Winter GI emergency - evening update: Choppers grounded, Darek and Agna's attempt to reach C1 thwarted by bad weather

Posted: Mar 12, 2012 10:12 am EDT

(Angela Benavides) Two Pakistani army choppers, expected in BC since Sunday, are still grounded due to bad weather.

In spite of the gale, Polish Darek Zaluski and Agnieszka Bielecka, who had remained in BC during the recent summit push, went up towards C1 on the normal route in the morning, according to Alex Txikon's home team. Darek and Agna hoped to spot Gerfried Goschl, Cedric Hahlen and Nisar Hussain - who are missing since Friday.

UPDATE 1pm. EST: According to comments by Polish readers on FaceBook
, Agna and Darek are back in BC. They were forced down by low visibility and high wind after covering only 1/4 of the way.

Clinging to last hope

Hopes are anyway scarce, since no one knowns for sure on which side of the mountain the missing climbers are. Last time the missing climbers were seen, they were approaching the summit from the peak's south side. Once on top, the trio planned to traverse down the normal route on the north side. There's been neither sat-phone or radio contact.

Alex Txikon, who had also hoped to join the searching labors, has finally remained in BC, nursing frostbitten toes. Summiteers Janusz and Adam, and fellow Polish Tamara Stys, are also sustaining frostbites.

As for the helicopters, once airborne, the rescue team will carry Hassan Sadpara (Mount Everest Summiteer), Ali Raza Sadpara and Nazir Sadpara to aid in the search.

Polish summit video

Meanwhile, the Polish team has posted an impressive video on the summit climb in extreme conditions:

Links to 2012 winter GI climbers:

Polish GI winter team
Alex Txikon
Alex Txikon's SPOT
Gerfried Göschl
Cedric Hahlen
#Mountaineering #topstory

Agnieszka Bielecka at the radio in BC.
courtesy Polish winter GI expedition 2012, SOURCE
Adam Bielecki on winter GI summit (video clip).
Image by Adam Bielecki courtesy Polish winter GI expedition 2012, SOURCE
G1 summiteer Janusz Golab is a veteran mountaineer.
Image by Agnieszka Bielecka courtesy Polish winter GI expedition 2012, SOURCE