First, the unfortunate news that Jean Troillet’s Annapurna Team has called it a day, and will now head home. The weather conditions never allowed for a proper attempt at the summit, as it continues to be incredibly unstable at high altitude thanks to all of the snow that has hit the mountain in recent weeks. Troillet says they may not be done with the mountain just yet though, but I can only assume that he means to return sometime in 2009.
Meanwhile, Dodo Kopold is climbing with Peter Masek and Martin Minarik on Annapurna’s north side, where they have climbed up to 6300 meters and established Camp 2, but not without great effort. The team reports that seracs above 5200 meters has made it very tough going. So tough in fact, that fixing lines has been impossible, and they’ve had to climb up and over most of the seracs they have encountered so far. Worse yet, they say that there are still more to come before they can make their attempt on the summit itself, and high winds have made the climb a challenge.
A similar story is told from the Croatian team on Annapurna, who have managed to work their way as high as 7200 meters en route to Annapurna II, but before the could proceed on to Annapurna IV, they were turned back by high winds as well. They are now waiting for a weather window to open to allow them to go for that summit, after establishing C4 at 7200 meters as well. They report that things are quite unstable though, with many avalanches and blowing snow.
A couple of other quick notes from the region. ExWeb notes that the Peak Freaks Team has established Camp 2 on Pumori, the 7161 meter peak they are climbing in lieu of Shisha Pangma. Also, Adrian Ballinger is reporting from Ama Dablam, where he is climbing with AlpenGlow Expeditions, that conditions on the mountain are quite nasty. In fact, there hasn’t been a single summit on Ama Dablam this season, with no one going above C2. Sounds like they have their work cut out for them!
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