Winter Climb Updates!

makalu high camp
ExWeb has posted a couple of updates on some of the bigger ongoing Winter climbs from around the World.

First up, we have this report from Pakistan, where Simone Moro is hoping to have another crack at Broad Peak in the Winter. He’ll have to go it alone however, as the latest news is that his climbing partner Leonhard Werth has left the country and is returning home to Italy. The entire climb has been in a holding pattern in Skardu thanks to a string of misfortunes including missing climbing gear, poor weather, inflated prices from the porters, and the inability to organize a chopper to airlift the mountaineers to BC.

Meanwhile, over on Makalu things are going a bit better as the two teams there have already established their camp at 7000m. Bad weather has set in, with a blizzard raging on the mountain, which caused them to retreat to BC to wait out the storm however, so they’ll have to wait to see if a weather window opens again soon. This Winter “hurricane”, which is producing 200 km/h winds, is expected to last through tomorrow. Kazakh climbers Denis Urubko, Serguey Samoilov, Eugeny Shutov and Gennady Durov make up one of the teams on the mountain, while Italians Nives Meroi, Romano Benet and Luca Vuerich make up the other.

A long way from the Himalaya and Karakorum, another Winter climb was to begin this week, but has been called off for the year. is reporting that Artur Testov has abandoned his attempt to climb Denali solo in Winter. The Russian-American hiked through 25 miles of desolate Alaskan wilderness just to reach the mountain, and in the process lost 25 pounds before he ever reached base camp. The weather wasn’t exactly cooperative either, as the temperatures dipped to -59 degrees F. On top of that, it was impossible to dig snow caves on the glacier, leaving him exposed to the elements for the entire approach. Artur hasn’t given up however, as he now intends to return next year, along with two companions. He claims to have found a new route to BC that will be more protected and allow him, and his partners, to arrive in a more rested fashion.

As if climbing these mountains weren’t hard enough in the Spring/Summer, these climbers have to give it a go in the Winter as well. Things are looking good on Makalu if they can get a break from the weather, but we’ll have to wait to see if Simone will even get a chance at Broad Peak, where the weather is reported to be good, but he can’t get any other breaks to go his way.

Kraig Becker

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