There have been reports that Pakistan is having a mild winter, which might bode well for the K2 teams. Extreme cold is what stops many attempts.
Today we are trekking to ABC (advantage base camp) and will sleep there. The 14th it is early rise so we can keep on fixing the lines up camp 1 and hopefully along the way to camp 2. We will probably sleep in ABC and head back to base camp on the 15th.
Mingma Gyalje Sherpa: no foreigners, 3 Sherpas have their climbing permit from Pakistan and are on their way to Islamabad, Skardu and the trek to base camp. This is their trekking schedule to K2 BC:
- Dec12.Skardu to Askoli Drive
- Dec13. Ashkoli to Jhola
- Dec14. Jhola to Paiyu
- Dec15. Paiyu to Khurbuche
- Dec16. Khurbuche to Urducas
- Dec17. Urducas to Goro-2
- Dec18. Goro2 to Irani Camp
- Dec19. Irani Camp to K2 base Camp
- Dec20-21: Base Camp Set up and we will start further climbing plan according to weather condition.
Mingma summited K2 in 2014 and 2017 plus made an ill-fated winter attempt last year. He will not be using supplemental oxygen. The rest of the team includes Dawa Tenzing Sherpa and Kili Pemba Sherpa. Their Pakistan logistic is being managed by Lela Peak Expedition.
And the Rest for K2
There are at least two other teams (at least more may show up!):
Seven Summits Treks: 25++ clients supported by 21 Sherpas. Polish female alpinist Magdalena Gorzkowska announced she would join this commercial team. She has climbed Everest in 2018 as the youngest Polish woman and the first Polish woman to climb Makalu without supplemental Oxygen. She also climbed Manaslu without supplemental oxygen. SST gave this update:
1st Sherpa Team of International SST K2 winter Expedition 2020-21 led by @14dawa left Kathmandu today for the K2 winter expedition. They will start preparing Basecamp for the International team arriving next week.
Nims Purja: has confirmed he is going but still no details.
Overall it looks like there will be over to 60 climbers this winter, similar to a normal summer season.
There are also plans on nearby Broad Peak. Russian-American Alex Goldfarb and Hungarian Zoltan Szlankó are planning a climb, hoping to ski from the summit. Over on Manaslu, long-time climbers, Simone Moro and Alex Txikon will go for a winter summit. This from Moro’s IG account:
I have never loved leaving open and unfinished projects. Over the years, I have learnt and know how to lose and accept defeats, but I have never given up motivation on a project until it is done and accomplished. So, after two failed attempts due to heavy snowfalls that made the ascent impossible, I will return to Manaslu in winter for the third time, as I did for Nanga Parbat before reaching it.
It could be another dream, an additional piece added to my path in the cold of high altitude. A winter fifth on the 8000 would be a good thing, a story to live and be written. The ascent route will be decided from base camp in order to carefully assess the mountain and the snow conditions.
In this third attempt I will be with @alextxikon, Spanish alpinist already on the summit of Nanga Parbat with me in 2016 and Iñaki Alvarez, Txicon’s Spanish climber friend.
Memories are Everything