It’s Over on Winter Dhaulagiri

Continued high winds and coming snow have killed the last hopes for David Goettler and Herve Barmasse on Dhaulagiri. They hoped for a weather window long enough to summit in a single alpine-style push. But the wind shows no sign of diminishing, and now they have to leave before heavy snowfall traps them in Base Camp.

Dhaulagiri long-term weather forecast

Forecast shown by David Goettler on social media, by


“We have decided to stop this time,” Goettler wrote. “Nevertheless, we have learned a lot and I am [still] convinced that it is possible to climb an 8,000’er alpine style in winter.”

Climbers on the rocky ground of the French pass, Dhaulagiri in background.

Herve Barmasse (in red) and David Goettler (in yellow) at the French Pass, with Dhaulagiri in the background.

That’s winter

The two climbers were attempting an extremely difficult feat: an 8,000m peak in winter, alpine style, by a two-man team. They had planned to wait in Base Camp until the end of January, but the weather has not given them a chance.

In a recent ExWeb interview with ace Polish winter climber Adam Bielecki (to be posted soon), he smiled and said regarding the pair’s Dhaulagiri experience: “That is exactly what winter is about!”

Goettler (right) and crew in the team’s Base Camp, facing the rocky cliff known as the “Little Eiger.” Photo: Herve Barmasse

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.