Himalaya 2008 climbing season, Karakoram and Himalaya wrap-up /20/ – Week in Review.

“Live your dreams. No one can stop you. Time and time again you hear this refrain but it’s the cold truth. Only you can do it so if you want it, make it happen.”

This quote by South Pole skier Kevin Vallely is all the more important in these financial times and probably rings very true with a certain Barack Obama. Tuesday, United States triumphantly elected its first African-American President and change is in the air: in light of pre-election statements mountaineers might want to watch Karakoram, however.

Last week was truly packed at ExplorersWeb. “Critical Skill” kicked off – possibly the coolest training ever offered – and there’s an unusual send-off coming up: Don Pettit is going back to the Space Station and ExWeb got VIP invite.

In other news: more interviews with South Pole skiers, Novo touch down, a number of new lines in Himalaya plus serious traffic jam in Lukla. And finally, “I will always remember Iñaki’s eyes” said Nima Nuru Sherpa, one among the climbers awarded a prestigious medal in Spain last week.

Makalu west face …greeted Steve, Vince and Marko with crossfire of ice. The climbers were considering extending their climbing permit in case the weather improves.

Nuptse: New route on the South face French climbers Patrice Glairon-Rappaz and Stéphane Benoist forged a new route up the South face of Nuptse, alpine style, the French Climbing Federation (FFME) reported. “Patrice and Stéphane climbed the 2,300 meters-long wall up to the summit ridge in a non-stop push, alpine style,” FFME stated. According to the report, the climbers reached the summit ridge on October 28th, after four days on the wall. There is no mention on them proceeding to the 7 861meters’ summit. Stepháne suffered frostbite on the climb, and was airlifted from BC on November 1st.

Fall on Pumori French climber Corinne Favre and her guide suffered a serious accident on Pumori, reported Kairn.com. Sunday November 2, Corinne and her Sherpa guide fell on descent due to a big serac breaking off the wall. The two were found at 5.700 meters and helped down to Gorak Shep at 5.140 meters where they spent the night monitored by friends and a French doctor. Favre seems to have suffered multiple fractures and pulmonary complications. Her overall state was critical and by the time the rescue helicopter arrived on Monday she was unconscious. The mountaineer is currently hospitalized in Kathmandu, no word yet on the state of her guide Sherpa.

Air-traffic jam in Lukla Thick fog kept planes grounded at Lukla airport end last week – leaving trekkers and climbers returning from the Khumbu valley stranded. “There were 1500 people in Lukla, waiting to fly,” IMG reported Thursday.

Mess at Pumori: “We know who you are” Another report has arrived about climbers leaving trash behind, this time on Pumori. “(The mess in BC) has your name on it so we know who you are and we have pictures too!” dispatched Peak Freaks. “You may want to consider reimbursing us for our expenses to clean it up, carry it out and disposal fees.”

Ama Dablam: Weekend summits – and one accident? Alpenglow, IMG, Adventure Consultants reported summits last weekend. Rumors were that there was an accident involving one climber on Ama Dablam Saturday, but this has not been confirmed.

Medals and a toast to Iñaki Ochoa The climbers who risked their lives trying to rescue Iñaki Ochoa de Olza from Annapurna last spring, were awarded the Golden Medal to Sports’ Merits by the local government of Navarra – the Spanish region where Iñaki was born.

“I will always remember Iñaki’s eyes, so transparent,” Nima Nuru Sherpa recalled. “We always treat our costumers as guests, but Iñaki behaved in a different way,” Nima added. “He was just happy in Nepal, felt right at home – and made us feel as equal team members. He was our friend.”

In Seoul, attending the Piolet d’Or Asia ceremony with Boris Dedeshko, rescuer Denis Urubko was unable to attend the Spanish award. To many, the biggest surprise is probably that the Piolet d’Or prize still exists at all. A small team of Japanese climbers are the winners (check in for names and climbing details on RussianClimb.com). Other nominees were Eight women’s Peak (Kazakhstan), Batura II (Korean team) and Meru (Korean team).

Tengkangpoche: Spanish young-guns’ new route on the north face Manuel Córdova, Silvestre Barrientos and Sidharta Gallego climbed up an ice ramp (70º/90º) to the saddle between Tengkangpoche’s and Ramdung’s summits, opening a new, 2300 meters-long route on the north face. The climbers turned back some meters shy from the summit ridge, due to bad ice conditions.

First ascent of Kang Nachugo: debrief and stunning images Alpinists David Gottlieb and Joe Puryear made the first ascent of Kang Nachugo (6,735 m) in the Rolwaling Himal over 5 days alpine style, summiting on October 17. In their well-written debrief, the amazing climb is also illustrated by stunning images.

Kang Guru: too windy Altitude Junkies/Project-Himalaya team was forced back from high camp on Kang Guru due to increasing winds which flattened some tents and made it impossible for the Sherpas to fix ropes on the upper sections. The team hoped to launch a new summit bid as soon as the winds subside.

Exweb Week-In-Review is sponsored by HumanEdgeTech the world’s premier supplier of expedition technology. Our team helps you find ultra light expedition tech that works globally.
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