(By Angela Benavides) Featuring the young Shimshal female climbers on 6,050m Mingligh Sar, the first summit pics arrived today from Karakoram. And it took only one morning to find a route through the Gasherbrum glacier for Simone & co; consequently Camp 1 could be up before the end of the week.
GII : Icefal route open
We managed to find a route through the maze of seracs and crevasses of the Gasherbum Icefall, Simone Moro told ExplorersWeb over email yesterday. It could take days to reach the base of the peaks, he added, but the good part is that the three climbers needed only a few hours and no rope fixing to reach the plateau on top of the glacier. The climbers will attempt to pitch C1 tomorrow, Saturday.
Mingligh Sar summit debrief
Shimshal Mountaineering School spokesman Majeed Karim debriefed on the Mingligh Sar summit:
Dur Begum (30), Farzana Faisal (22), Takht Bika (23), Shakila Numa(25) Mehra Jabeen (21) Gohar Nigar (22) Hafiza Bano (16!) and Hamida Bibi (18) summited the peak on January 3rd (winter proper) along with instructors Qudrat Ali, Shaheen Baig, Wahab Ali Shah and Rehmat Ullah Baig. The expedition had departed the village on December 29th, 2010.
Summit push took place after a first acclimatization night, in clear weather but aprox. 30km/h winds. None of the girls had altitude-related problems; we were concerned about Hafiza, whos only 16, but she performed confidently and showed no health problems, Majeed said.
Summit day was reportedly cold and quite technical. All climbers in top shape, the push took off at 6:30am from BC in good weather. It took 4 hours to high camp and only another 40 minutes from there to the summit. Qudrat and Shaheen said the females climbed in alpine style and no ropes were fixed in spite of the icy surface. According to Qudrat Ali GPS readings from the top showed 45 km/h wind and -38ºC.
The original plan for a double header including Vulyoo Sar, another 6000er nearby, was scrubbed for lack of porters. "Many refused to join the expedition due to heavy snow fall at the time of departure from Shimshal, which left the team with inadequate supplies, Majeed Karim told ExplorersWeb. Otherwise the climbers would have been ready and willing to storm up their second target.
The Shimshal Mountaineering School founders hope to continue activities for locals (both male and female) in the future. To become part of the project, email email@example.com
Mountains moving politics: ACP meet Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister
A delegation of Alpine Club of Pakistan, led by president Col. Manzoor Hussain, met with Chief Minister Gilgit Baltistan Syed Mehdi Shah in Islamabad yesterday, Exweb correspondent and executive ACP member Karrar Haidri reported.
Both Parties reportedly agreed on the importance of mountaineering to promote tourism and create employment in the Gilgit-Baltistan region. The Ministry will support a joint Pakistan-China expedition this year and provide funds to establish Mountaineering Schools in Skardu (Baltistan) and Passu (Hunza).
Links to Karakoram 2011 winter teams:
Polish Winter Broad Peak team website
Simone Moro blog
Shimshal Mountaineering School email:
Mirza Ali's Pakistan Youth Outreach
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