Manaslu 2008. Image courtesy of Nive's website (click to enlarge).
A picture is worth a thousand words - Polisk Kinga on Manaslu summit Sunday. Image courtesy of Piotr Pustelnik and Marcin Miotk (click to enlarge).
Lonely at the top - Kinga's summit pic, Nives and Romano update, true summit heads-up

Posted: Oct 07, 2008 04:09 pm EDT
(MountEverest.net) It is yet to be confirmed who reached the main summit and who stopped on the secondary top of Manaslu this past weekend.

Pictures and information are now pouring in to ExWeb, in particular from Italy following Nives and Romanos summit. <cutoff>

Yesterday, ExWeb wrote that some sources had the Italians summiting on Sunday, about one hour after Al Filo.

Paolo Roncoletta (journalist with the Italian Public Network Rai) who spoke to Nives on the phone clarifies today that Nives, Romano and Luca reached the summit of Manaslu Saturday at 10 am - that is one day before Edurne Pasaban's Al Filo team.

In an interview with Planetmountain.com, Nives reportedly said that the fixed rope ended about 30 meter before the true summit, and the climbers had to ascend the section without them. Italian Gian Piero from Italy reported to ExWeb today that Nives, Romano and Luca were helped by a commercial expedition Sherpas who broke trail until the fore summit. The Italians topped out only 12 days after reaching BC and without oxygen support, Gian added.

<b>Friday events</b>

Another top female climber, Dutch Katja Staartjes and her climbing mate Henk Wesselius checked in over email today reporting that the two reached the fore summit of Manaslu Friday, October 3d. "We were together with the small team from Himex on the fore summit, the two of us without oxygen," Katja reported.

The Dutch couple returned to the mountain on their own this time, with only their cook Lobsang. "We had a great time on this beautiful mountain," Katja added. "I regret we did not continue towards the main summit. On the other hand it did not look pretty well and our rope + part of our anchors were already used before. The weather that day was perfect. No Dutchmen has yet climbed the main summit."

<b>More about Saturday</b>

Edurnes team set off from higher camp on Sunday at 3.00am, and topped out at about 9.00. Edurne noted there is a rather technical section from the secondary summit to the main one, and thus some climbers stopped before the actual highest point on Saturday.

This was confirmed by Altitude Junkies/Project-Himalaya team members who reached C4 on Saturday. Leader Phil Crampton reported a number of climbers stopping at Manaslus fore summit on Saturday. There have been numerous summits of the central summit but at the time of this dispatch the only true summits we are aware of are two Italian climbers, Phil stated.

<b>Sunday</b>

The next day, Edurne and her Al Filo team finally fixed some rope on the section between both summits. Like Nives, Edurne bagged her 11th, 8000er when she stood on top together with Alex Txicon, Asier Izaguirre, Mikel Zabalza, Ester Sabadell, Ferrán Latorre and Juanjo Garra.

Also Polish Kinga Baranowska summitted Manaslu (main summit) on October 5 climbing with Edurne Pasaban's Spanish group confirmed fellow Polish climbers Marcin Miotk and Piotr Pustelnik. Hers was the first polish female ascent on Manaslu, and Kinga's fifth 8000'er since 2003. In another strong performance, the team returned to BC that same day.

"How different the mountain is today from when we were here last," commented Nives after arriving the crowded peak this year. "Hmm, so many changes from 2003, when only me and Krzysztof Tarasewicz were on the top," Piotr Pustelnik chimed in in his email to ExWeb.

<i>On Gasherbrum 2 this past summer, out of over 20 summits reported only a handful were true. Some statisticians ExWeb spoke to said they already have had to discount up to 40% of historically registered summits on this and other peaks. The situation has prompted climbers to more carefully monitor events on fore summits and main summits in Himalaya.</i>


#Mountaineering #feature