(Newsdesk) They were downed by severe cough: "This was perhaps the first time I had seen him really ill in the last 15 years we have known one another," wrote Chad about David. The Swiss turned back on their Jobo Rinjiang attempt and left camp. Eventually, so did David Gottlieb.
Sitting out two days and two nights at 17,800 ft mulling a solo of the 4,000 ft wall, and with two other climbers scheduled to arrive on the same permit, Chad is still thinking to do something in the area. Here's why:
"While I was in the hospital recovering from having stage 2 colon cancer removed, following the death of my wife Lara 3 months earlier, I had a renewed outlook on life," he wrote.
"There were many things I had wished I might have done in my lifetime. Given the fact that the impermanence of life had given me a renewed sense of purpose I determined not to waste a single day remaining."
"Given the fact that death is ever near you are given a choice on how you are going to live. I for one do not want to have any regrets."
"[...] In these remote and wild places the elements reduce life to raw basics [...] I may succeed and I may turn back, but I have to at least try."
"Lunag Ri provides a shot at an unclimbed 6,900 meter summit. These are the best of the best opportunities. There is a blank slate on which to map out a route. If the conditions do not line up with what I need to climb and descend I will retreat."
Lunag Ri can be seen from Cho Oyu BC looking through Nangpa La and actually represents the highest unclimbed mountain in Nepal.
Chad Kellogg has climbed extensively throughout the states and South America, with a number of new routes from Alaska to Argentina, and a large number of first ascents in China. He made speed climbs on peaks such as Mount Rainier (2004) and Denali's West Buttres (solo speed record) in 2003, and several attempts to speed climb Everest no O2. He soloed Aconcagua's south face via a new route and made the first ascent of Pangbuk Ri (6,625m) with David Gottlieb.
Specialized in new routes and/or first ascent on Himalayan 6000ers, top mountain & climbing photographer David Gottlieb used to partner with the late Joe Puryear. In 2009, David and Joe climbed Lunag Ri SE and compiled a map of the area for others to follow. October 27 2010, while ice climbing on Labuche Kang in preparation for a first ascent of the 6,771-meter (22,215-foot) Takargo peak, a cornice broke off and Joe fell to his death. In 2012 David returned to Lunag Ri with fellow American Chad Kellogg to attempt the highest top (6895m) in the massif.
Everest direct: ExWeb interview with speed climber Chad Kellogg
Debrief: Chad Kellogg and David Gottlieb first ascent of Pangbuk Ri
Best of ExplorersWeb 2010 Awards - Special mention
Climbing community worldwide mourns Joe Puryear, lost in Tibet
Puryear and Gottlieb’s Jobo Rinjang debrief: First ascent on the wild side of Khumbu
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