Pakistan: Spotlight on Pumari Chhish and Trango Towers

The Pakistan climbing season has begun, with small teams going for first ascents and challenging free climbs. Jerome Sullivan, Victor Saucede, and Christophe Ogier of France are already working on Pumari Chhish East, Ishaq Jan of High Mountains Treks & Tours told ExplorersWeb.

The French team members (standing) before starting their approach trek to Pumari Chhish. Photo: High Mountains T&T


The climbers reached the mountain last weekend and have already started acclimatization on it. While theirs is not a pure alpine-style ascent to the untouched summit, they might be eyeing a capsule-style or semi-alpine climb. This means that they will cache gear along the way during their preparations, but will not fix the route or establish a chain of camps.

The French team is one of the four expeditions that received a grant from the American Alpine Club. Fellow grantees Jeff and Priti Wright are also expected to arrive in Pakistan shortly for their attempt on K7 Central.

The Three Marins for Trango Tower

Edu Marin is on his way back to Trango’s Nameless Tower (6,286m) for a free climb of the Eternal Flame route. Marin made a meritable attempt last year in hard conditions. On that occasion, Marin’s partners eventually left the expedition, leaving Marin alone. His only help on the frozen tower was from a Basque couple who happened to be there.

This time, he has decided that you can’t trust anyone more than your own family. Hence, the 37-year-old Edu will climb with brother Alex Marin Garcia and father Edu Marin ‘Novato’ Rueda. The senior Marin has been an avid climber since 1966 and considers himself “more motivated than ever”. The three Marins left today for Pakistan, to free climb Eternal Flame in a single push. [Thanks to KrisAnnapurna for the heads-up.]

Edu Marin, centre, with Edu Marin Sr. (left) and Alex Marin. Photo: Edu Marin

8,000’ers: Nepal companies delayed

Seven Summit Treks has announced a slight delay on all their Pakistan trips because of the lengthy visa approval process. SST’s Nanga Parbat expedition was supposed to begin on June 6, but they moved that back to June 12. Nanga Parbat climber Tunc Findic  of Turkey also recently mentioned that his visa application was taking longer than expected.

Expeditions to the Gasherbrums, K2, and Broad Peak will now begin on June 21.

Several SST clients will continue their quest to complete the 14×8,000m list quickly, including Adriana Brownlee and Shehroze Kashif. Kashif, at least, doesn’t need a visa since he is a Pakistani citizen.

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.