Ants on a wall. Upper part of the Bottleneck. Image by Khoo Swee Chiow courtesy Khoo Swee Chiow, SOURCE
Polish Adam Bielecki bagged the latest virgin winter ascent and followed up with a summer summit of K2. Image by himountain.pl courtesy Artur Hajzer, SOURCE
Hold up at 8300 meters. Adam is taking an hour-long nap. Image by Adam Bielecki and Marcin Kaczkan courtesy Adam Bielecki and Marcin Kaczkan, SOURCE
Polish debrief of a different K2 season
Posted: Aug 08, 2012 05:30 am EDT (Newsdesk) "You have to be sure on your feet" said Italian Nives Meroi who did it without fixed rope or oxygen and she wasn't kidding.
A recent debrief from K2 by Adam Bielecki published at polishwinterhimalaism.pl runs stunning pictures of the steep peak.
Still, this year's K2 climb was different in that an outfitter accomplished what has been considered impossible until now: to successfully guide the mountaineers' mountain.
The season was fairly stealth compared to previous, with few stories posted from the climb. The final victory is sure to bring on mixed feelings, some evident already in the Polish debrief.
Adam reports a mystery weather report set off initial confusion but the push finally commenced as planned on July 28. He and Marcin set off fast to camp 1 where they found their tent flooded by melted snow but the sleeping bags dry thanks to foresight to suspend them. The next day the climb went on to C3 at 7,410 m.
It was an all out attack: alongside the Poles were virtually all the season's K2 aspirants and the big commercial group with oxygen and Sherpas.
Trailing behind to camp 4 on the night of July 30th, Adam was surprised at the long line of headlights snaking towards the bottleneck, "[it] looked as if we were on Mont Blanc and not K2," he wrote.
Marcin stopped while Adam reached the base of the funnel at dawn until to his big surprise, he got stuck in a traffic jam caused by Sherpas fixing rope. Nevertheless the upper slope leading onto the ridge, "cost [me] more willpower than any other section ever cost me in my life," he wrote.
Following his non-stop climb Adam topped out July 31st at 10:30 am with, "quite a lot of people," and in strong wind. He came down fast, moving all the way to camp 1 that same day, reaching BC around 10 am on August 1.
28 people summited K2 on July 31st Arthur Hajzer told ExplorersWeb.
Out of the 28 trailblazers only 4 were without oxygen: Polish Adam Bielecki and Iranian Azim Ghaychesaz at 10.30 am, followed by Austrian Christian Stangl and Spanish Oscar Cadiach at 5 pm. The next day Slovak Peter Hamor and Czech Pavel Bem climbed K2 without 02 as well.
The result at this point: 30 people climbed K2 in 2012 including 6 without oxygen.
Also in 2012 (March) Polish Adam Bielecki (28) and Janusz Golab bagged the first winter climb on GI in an expedition led by Artur Hajzer. In 2011 Bielecki was with Artur's Polish team who suffered a hard descent after summit of Makalu. Adam will join the Polish Alpine Association's attempt to climb Broad Peak this winter.