Himalaya 2011 climbing season, Karakoram and Himalaya wrap-up /6/ – Week in Review.

Greg Mortenson on trial, Erhard Loretan killed, Ueli Steck’s unexpected climb, Abele Blanc done at last: in a fairly calm (so far) Himalaya climbing season the news have been anything but. Other: Osama Bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion on KKH today, Sunday.

Osama Bin Laden was found not in a cave in Afghanistan but a fancy mansion close to Islamabad. This could put serious tension on US relations to Pakistan and change the upcoming climbing season scene. A global travel warning for Americans has been issued.

Editorial: Three Cups of Tea and Krakauer’s Beef Greg Mortenson has spent most of his life building schools in Pakistan. In areas where many women are still hidden behind shut doors, Greg dared the unthinkable: he built schools for girls. “No good deed shall go unpunished?” asked Tina Sjogren in response to Krakauer’s accusations.

Erhard Loretan and Kip Garre killed in accidents Swiss mountaineer Erhard Loretan died in a climbing accident in the Swiss Alps on Thursday afternoon. American ski mountaineer Kip Garre, 38, was killed in an avalanche near Lone Pine, California on Tuesday.

Sherpa legend dies Nawang Gombu Sherpa, the youngest on Hillary’s Everest team in 1953, died at age 79 during Easter Sunday.

Ueli Steck summits Shishapangma 20 hours tent-to-tent “That’s right- the Shishapangma Expedition is over, the yaks already on their way,” read the dispatch on Don Bowie’s website. Already on Cho Oyu, Ueli solo-speed climbed the peak during a recon tour and Inaki tipping his hat above.

This adventure that we have shared: Abele Blanc summits Annapurna Abele Blanc, 57, scaled Annapurna, his last 8000er. This is a major triumph for the Italian mountaineer who had attempted the peak six times already and lost his best friend there.

Jae-Soo Kim climbs Annapurna According to Korean media, Jae-Soo Kim (50) climbed Annapurna on March 26, along with Byoung-Woo Shon, Chang-Ho Kim (BuSan Dynamic) and Sung-Ho Suh (BuSan Dynamic). Chang-Ho Kim and Sung-Ho Suh originally hoped to open a new route on the peak but bad weather forced them to change plans. Jae-Soo reportedly plans to repeat Cho Oyu this fall in order to place a photo of his climbing partner the late Miss Go (Mi-Young/Mi-Sun Go) on top. Miss Go was on a quest to summit all 14, 8000ers when a climbing accident took her life. Jae-Soo wants to bring her picture to the summits she didn’t climb.

Iran summits Manaslu Iranian Mountaineers reached Manaslu summit at 14:15 (Tehran Time) on Friday April 30 reported IMZ.

Spring 2011: Swiss rescuers standby in Nepal For the second year, mountain rescue specialists of Swiss Air Zermatt are present in the Nepalese Himalayas. In the months of April and May they are training Nepalese helicopter pilots and rescuers of Fishtail Air how to perform rescues at high altitude. In the meanwhile the crew is on standby.

Everest wrap Except for a commercial vs. independent climbing clash (“Willi sat next to me and told me to be patient as this is what things are like here,” Edurne reported from the expedition leaders’ meeting on Everest south side. “Like this?” I said to him, “but are we all stupid or what?”) Mount Everest has been uneventful so far. On Everest south side, Everest climbers are in a camp 3 (7350m) rotation. That over with, summit push will be next pending weather. On the north side, climbers are acclimatizing in the north col camp and above.

North Pole wrap-up: April 26 was due date for pick-up by the Russian helicopter. All the last degree and last two degree skiers were picked up at the North Pole and flown to Longyearbyen while the remaining Russian staff started to dismantle Barneo’s tents. Two sets of amphibious cars, who attempted an Arctic crossing, were halted by technical problems and open water. The ski teams from the NP are still heading south to Greenland.

Diabetic pilot, Douglas Cairns, flies to the North Pole A diabetic & former British Royal Air Force jet pilot, Douglas Cairns, flew from Alaska to the Magnetic and Geographic North Poles in a light twin-engine, piston powered aircraft. After circling 90 deg N, he flew to Barneo and landed on the ice runway where they fixed two problems on the plane.

ExWeb interview with Wendy Booker, to the North Pole with Multiple Sclerosis, “we can’t take a single day for granted” Running beside a dogsled on the Arctic Ocean, Wendy’s ability to run long distance was born out of a challenge she set for herself after being diagnosed with MS, she told ExWeb.

Polar other:The Greenland British team who wanted to attempt a speed ski world record, went home before they started. One of the Ellesmere circumnavigation team broke his back in a kayak accident. Very low visibility and freezing fog at the North Pole grounded the Polar Pumpkin at Eureka, Canada. Since the Cessna lacks de-icing capabilities. Art Mortvedt finally canceled his flight to the North Pole.

Georg Sichelschmidt’s advice to cross from Greenland to Ellesmere Island: take a kayak, not a sled Georg Sichelschmidt and Ondrej Kotas planned a round trip, sledge-hauling on north western Greenland across to Ellesmere Island. Broken sea ice and broken stoves prevented them from making a crossing. Georg told ExWeb about the conditions.

Into The Cold – A Journey of the Soul: DVD release Into the Cold retraces Sebastian Copeland and Keith Heger’s ski expedition to the North Pole. The film is as much about adventure and advocacy as it is a deeply personal journey by foot to the top of the world.

Human power circumnavigation update: Dimitri Kieffer without a gun in polar bear territory Dimitri Kieffer is closing in on his destination with water/river crossings, potential bear encounters and potential annoying rain ahead. Lately he has been traveling up a crevasse filled Shirokaya River, crawled and grinded up a steep pass, and saw polar bear tracks around his tent.

Erden Eruç finishes the Indian Ocean In the middle of March Erden Eruç returned to his rowing boat on Madagascar as the cyclone season in the area was winding down. His aim was to finish the crossing of the Indian Ocean, and on April 21th he successfully reached mainland Africa.

Urban exploration: Kagge’s notes from the underground “The going is slow when you hike on slippery shit, toilet paper and brown water, but we were never in a hurry on this trip.” The first to do all three Poles, this time Norwegian pioneer Erling Kagge decided to face his biggest fear. Don’t miss his report.

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