Once again the news from the winter climbing expedition continues to come fast and furiously. The weekend had plenty more information to share as all of the teams on 8000-meter peaks posted updates on their progress.
We’ll start once again on Nanga Parbat where Polis climber Tomek Mackiewicz and his French climbing partner Elisabeth Revol have set off up the mountain with an eye on reaching the summit later this week. They are currently stuck in Camp 3 where they report that the winds are howling at 100 km/h (62 mph), which is far too dangerous to proceed upwards in. They expect conditions to improve tomorrow however, with the hopes of reaching C4. The weather forecast predicts much calmer conditions on Thursday, January 25, so the currently plan is to launch their summit bid late on the 24th and top out on that morning.
Apparently this will be the duo’s one and only attempt at the summit. If they aren’t successful this time out, they are now prepared to come home. Keep in mind, this is Tomek’s seventh attempt at a winter summit on Nanga Parbat, which has become somewhat of an obsession for him. Hopefully they’ll get up and down safely.
Meanwhile, last Friday we posted that Alex Txikon and Muhammad Ali Sadapara had left Everest to make an acclimatization climb on nearby Pumori. At the time, we weren’t sure if they had planned to just go up as high as Camp 2 or if they would actually make an attempt on the summit, as the mountain can be quite treacherous in the winter due to avalanches. It turns out, the duo – along with two Sherpa guides – made short order of the 7161 meter (24,494 ft) peak, reaching the summit this past weekend. The ascent was reportedly very technical and windy, but they were able to safely complete it and return to Base Camp without any issues. They’ll now head back to Everest and continue their winter expedition there.
Over on K2, the Polish team continues to make stead progress. Denis Urubko managed to shuttle gear up to C2 at 6200 meters (20,341 ft) and spent the night there last night, while two of his teammates stayed in Camp 1 at 5900 meters (19,356 ft). They’ll like rotate up tomorrow as they continue acclimating while the weather remains relatively calm. While there is a lot of work to be done before they even think about a summit bid, things are going about as well as could be expected so far. The weather has been very cooperative and the team has taken advantage of those conditions while they can. Hopefully that will continue to be the case moving forward.
Finally, Lonnie Dupre and Pascale Marceau have arrived on Mt. Lucania in the Canadian Yukon. The duo had their start delayed yet again due to inclement weather, but were eventually flown out to begin the expedition. Unfortunately, the pilot couldn’t drop them off at any of their preferred starting points, so that made the ski portion of the trip longer than expected too. They’ve spent the past day or so shuttle gear up to Advanced Base Camp at 1463 meters (4800 ft) and will continue taking their equipment a bit higher while they prepare for an eventual push to the summit, which is still a full 9 miles (14.5 km) away in heavy snow and high winds.
That’s all for today. At the rate the news is coming in, we’ll probably have more to report soon.
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