Too Hot on Nanga Parbat; Waiting for Weather on GII, K2

High temperatures on Nanga Parbat have made conditions too dangerous for the mostly no-O2 climbers remaining.

During the latest summit attempt, some aborted as early as Camp 1. Others, such as Juan Pablo Toro and Matoco Erroz of Argentina, risked pushing further up but had to dodge constantly falling rocks. In the end, they made Camp 3 safely.

There, a team of four Sherpas and a client, all on oxygen, also gave up their summit attempt because of bare rock and hard, old ice on the upper sections. Then it started snowing heavily.

“The decision was easy to make,” Toro concluded. “We are back in Base Camp after an epic descent with rocks rocketing down around us and three snow stakes coming loose as we rappelled down [because of the soft, wet snow].”

Khoo Swee Chiow of Singapore and his Sherpa team reach the top of the (soft) snow gully, under the Kinshoffer Wall. Photo: Facebook

 

Marco Confortola and Tunc Findik had a similar experience. The Turkish climber cited the arrival of the monsoon as partly responsible. Although it barely affects the Karakoram, it does impact Nanga Parbat. He had wanted to start his expedition earlier, but visa problems delayed his arrival in Pakistan.

Khoo Swee Chiow of Singapore is also back in Base Camp after a failed summit attempt and is possibly heading home. News is expected soon about Sophie Lavaud and Sengay Sherpa. It is unclear whether any climbers remain willing to attempt Nanga Parbat. If not, the next group heading for the mountain will be Mingma G’s Imagine Nepal team, in August.

High temperatures have also made conditions harder on Broad Peak and may have contributed to the accident that took the life of Sharif Sadpara.

Summit pushes ahead on GII and K2

Caroline Gleich at the Baltoro some days ago. Photo: Caroline Gleich/Instagram

 

On Gasherbrum II, some climbers started a summit push two days ago, but have not updated since then. The weather in the Karakoram is currently poor. Denis Urubko also intended to launch a summit push on GII but shared no details.

While Gasherbrum II is not as crowded as K2 and Broad Peak, there are several teams, including Jagged Globe from UK, Kobler & Partner from Switzerland, and Alpenglow, with Topo Mena leading the way. Also on GII is Denali speed climber and skier Caroline Gleich, who hopes to ski down the mountain.

Finally, expectation grows on K2, as most O2-supported teams may be ready for a summit push. Chhang Dawa Sherpa of Seven Summit Treks has confirmed that his large team is ready and that the Sherpas have suppled Camp 3 with oxygen. They only need a good weather window to proceed.

K2 from Base Camp. Photo: Chhang Dawa Sherpa/Seven Summit Treks

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides is a college-graduated journalist specialised on high-altitude mountaineer 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 corporates, press manager and communication executive,and a published author.