Himalaya and Karakorum Winter Update: Stuck In BC on Broad Peak

Climbing onBroadPeak
ExWeb has kicked of the week with a little news from the Himalaya and Karakorum, where things haven’t changed all that much in the past few days.

The latest news is from Broad Peak, where the team remains in base camp, waiting for the weather to break. Their biggest enemy right now is boredom, as they sit and wait, with very little to do. As the report indicates, during the spring climbing season, when you’re stuck in BC you can generally get out, go for a walk, converse with other teams, and so on, but in the winter, it’s a completely different story. The weather has confined them to the tents for the most part, and with the extreme cold, they are most often just sitting inside their bags, passing the time and waiting for their opportunity. It’s also quite lonely on the mountain in the winter, as there are no other teams there to help break up the monotony.

ExWeb also reports that the team requested a supply drop back on January 20th, but it is unclear if they have received it yet. The helicopter that would have delivered it has been grounded due to the weather conditions as well, and with food and fuel beginning to run short, it may be the supply issue that actually causes the team to close up shop and head home. They are anxiously keeping an eye on the sky right now though, as weather reports indicate a window could open this week. We shall see.

Meanwhile, there hasn’t been much news from Makalu the past few days, but late last week they were expecting the weather to clear up a bit as well. Simone and Denis were expected to set off for Makalu-La on Friday, which would put them at 7400 meters, and they were estimating that it would take them roughly two days to get to that point. The weather forecasts predicted high winds again over the weekend though, so it’s unclear if they actually reached their goal. The team did receive a replacement satellite modem last week however, and should now be able to upload dispatches with more regularity. At least in theory.

Looks like for now it’s “Hurry up and wait” for these two team, who are eager to have a go at their respective summits, and mark their place in history.

Kraig Becker

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