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2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Broad Peak Summit Push Stopped

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Feb 062020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Broad Peak Summit Push Stopped

The Karakorum continues to play tough. Yesterday the only team on K2 quickly flew out ending their effort and today the Broad Peak team halted their summit push but suggest they will try again in February to meet Denis Urubko’s definition of winter. Broad Peak – Illness Stops Summit Push Don Bowie developed some kind of lung issue forcing he and Denis to abandoned their summit push. I hope it wasn’t HAPE and he can recover. They still have 23 days to go until the end of February. Urubko posted on Facebook: We fixed tent and drink soup in ‘my’ continue reading

Feb 052020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Update on Everest Hanging Serac

Last Autumn, several teams abandoned their Everest climbs fearing a teetering serac above the Khumbu Icefall. It was so massive that if it fell, it would shatter directly on top of their route killing anyone there instantly. Echos of a similar release in 2014 were loud. That incident killed 16 Sherpas. So the big question has been, is it still there?   The serac hangs about 3,000 ft​【914 m】up off of the Khumbu Icefall on the west shoulder of Mount Everest, midway above the Icefall’s Football Field spot. It was estimated to 200-300 feet tall. Jost Kobusch is taking the West Ridge continue reading

Feb 052020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs:K2 Winter OVER, Broad Peak Summit Push Underway

Huge news that Mingma Gyalje Sherpa‘s Imagine Nepal has ended its K2 winter effort. The reasons remain vague. The team flew back to Askole by helicopter ending speculation some might stay and join with Urubko and Bowie after their Broad Peak attempt currently underway. But we never know for sure until everyone is back home. K2 – OVER!! Mingma Gyalje Sherpa‘s Imagine Nepal team has ended their winter effort for “personal reasons” They had established their Camp 2 at the base of House’s Chimney at 6,600 meters, the lowest altitude reached by any of the eight winter attempts since the continue reading

Feb 042020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: It's Cold Up there!!!

To state the obvious for the millionth time, climbing in the winter is cold, damn cold. Currently, the Karakorum climbers are seeing still air temps of -20F/-29C this week. Even with the best down suits, you have to be very active to stay warm and with most of the climbers doing the slow work of setting the fixed ropes or establishing camps, the chance of frostbite is large. Also, many of the folks are not using supplemental oxygen thus making them even more susceptible to the cold. Everest Txikon on Southeast Ridge – To C1 Alex Txikon and team are back continue reading

Feb 022020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Incident in Khumbu Icefall

Winter alpine climbing and especially in the Khumbu Icefall are notorious for objective hazards, i.e., avalanches, serac releases, and falls into open crevasses or through soft snow bridges. Today we saw more evidence this winter. First to Simone Moro on Gasherbrum, now to Jonatan García on Everest. The problem with these snow bridge collapses is that they are tough to anticipate. In 2001, I fell through one just outside of Camp 1 in the Western Cwm on Everest. I was roped in between two teammates. In those days, there were no fixed ropes. I followed Harldur, noting his footsteps, and continue reading

Feb 012020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Summit Push Called Off

Climbing 8,000 meters peaks are hard enough, but in winter all the odds are against making the summit. This winter is validating that axiom. The summit push was halted on Broad Peak due to strong winds and dangerous conditions, while an injury to Jost has temporarily stalled his solo effort. But Txikon did make through what he characterized as a very climbable icefall to reach the traditional site of Camp 1 in the Western Cwm. We are now in February, some call it the last month of winter. Everest Jost on West Ridge – Injury Recovery at EBC  German alpinist continue reading

2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Injury and Summit Push

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Jan 302020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Injury and Summit Push

The weather on Everest is making for slow progress but it’s better in the Karakorum where the Broad Peak team is hoping to summit soon. Everest – Back at EBC Jost on West Ridge German alpinist Jost Kobusch, is back at EBC after a quick trip up the Lho La according to his tracker. His high thus far was 6146 meters / 20164 feet on the Lho La Pass where he established two camps. You can track his location on this excellent map from 3D Reality Maps. He gave this recent update on Facebook: Back in Basecamp! There were only shreds continue reading

2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Update: Jost on the Move on Everest, Urubko/Bowie on Broad Peak

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Jan 272020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Update: Jost on the Move on Everest, Urubko/Bowie on Broad Peak

No progress on Everest or Broad Peak due to poor weather but plans to reach Camp 2 on K2. Monday, Jan 28 Update: Jost back on the move to the Lho La and Denis Urubko with Don Bowie are starting their summit push. Everest – Climbing Jost on West Ridge German alpinist Jost Kobusch, age 27, is stuck at base camp due to poor weather Monday, Jan 28 Update: on the move to the Lho La at 5681 m | 18638 ft according to his tracker. His high thus far was 6146 meters / 20164 feet on the Lho La Pass where continue reading

Jan 252020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Summit!

The first Himalayan summits of this winter season were on Ama Dablam while poor weather bogs down the other climbs. Ama Dablam – Summit! Alex Txikon and the team summited Ama Dablam. They will now move to Everest for an attempt on the standard SE Ridge route. His team includes Spaniard Oscar Cardo, Jonatan García and Nepalese Sherpas Chhiji Nurbu Sherpa, Pechhumbe Sherpa, and Tenjen Sherpa. Txikon posted on Instagram: It has been a day full of emotions. Thus we have lived the summit moment from the base camp. Because nothing would be possible without the work of the entire expedition team. Their home continue reading

2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Progress in Bad Weather

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Jan 232020
 
2019/20 Winter Himalaya Climbs: Progress in Bad Weather

Quiet across most of the Himalaya today. Progress on Ama Dablam while poor weather bogs down the Everest and Broad Peak advances. The K2 winter team is at base camp and will start climbing in a few days. Jost on Everest is back at base camp holding due to weather Everest – At Base Camp German alpinist Jost Kobusch, age 27, is back at Everest Base Camp according to his tracker. His GPS coordinates map to 5,272 meters/ 17,296 feet. His high thus far was 6146 meters / 20164 feet on the Lho La Pass where he planned to establish continue reading