition 2023

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.