Autumn 2019 Himalayan Season: Cho Oyu Summits, including Nim’s.

Shisha Pangma

A quick update on the autumn Himalayan season after yesterday’s full update. We have the first summits of the autumn season by the rope team on Cho Oyu, including Nirmal Purja. Also, another team leaves Everest/Lhotse.

Project Possible 12 of 14 Completed

Looking to summit all 14 of the 8000ers in seven months, Nirmal Purja, now has 12 in a mere 154 days: Annapurna (April 23), Dhaulagiri, Kangchenjunga, Makalu, Everest, Lhotse, Nanga Parbat, Gasherbrum I, Gasherbrum II, K2, Broad Peak (July 26) and today, September 23, 2019, he got Cho Oyu from the Tibet side.

Nirmal Purja summited along with one of his five expert Sherpa teammates, Gesman Tamang. The full list of today’s summiters include:

  • Nirmal Purja
  • Geshman Tamang
  • Palden Sherpa
  • Nima Tenzing
  • Pasang Sherpa
  • Chewang Sherpa
  • Esteban “Toppo” Mena
  • Lakpa Ongcchu

Next for Nirmal Purja are Manaslu, and Shishapangma – both are considered very achievable although reaching the true summit of Shish is a serious and very dangerous climb. He needs to complete Shish by November 23, to meet his goal of seven months. Nim’s said:

Straight after marking the 12th summit out of 14 x 8000m, now time to rush down to basecamp, cross border and be at Manaslu Basecamp by 24th Sept.

China has said all foreigners must be out of Tibet no later than October 1 fearing protests around anniversaries, holidays, remembrances, etc. thus leaving open the big question of whether they will give Nirmal Purja a climbing permit for Shishapangma. Additionally, China had said no climbing on Shishapangma a few months ago after a string of deaths and accidents on the lowest of the fourteen 8000ers. They felt the mountain had become too dangerous to climb.

Nim’s had asked the Nepal government to intercede and ask the Chinese to make an exception for him and his team so they could complete their project. As of today, there is no official word but there may have been an agreement in private. We will see once Nirmal Purja summits Manaslu. I’m betting he got the permit, he certainly deserves it and is fully capable of climbing Shish, assuming acceptable conditions.

Everest – More Climbers Leave Fearing Conditions

As I covered yesterday, the Mountain Hardwear CEO and one of their sponsored team (plus associated camera people and support) left the Madison Mountaineering team fearing a hanging serac above the Khumbu Icefall would release on top of them.

Now the Polish Lhotse team has also decided to end their effort. They posted:

On 22 September, the expedition manager marcin kaczkan decided to finish the expedition. The conditions on icefallu are extremely dangerous, over the road leading to the camp and hanging part of the ripped šerák, which threatens to attack icefall and operating people there. In addition, at this stage, it was not possible to go above camp I, and the further path would require the presence of climbers on endangered sections of icefallu. In view of the safety of the participants and the lack of chance to reach the summit, the only rational and correct decision is to end the expedition

This leaves Garrett and two clients, plus support, and Andrzej Bargiel who wants to ski non-stop, without Os from the summit to EBC and Killian Jornet on Everest. I will not be surprised to see all choose to end this autumn attempt.

Climb On!
Memories are Everything

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5 thoughts on “Autumn 2019 Himalayan Season: Cho Oyu Summits, including Nim’s.

  1. Yes, there continues to be confusion about Sherpa the ethnic group and sherpa the job title. What makes Nirmal Purja Purja Purja and Geshman’s quest so extraordinary is that their ethnic groups do not have the physiological adaptations to excell at altitude as do the ethnic Sherpas. Rather, they are relying on fitness and determination.

  2. By the way, the link to the Polish Lhotse team isn’t working for some reason. It goes to page not found.

  3. Geshman Tamang may not consider himself an ethnic Sherpa. Tamang is a major ‘tribe’ itself. (Note Nirmal Purja Purja Purja is also from a non-Sherpa tribe: Magar)

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