(By Raheel Adnan) “The Sherpas couldn't reach C3 due to snow depths of 7 feet and were 20 meters from being hit by an avalanche. With an earlier large avalanche spotted hitting areas of Camp 4, snow conditions are simply too unstable to attempt summit now. All teams thus returning to Base Camp to reappraise,” Adrian Hayes called his home team, on Thursday evening.
After acclimatization and rest in bad weather days, the majority of K2 climbers left BC on Wednesday (July 24th), hoping to be at top on July 28th. On Wednesday, the climbers ascended to C1 (6100m) while the Sherpas went directly to C2 (6700m). On Thursday the teams climbed to C2 (6700m) but the Sherpas couldn’t reach C3 (7200m) because of adverse conditions on the mountain.
Search and Rescue on GI
After several days of distress and dismay, some positive news comes from Gasherbrum I yesterday. Argentine climber Mariano Galvan reached C3 in the morning and assisted Alfredo Garcia's descent to C2, where they reached at around 1300hrs local time. Alfredo continued down and is currently in C1.
The search continues for Xevi, Abel and Alvaro, who are still missing. Although aerial search couldn't be conducted due to bad weather, teams went up from C2 yesterday and kept looking for the missing climbers who were at the summit on Sunday.
Iranians Dead on Broad Peak
Kooh News reports that after a meeting between families of the missing climbers, Arash Mountain Club officials and a team of experts, the search operation on Broad Peak has formally been called off. Aidin Bozorgi, Pouya Keivan and Mojtaba Jarahi have been presumed dead.
Gasherbrums Summit Pushes
Summit pushes are underway on GII right now. International team of Arnold Coster, Grace McDonald, Mark Quinn and Jonathan Kedrowski reached C2, yesterday. They’re planning to ascend to C3 today and summit tomorrow (July 27th). Belgian lady Sofie Lenaerts, who couldn’t reach the summit last week, is again going up. Her plan also includes a paragliding descent from top.
Several climbers, who summited GII last week, are now ready to bag their second summit of the season. Kiwi Chris Jensen Burke, Lakpa Sherpa, Belgian Stef Maginelle and Guido Riemenschneider and Maltese Gregory Attard are hoping to reach GI summit early next week.
Four-members Czech team was last to reach the BC this year. The team’s plan for their summit push is not known.
This year a Japanese team reached K2 BC early in the season. Six climbers of the team were part of current summit push.
Marty Schmidt and his son Denali summited Broad Peak earlier this season. They’re climbing with Australian Chris Mellor Warner and Greek Alexandros Aravidis and Nikolaos Mangitsis.
British/Canadian Team includes Adrian Hayes and Al Hancock with four Sherpas.
Swiss Mike Horn and Fred Roux went to Broad Peak last week, to assist in rescue operation for Iranian climbers. They, along with their third partner Kobi Reichen, were also attempting to reach summit.
Alex Txikon, Felix Criado and Mexican Benjamin Salazar intended to climb Cesen route, but the conditions forced them to shift to Abruzzi Ridge. Now on Abruzzi Ridge, they’re forced to retreat to BC.
Argentineans Matoco Erroz and Juan Pablo Milana are another small team trying to ascend K2.
First Mongolian female to summit Everest, Badamgarav Gangaamaa, also had plans to attempt Mountaineer’s Mountain, but it appears that she remained on Broad Peak. K2 climb will not be possible for her this year.
Last year, more than two dozen climbers summited K2, but no one was able to reach the summit from the Southside in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Success in 2011 came from the Northside when four climbers - Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, Darek Zaluski , Vassiliy Pivtsov, and Maxut Zhumayev - made it to the top. 2008 was the disastrous year when eleven climbers lost their lives high on the mountain.
Based in Lahore, Pakistan, telecom engineer and mountaineering enthusiast Raheel Adnan is a reporter for ExplorersWeb's mountaineering sections. He shares regular updates on Twitter and runs his own blog at AltitudePakistan posting initiated climbing news from Himalaya and Karakoram.
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