Himalaya wrap-up: Minarik & Revol reach Annapurna Eastern summit, Everest climbers in Chinese Basecamp, new routes ahead on Pumori and E-Gongga

Posted: Apr 20, 2009 03:31 pm EDT

(MountEverest.net) Martin Minarik and Elisabeth Revol reached Annapurnas Eastern summit - fierce winds prevented further climbing along the ridge to the main top.

Good weather allowed Everest climbers to reach C2 and Manaslu teams to venture back up on the route.

Meanwhile, news have arrived of Russian new route attempts: on Pumori and in alpine style on Sichuans E-Gongga.

Lhotse-Everest traverse

Kazakh LET team members are moving fast on Everest. Last Thursday they pitched tents on C2 at 6,500m. All good places had already been occupied or marked by the commercial expeditions, Andrey Verkhovod reported from Almaty. However, they found room enough to plant two tents.

That same afternoon they proceeded up for a reconnaissance trip towards the Lhotse wall, in order to study the face and also Everests West ridge.

Everest south side

Weather conditions are remarkably calm this year, Peak Freaks reported. According to several teams, good weather through the weekend allowed most climbers to spend at least a night in C1, make day trips to C2, and return to BC.

Tim said a serac fell off the West shoulder on Friday causing some concern, PeakFreaks home team added. It was determined that the route in that section needs to be pulled away from that part of the mountain, so the Icefall Docs worked out a new way.

IMG Sherpas are gathering ropes and gear from other teams, and preparing to start fixing up the Lhotse face towards C3 next Wednesday.

Seven Summits Club's Victor Bobok, Alexander Perepelkin and Sonam Sherpa reached the top of Amadablam (6856m) on April 18 as the first climbers this season.
The team reports it also was the first to top out Island Peak this season, on April 9, together with two other expedition members Victor Serov and Andrey Luss.

Victor Bobok will see the group off to Lukla and then head to Everest BC as guide for Alex Abramov.

Everest north side

Saturday, SummitClimb reported from BC: This is our 3rd day in Chinese Basecamp at 5200 metres/17,000 feet. We anxiously await the arrival tomorrow of 56 yaks to carry equipment to ABC at 6400 metres/21,000 feet. The team is also moving tomorrow towards ABC, but spending two nights at an interim camp at 5800 metres/19,000 feet to continue the acclimatization process.

Norwegian Jarle Traa is off to the Himalayas, after having acclimatized in the Caucasus by climbing Elbrus twice. Im attempting Everest from its north side, Jarle told ExplorersWeb on Saturday. Tonight I am leaving for Kathmandu and hopefully there will be no problem with my visa. Hopefully, Ill arrive in BC by April 23-24.

Im climbing alone, without supp. oxygen or any Sherpa support, just as I did on Shisha in 2006 and on Cho Oyu in 2004, Traa added.


Czech Martin Minarik and French Elisabeth Revol reached Annapurna's Eastern summit (8,021m) earlier today.

Following eight days of rough conditions on the peak's south side, the climbers set off from their camp at 7,500m (on Annas ridge near roc Noir) early morning today.

They pushed as far as the Eastern summit, but high winds forced them back without reaching the main top. Martin and Eli are currently descending back to BC.

Meanwhile bad conditions on Annas north side have thwarted all of Babanov & Afanasievs attempts to acclimatize up any of the routes. A first push up the Czech route on April 12 was called off due to a snow storm. On April 14 they attempted a second push up the classical French route, but turned around after two days due to high risk of avalanches and serac falls.

Just one day before they set off on the classical route, a huge snow-slide buried most of the ropes previously fixed by a Korean expedition, Babanovs wife Olga reported.

Valery and Victor are currently in BC considering their options, Olga added.


Here we are, back to the place we were three days ago: C1, Mario Merelli reported yesterday. The latest snow storm lasted for two days, but weather conditions seem to be improving now, so weve set off again from BC, loaded with all the gear we need to set up C2. Weather forecasts show no more snowfall, but winds may increase.

Pumori: Russia for a new route

Russias Krasnoyarsk team are on their way to Pumori (7145 m). Anton Pugovkin, Eugeny Beljaev, Igor Loginov and Vladimir Starov hope to open a new route up the south face while a second team of veteran climbers will climb via the normal route.

The veterans include Alexander Kuznetsov, Valery Kohanov, Nickolay Smetanin, Vladimir Karataev and Eugeny Bakaleinikov, as well as Saint Petersburg climbers Alexey Paskhin, Alexey Klimin, and Dmitry Pulinets.


Today was a mental and physical step forward toward the mountain, reported Ben Clark yesterday. We gained just over three thousand feet in elevation and are now camped in a school yard in the town of Mane Bhiyjang. There is no access to electricity, no more running water and we can't seem to find any sprite or snickers-a sure sign we're off the popular trekking circuits of Nepal.

E-Gongga (Mt.Edgar): Jannu North face climbers for a new route to restore spirit of adventure

Jannu North face 2002s summiteers Alexander Ruchkin and Mikhail Mikhailov are off to Minya Konka massif (Western Sichuan), hoping to achieve the first alpine style ascent on 6618ms E-Gongga. The climbers will go for the peaks SE face.

Our goal is to return the real spirit of adventure to mountaineering, to explore remote mountain areas, and to achieve first climbs on virgin peaks, by climbing in small teams, in alpine style, they stated prior to departure.

Alex and Misha reportedly reached Chengdu village yesterday.

Links to 2009 Himalaya expeditions:

Lhotse-Everest traverse
Mountain.kz - expedition's official website

Everest South side:
Everest traverse - Bill Burke's blog
Alex Gavan
Richard Hidalgo's blog
Singapore's women on Everest updates
Airborne Ranger Club of Finland
Croatian female Everest expedition
Scott Woolums' Adventures International
Altitude Junkies
Manuel Pizarro - news
Lance Fox's dispatches
Jason Maehl
Peak Freaks - Everest updates
RMI Guides/First Ascent - Everest dispatches
Johnny & Brian Strange's dispatches
Asian Trekking - news
Yuri and Laura
Nic Cunningham's updates
John Golden's dispatches
Billi Bierling - Everest diary
David Tait's dispatches
Adrian Ballinger
Alec Turner's dispatches
Eugene Constant's blog
Megan Delanty's blog
Chris Dovell's blog
Norwegians Hjertnes, Jacobsen and Rambøl
Gilad Stern
Robert kojetin
German Thomas "Tomsky"
SummitClimb - News
Laserer Alpin
Iberic Everest expedition
Nancy Norris
Abramov's 7Summits-club
Adventure Consultants
Alpine Ascents
Mountain Madness
Kenton Cool's dream Guides
Kari Kobler

Everest North side:
Czech Hornbein Couloir expedition - Libor Uher's website
Jarle Traa
Kanagawa University Alpine Club
Lee Farmer
Serbian Everest expedition

Edurne Pasaban
Jon Gangdal
Kinga Baranowska

Zangrilli's blog
Zangrilli's guiding blog
Roland Hunter's expedition blog
News on Vallejo, Iñurrategi, Zabalza - EiTB bogs

Martin Minarik
Elisabeth Revol's blog
Valeri Babanov
Nives Meroi & Romano Benet

Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner - news
Ralf's Amical Alpin
Hirotaka Takeuchi's blog
David Göttler's website
Xavi Arias' blog
News on Mondinelli on Montagna.org

Joao Garcia's expedition blog
Jean Luc Fohal's website
Andalusian female team - news
Lina Quesada
Carlos Pauner
Nick Rice's dispatches
Mario Merelli
Radek Jaros

Piotr Morawski - news
Peter Hamor
Polish Tatra Rescuers team
News on Mehdi Etemadfar -MountainZone.ir
Luis Stitzinger - news
Nobukazu Kuriki - English blog

Cho Oyu
Al Filo Spanish team's website

Lesser Himalayan peaks:

Puryear and Gottlieb on Lunag Ri
Ben Clark - Baruntse updates
News on Russian Pumori and E-Gongga teams on RussianClimb


French Elisabeth Revol (left) and Czech Martin Minarik are pushing for Annapurna's summit, via the East Ridge route on the South side. Image courtesy of Martin's website.
Kazakh traverse team off to C2. Image courtesy of the Kazakh LET team/Andrey Verkhovod (click to enlarge).
American Ed Viesturs getting ready for a night in Everest's C1. Image courtesy of First Ascent expedition's website (click to enlarge).
Lina Quesada & Co. on their way to Manaslu's C1. Image courtesy of Lina's blog/FAM (click to enlarge).
Jannu North face summiteers Alexander Ruchkin (left) and Mikhail Mikhailov are going for e-Gongga's SE face, alpine style. Image of e-Gongga by Tamotsu Nakamura; climbers' pics by RussianClimb (click to enlarge).
Russias Krasnoyarsk team are on their way to Pumori (7145 m). Anton Pugovkin, Eugeny Beljaev, Igor Loginov and Vladimir Starov hope to open a new route up the south face. Image courtesy of RussianClimb (click to enlarge).

Victor Bobok and his climbers reached the top of Amadablam (6856m) on April 18 and Island Peak on April 9 as the first climbers this season. Victor will now head to Everest BC as guide for Alex Abramov's Everest team. Image courtesy of the 7SummitsClub (click to enlarge).