New Route Up Flat Top Peak in Northwest India

Young Swiss climbers Matthias Gribi, Nathan Monard, and Hugo Beguin have opened the first route up the vertiginous north face of a peak in northwest India’s Kishtwar National Park. Called “Flat Top,” the peak lies in the Brahmmah-I massif. Its summit is actually the only level place on the sharp 6,000’er.

Location map.

Location of Kishtwar National Park. Google Maps/Times of Kishtwar


A two-year dream

“We had been dreaming of this mountain for two years,” Matthias Gribi wrote. The team managed to get to the area in 2022, but couldn’t get permits for Flat Top. So instead, they climbed the southwest ridge of 6,278m Chomochior.

This year, the team set up their Advanced Base Camp on the glacier during the second half of September. After a first failed attempt because of heavy snowfall, they launched a second attempt on Oct. 2, Montagnes magazine wrote.

A tent on a small platform at a steep slope.

One of the bivouacs. Photo: Matthias Gribi/Facebook


“Despite poor ice conditions, difficult mixed and rocky terrain, belays in deep snow, a bivouac sitting with feet hanging over the void and four bivouacs (three on the way up and one more on descent), we achieved our goal,” Gribi wrote on social media.


As the climbers progressed, the options for retreat decreased. On the fourth day, 14 hours after an early start and more committed sections behind them, the climbers felt “relieved” to reach the summit slope just before sunset.

“Until the last moment, we were not sure we would be able to get through, and a retreat would have been very complicated,” the climbers explained.

They summited in total darkness, then descended the west side of the mountain.

the climbers in the light of the camera flash, with hoods on, with pitch black background.

Summit in the dark. Photo: Matthias Gribi/Facebook


The climbers called the new 1,400m route Tomorrow is another day and graded it ED, WI4, M6, A2, 5c.

The new route marked in red on a photo of the north face.

The new route. Photo: Matthias Gribi/Facebook


A British team first climbed the Flat Top in 1980. In 2018, Timothy Elson of UK and Richard Measures of New Zealand attempted a new route up the north spur.

These three young Swiss climbers told Montagnes magazine they intend to return next year, perhaps for a try nearby Kishtwar Eiger (6,000m).

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.