2018/19 Winter Climbs: K2 Winds, Nanga Search to 6500M

The search on Nanga Parbat has made progress with searchers on the Mummery Rib using drones, however, no sign of Tom or Daniel at the end of Tuesday, March 5, 21019. The searchers will look on the Kinshofer route on Wednesday. The K2 teams have been stopped near Camp 3 and Camp 1 by high winds, once again.

Nanga Search Overview

It has now been 9 days since Nanga Parbat climbers Tom Ballard and Daniel Nardi went missing and their last sat phone communication with base camp. By now there have been multiple searches using helicopters with trained mountaineers and mountain rescue personal. They have sighted avalanche and tent debris but no signs of humans.  A GOFUNDME account is open to help offset the estimated $50,000 a day when helicopters are used.

Search Details

On Nardi’s Facebook page, which is the official source of news, they posted that climbers Alex Txikon, Muhammad Ali Sadpara, Felix Criado and Rahmat Ullah Baig searched the area between Camp 2 and Camp 3 plus used their drone to go as high as 6,500-meters/ 21,325-feet on the Mummery Rib with no signs of the climbers. One of the three drones they brought with them was lost in the process.

Notably, they didn’t find tents where Camp 3 was supposed to be located. Due to low temperature and avalanche risks, the search team was going down to lower camps for the night, perhaps even base camp before searching on the Kinshofer route on Wednesday

Anna Piunova, who is Editor-in-Chief at Mountain RU, Facebook page posted this picture from the search:

You can follow them on their sponsors site, Montane and Facebook.

Italian Peers Weigh In: Suicidal, Hopeless and Silent Respect

Perhaps correct but somewhat insensitive to the families of the Nanga climbers, Italian Simone Moro tells the UK Times that the route taken was “suicidal” because of avalanches and tumbling chunks of ice as big as cars. He went on “Going up the dangerous Mummery Spur on the mountain was like playing Russian roulette, and a Pakistani climber who was due to go with Nardi and Ballard pulled out weeks before the climb, claiming he did not want to die. When I heard they were missing I immediately suspected they were lost, and believe we are now looking for bodies.”

Tragically, Ballard’s girlfriend, Italian Stefania Pederiva, told another UK paper: “… has been ‘crying constantly’ since her boyfriend disappeared, “It’s pointless. No hope any more. It is hopeless.”

Finally well respected Italian alpinist Marco Confortola told Montagna.tv. ” … that he had nothing to declare except that what was already said to Dario Ricci of Radio24, a friendship he shares with Daniele Nardi. “It does not seem right to me to release interviews right now,” he tells us. “Out of respect for a mother, a father, a child” it is better to be silent than to say that pontificating from above explains. “It would be a bit of silence,” he reiterates.“Respect for Tom’s wife, Daniele’s wife and son” .


K2: Spanish/Galician Team – Helping on Nanga, Sherpas at C2 on K2

Four members of the K2 team lead by Alex Txikon’s , Alex Txikon, Felix Criado, Ignacio de Zuloaga and Dr. josep Sanchis, are helping with the search on Nanga. The Sherpas who remained on K2 climbed to C1 but were stopped by high winds. They are stocking camps for a summit bid by Txikon if/when he returns from Nanga. Txikon believes winter ends on March 20, so in his mind there is still time for a winter summit.

You can follow their movements on Alex’s GPS tracker, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

K2: Kazakhstan, Russia and Kyrgyzstan Team – Stopped near C3 by Winds

Part of the Kazakhstan, Russia and Kyrgyzstan team are resting in Base Camp while others are now below the traditional Camp 3 around  7,200-meters just above the Black Pyramid. They were stopped once again by high winds.

You can follow them on Instagram but Facebook and their site are the best sources.

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3 thoughts on “2018/19 Winter Climbs: K2 Winds, Nanga Search to 6500M

  1. Hi Alan,
    I saw on Everest Today FB page, that the search has been called off and the climbers, sadly, are presumed dead. Can you confirm this is the case?

  2. I admit that route looks like a huge avalanche field to me. I’m not an expert of course.
    What is the advantage of doing this route? I wish they had listened to the climber that left or that they decided not to continue with only two people.

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