Karakoram Summer 2019: Summit on Nanga Parbat, More to Follow?

Yesterday we reported that a unified team of climbers was making a summit push on Nanga Parbat with the hopes of taking advantage of a narrow weather window. Today, we learn that the first summit of the summer season in Pakistan has taken place on that mountain, but it came a few days back just as this group was getting organized. Now, it looks like more summits are about to follow as the second squad closes in on the top.

Alan Arnette is reporting –– via mountain.ru –– that French climber Boris Langenstein reached the summit of Nanga Parbat on Monday, July 1. No further details of his ascent are provided and we can only assume that he has descended back down the mountain safely, as there have been no reports of anyone currently missing on Nanga. This has earned the Frenchman the distinction of nabbing the first 8000-meter summit of the season in the Karakoram.

Meanwhile, a group of climbers who arrived on Nanga separately have joined forces and are now nearing the top of the mountain as well. That team consists of Sergi Mingote, Moesses Fiamoncini, Ali Sadpara, Stefi Troguet, Vitaly Lazo and Anton Pugovkin. That team was in Camp 3 on the mountain yesterday and were expected to move up to C4 in order to get in position for the final push to the top today. They did manage to reach Camp 4 late last night local time and after a brief rest, they continued onward. Currently, as I write this story, the GPS trackers for Troguet, Mingote and Cimenti show them just below the summit and while it is too early to tell if they’ll be successful in reaching the top, it does appear as if they are extremely close to topping out. For now, we’ll just have to wait for more news.

On K2, the Seven Summit Treks team has arrived in Base Camp and has brought a large contingent of climbers with them. Roughly 65 mountaineers make up the squad this season, by far the largest on the mountain and the most I’ve ever heard of on the world’s second highest peak. The report that the rope fixing team has been busy while the weather has been good, installing the lines all the way up to Camp 2. That’s exactly where Mike Horn and climbing partner Fred Roux are headed today as they look to overnight at that point on the mountain. The duo were the first in Base Camp this year and are eager to acclimatize and stay ahead of the main group of climbers. I’d expect Horn and Roux to attempt an early summit, weather permitting, in order to avoid the busy summit push that will likely come in a few weeks time.

Over on Broad Peak, the Furtenbach Adventures team is back in BC after their first rotation. They indicate that the ropes are now in place on that mountain up to Camp 2 as well. At the moment, the weather is good although conditions are expected to change later in the week. They also hint that there could be a possibility of early summits this year, although it is too early to know for sure.

Finally, over on Gasherbrum I and II, Matt Gorbett and Matthew Randall are attempting to summit and ski both peaks this summer. So far, things are going well as the men have been shuttling gear up the mountain. Gorbett has apparently deposited a cache of supplies part way up the mountain to C2, but is currently in BC. He intends to rest there another day before heading up once again with the hopes of sleeping at Camp 1, 2, and 3 on successive nights. That should certainly jump start his acclimatization process and get him ready for the first summit push when the weather permits. The duo are also raising funds for the Special Forces Foundation and earlier today announced they had hit their goal by bringing in $21,920 in donations.

Once again, that’s all for now. It has been a busy few days in the Karakoram and it looks like it could stay that way for awhile. More news when there is information to share.