Mountain photos - amateur and professional photos of mountains.
Valery Rozov. Mont Blanc Base Jump
The John Harlin direttissima route with Heckmair exit climbed freestyle for the first time
Extreme mountaineer Robert Jasper (42) - considered one of the best alpinists in the world - together with his rope partner, the Swiss professional mountaineer Roger Schaeli (31), has forged another breakthrough on the north face of the Eiger.
From 20th – 23rd September Jasper and Schaeli climbed the world-famous John Harlin direttissima route with Heckmair exit in redpoint freestyle for the first time. The 1800m high route, known as the John Harlin direttissima on the north face of the Eiger, is one of the most challenging in the world, with rock and ice presenting real technical difficulties. (Mixed M8- /rock 7a E5 redpoint). The pitons left behind 44 years ago by the first climbers were very dubious. After the Eiger Japan direttissima (1st free ascent, Jasper/Schaeli, 2009), the “free Harlin route” is the second major “line” in modern freestyle climbing through the north face (pitons now just serving as security, no longer aiding progress). But it is so dangerous that climbing it in the summer was out of the question. Then again, in the winter it is too cold, which is why these two professional mountain climbers chose autumn. “It was a balance between what is just tenable and the risks on the wall,” said Jasper. “I made my first attempt at this route in the winter as early as 20 years ago I had to turn back on my own. After three further attempts I had gained the experience I needed. You have to know what is important here. When I climbed the north face of the Eiger whilst making the IMAX film with John Harlin III (the son of John Harlin II who fell to his death in 1966 on his first ascent when his rope broke) I was really affected by his family tragedy.” “Climbing this legendary route, I could not stop my thoughts from turning to that drama. As I lead climbed the very length of rope where John Harlin had his fatal fall in 1966, thoughts of my family and the risks of the mountain flitted through my mind, which was really tough. That route was the most emotional climb of my whole life!” After three days on the wall, at around half past eight in the evening, partners Jasper and Schaeli reached the summit of the 3970m high Eiger in true Alpine style. Elated but utterly drained, they set up their third bivouac a few metres below the summit on the knife-edge ridge. The next morning, an abseil down the 700m high south wall brought them back down to civilization.
Source: Robert Jasper
Date update: 13.08.2010
New Route On Khan Tengri
Gleb Sokolov and Alexander Kirikov team up and established new route on Khan Tengri (7010m).
The route follows approximately via rocky "snake-line" which is going down all along the wall between a classical WSW rib and "sickles".
The weather was marginal.
The team reached the summit four days ago after five days of climbing plus one day waiting for a weather window.
Details on arrival.
K2. We Lost Fredrik Ericsson
Early morning (8/6/2010) in America, the phone call came, it was bad news .... Fredrik fell .... We held the news figuring it would be 24 hours before his family was notified.
Fredrik Ericsson was attempting the summit of K2. The weather forecast was stated to be excellent. Some climbers did not believe the forecast. It was clear when Fredrik left for the summit. But then a very strong storm moved in. The forecast was very very wrong. He fall down about 1000 meters. His body was seen by Yura Ermachek, a Russian Climber.
All Abruzzi climbers have turned around and headed down the mountain. They are very sad. Fredrik Ericsson was a friend to many.
We have been told Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner turned and returned to camp 4. We have no other knowledge on her summit attempt. She did not summit. Trey Cook, Fredrik Ericsson climbing partner, also attempted the summit but turned back after a few hours into the attempt.
A very sad day on K2 and for those of us who knew Fredrik he was a nice guy.... Our prayers go out to his family.
Source: Asghar Ali Porik, JASMINE TOURS
Amin Brakk. Girls Completed Czech Express
Russian-Ukrainian trio Marina Kopteva,
Anna Yasinskaya and Galina Chibitik (all female team)
just came back home from Pakistan where they completed
Czech Express on Amin Brakk. More details (in russian) More details in english coming soon
Denis Urubko. New Route on Lhotse
This morning Denis came back to base camp.
Now my intention is to take few days rest and than start for a no oxygen Everest attempt. The summit day should be the 23rd may. Only if the forecast suggest some other date I will change my schedule. Denis is just started to go down in the valley to meet friends and his girlfriend that are trekking toward Everest Base camp. They will come here also to wait my return from the Everest attempt.
Source: Source Simone Moro
The videos of the Trento Filmfestival 2010
Online the videos of the first five days of the TrentoFilmfestival 2010 WebTV, from Antoine Le Menestral to Krzysztof Wielicki, via Lothar Brandler, Erhard Loretan Mauro Corona, Nicolas Favresse, Hanspeter Eisendle, Kurt Diembergerand many more...
Climbing and mountaineering e alpinismo
Monte Sarmiento, North Face first ascent
At the start of April the German extreme climber Robert Jasper and his team, the mountain guide Jorn Heller and the photographer Ralf Gantzhorn reached the summit of Monte Sarmiento (West 2145m) via a new route up the North Face.
On 4th April 2010 a small German team comprised of Robert Jasper, Jorn Heller and mountain photographer Ralf Gantzhorn succeeded in climbing a new route up the virgin north face of the Monte Sarmiento, reaching it's west summit.
On 1 April the winds changed direction and they set off once again, only to dig themselves into a snowhole half way up the mountain in total white-out conditions.
Photos: Ralf Gantzhorn
Text/Translation: Nicholas Hobley
Source: Robert Jasper
20 days at the El Gigante Valley
The first time I’ve heard about El Gigante was in the summer of 2009 from a Mexican friend (Daniel “Wey”), who had been there a few years before, opening a route on the Basaseachi waterfall. A few months later he invited me to join with three other climbers with the objective of climbing a new route on El Gigante Valley.
Because there‘s not much information about the place, we didn’t really know where we were going to open or what kind of equipment would be needed, then, after three days of hiking through the jungle to carry over 300 kilos of equipment and food, we had the chance to see and pick the wall we feel more attracted to, so we set our base camp 20 minutes from Piedra Volada, an unclimbed 400meters beautiful and steep wall. When we made the first approach, we realized that it would take us at least another three days with many rope tricks, just to load all the gear to the base of the wall, and we only had 20 days.
We had to find a “quick” alternative, so we decided to try our luck on the famous El Gigante tower.
Most of the existing routes on this 900 meters impressive wall are aid routes and we’ve quickly understand why, the almost absent presence of natural protections, the pour rock and the brutal steepness, makes it almost impossible to free climb while you’re opening, so, most of the time you have to climb and wend your adrenaline starts to getting high, you try to hang on something, most of the times was on really bad hooks or even hanged with one hand and drilling with the other, really scary moments. Of course that this takes a really long time to progress but is the only way to make it possible to free climb…
There’s a positive side on that, as we could not be the four opening and climbing at the same time, we could explore and enjoy the endless bouldering potential all over the canyon field, at the end we opened almost 50 boulders, from V0 to V12 range, good fanatic moments! Sure if it wasn’t the inaccessibility of the place it could really be an overwhelming place, with hundreds of boulders shaped by the river.
We spent the first few days avoiding the poor rock and the blank sections, so we could get faster at half of the wall, where despite the much more steeped ground, also seemed much more solid than the first part and apparently with much more options to natural protections.
Once again we were wrong! After 400 meters of brutal work, opening and cleaning to make it possible to free climb, we got to a place that just wasn’t possible to move forward (at least for us that were seeking a line to go free), huge sections of poor rock in every directions that we tried to move. We all had the same feeling, it was time to stop and climb the pitches we didn’t freed on our way up.
We could free climb all of them, except the second last one, that wend I finally solved the moves after two days of effort, I was shut down by breaking holds twice after the crux and I was too tired to try it again. That pitch together with the second, are the hardest one.
We must thank our sponsors and friends who supported us so much:
Results: Nissan Xtreme by Swatch, Verbier 2010
Women Freeride World Champions Crowned:
Ski: Ane Enderud NOR
Men’s Competition Postponed to a Later Date this Week
Verbier, Switzerland – March 20, 2010 – More than six thousand spectators watched the world’s best freeride skiers and snowboarders take on the impressive 600 vertical metre face of the Bec des Rosses in Verbier, Switzerland, for the Nissan Xtreme by Swatch, celebrating its 15th edition.
Norwegian skier Ane Enderud has had an impressive season going from strength to strength.
Double Olympic silver medallist Julia Mancuso had an impressive first experience of freeride competitions, being the fastest women down the mountain and taking third.
Shannan Yates, American newcomer to the Freeride World Tour, won the women’s snowboard on the Bec des Rosses, with German Aline Bock taking second, giving her the World Champion title after four nice podiums this season.
Women’s Freeride World Tour Ranking 2010 (complete FWT ranking click here)
1. Ane Enderud (NOR)
1. Aline Bock (GER)
1. Ane Enderud (NOR)
1. ShannanYates (USA)
Source: Nissan Xtreme by Swatch
Himalaya (Nepal) Winter Expedition
Vassily Pivtsov (33) a member of the Kazakhstan National team project and David Falt (38) from Sweden will attempt the North Face of Kwangde Lho 6187m in Nepal staring in January 2010.
Pivtsov and Falt are aiming to do a pure alpine style calendar-winter ascent of Kwangde Lho (6187m) via the North Face.
Pivtsov and Falt will try a new route on the North Face if conditions permit.
Starting January 6th News updates will be posted on e9climbing
Picture of Kwangde: Courtesy of Simone Moro
Routes in the picture from left to right: Japannes route WI6 M5, Breashears-Lowe WI6 M?A?, French (Benoist) route WI5+
Sponsors: Crux, Redfox, Outdoordesigns, Rab, Human Edge Tech
Source: David Walter Falt
Russian Piolet d'Or-2009 goes to...
Russian Piolet d'Or goes to Alexander Ruchkin and Mikhail Mikhaylov new route Carte Blanche on peak 6134m in Minya Konka, Sichuan, China. It is situated in the Daxue Shan mountain range.
Other nominated routes were:
Gleb Sokolov, Vitaliy Gorelik, desperate two man FA on peak Pobeda West, 6918m, via "Verblud" NW buttress, 6B.
Peak Verniy (Cathedral Sobor), 5250m, direct NW face, 6B, FA.
Stolb (Tsar' Tron), 2850m, left edging of West face.
Kjerag North face, Norway
Sichuan, NW Face, China
Pamir's Marathon, 622km, 56 days: Peak Revolution, 5B, peak Communism, 5B, peak Lenin,
Peak Armoured Cruiser Varjag, 2430m
Read more about Ruchkin-Mikhaylov ascent
Pamir's Marathon. Video
Final Report of Mountaineering Expeditions Visiting Pakistan During 2009
Pakistan's Summer Moutaineering Season 2009 has finally ended.
A brief resume of expeditions on various peaks is given below
Source: Karrar Haidri, Member Executive Council Alpine Club of Pakistan
12-years old Zhenja Kazbekova sends 8b "Zhuzha, don't be chiken!"
12-years old Zhenja Kazbekova sent solid 8b "Zhuzha, don't be chiken!" on Aug, 20, at the Red Stone, Crimea.
"Zhuzha, don't be chicken!" was bolted two years ago by Andrew Vedenmeer for Mountain.RU Rock Trip Contest, and only Serik could do it then.
Zhuzha is nickname of world bouldering champion Julia Abramchuk, she was really afraid of falling while trying this route so the guys cried to encourage her everything that came to mind.. and then we decided that it is good name for this route.
12 year old Zhenja Kazbekova sent 8a+/b
This morning 12 year old Zhenja Kazbekova sent New Kenigsberg 8a+/8b, Crimea, Red Stone.
Fredrik Ericsson. K2 Ski Expedition 2009 - Update 3
2009-06-18 - Skiing on K2
K2, What a mountain. It is 8612 meters high, but when I stand here in base camp, at 5100 meters, and look at it, it doesn't fell like it is more than 1000 meters to the summit. It is a weird feeling when I know it is more than 3500 meters to the top.
A few days ago when Michele and I was on our first acclimatization trip we got to experience how big the mountain really is. We left base camp at seven in the morning and walked along the Godwin Austen Glacier for 30 minutes up to the foot of K2 and the start of the Cesen Route. With ski boots and crampons on our feet, poles in our hands and a heavy backpack filled with a tent, sleeping bag, primus stove, gas, food etc. and a pair of skis strapped onto it, we started the climbing. At the beginning it was a nice ski slope of 30 degrees with perfect hard packed snow. Nice to climb on. We climbed on the right hand side of a big snow slope close to a rock ridge to stay out of the danger zone of a large Serac hanging above the left side of the slope. The ski slope got steeper, between 40-50 degrees and the snow got deeper. I had a hard time to stop dreaming about the upcoming ski descent on this perfect slope in soft powder snow. But first we had to find a tent spot where we could spend the night. I would have liked to ski down straight away but for our acclimatization it is best to spend time on higher altitude. To find a spot for the tent proved to be very difficult. We started the search at 5700 meters but it wasn't until we reached 6000 meters, after a total of seven hours of climbing, that we found a spot that we could imaging being flat. After some digging and building we had a semi-bad tent spot with two of the corners hanging in the air. Guess who got to sleep on that side of the tent? Not surprisingly, I slept pretty good anyway.
The next morning both Michele and I woke up with a headache and it was blowing and snowing outside. Great! After breakfast and a bit of fresh air my headache was gone but Michele must have caught some altitude illness since he didn't get well until we were back in base camp. After chilling in our tent for a few hours it stopped snowing and cleared up so we put our skis on and started sliding down the mountain. We took it easy in the beginning since I am always a bit unsecure on a new mountain especially when it is steep and rocks around. The snow was better than we had expected, cold and just a little windpacked and it was sloughing a bit. When the slope opened up I could do bigger turns and carry more speed, just cruising down the mountain. I had a big smile on my face, cause even if only a third of the mountain, we were skiing on K2. I got 900 vertical meters of nice skiing before I, totally euphoric, took my skis off 30 meters from my tent in BC. I had just skied the coolest ski slope in the world.
We will now have a few days of rest in base camp, charging batteries, before the next ski adventure on K2.
Book that I'm reading: Richard Branson - Business Stripped bare - Adventures of a Global Entrepreneur
Sponsors: Dynastar, Tierra, Osprey, Hestra, Grivel, Adidas Eyewear
K2 and Laila Peak Ski Expedition 2009
This summer I’m going to Pakistan with my Italian friend Michele Fait to try to climb and ski the world’s second highest mountain K2 (8612m).
From Islamabad we have a one hour flight up north to Skardu, the last town before we hit the mountains. Skardu is our last opportunity to pick up gear and food that we need for our two months stay in the mountains. Epi gas for our Primus stoves, chips and chocolate bars are some of the things we will buy in Skardu. From Skardu a five hours drive takes us to the small village of Hushe at the end of the road. From there on we will continue on foot. Around June 6 we start the two days trek towards Laila Peak.
Laila Peak is one of the most beautiful mountains in Pakistan - if not the world -with its summit forming a perfect needle shape. The peak is synonymous with its northwest face which s down the mountains at almost uniform gradient forming a giant ramp. Its northern and eastern sides consist of contrasting steep granite. The mountain is located east of the Gondogoro glacier and west of the Chogolisa Glacier in the Masherbrum Mountains of Baltistan. Most people have set eyes on the peak after crossing the Gondogoro La from Concordia.
The first ascent was by a four man British team including Simon Yates, Sean Smith and Mark Miller who climbed the peak in 1987 via the west face from the Gondogoro Glacier. Simon Yates dedicated a chapter in his book The Flame of Adventure on the ascent of Laila Peak.
With approximately 1500m ascent the mountain can be climbed in alpine style in one day but many people will choose to bivi on route then summit and descend on the second day. Climbing is mid-grade with an inclination of no more than 55 degrees.
In 2005 Jörgen Aamot and I made two attempts to climb and ski the northwest face of Laila Peak. On both occasions the top section was too icy to ski so we turned around at 5950m and skied down to the Gondogoro Glacier (4500m). It’s my favorite ski descent of all times. Until this day no one has skied from the summit of Laila Peak.
This summer we will spend about two weeks on Laila Peak. It will be the perfect warm-up for K2 and hopefully we can ski from the summit this time.
K2 is the second highest mountain in the world and is located on the border between China and Pakistan. Reinhold Messner called K2 the "Mountain of Mountains" after his ascent in 1979. This pyramid of a mountain is right in the heart of the Karokoram Range and can be seen in its entirety from Concordia. It is at the head of the Godwin Austin Glacier which unites with a second glacier at Concordia to form the famous Baltoro Glacier. It is said to be the ultimate climb, since many consider it to be much more technically challenging than Mount Everest.
The name K2 is derived from the notation used by the Great Trigonometric Survey. On 10 September 1856, Thomas Montgomerie made the first survey of the Karakoram from Mount Haramukh, some 130 miles to the south, and sketched the two most prominent peaks, labeling them K1 and K2.
In 1954 the Italians Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni were the first to summit K2. They climbed the Abruzzi ridge. After the 2008 season K2 has been climbed 298 times but so far no one has managed to make a complete ski descent of K2.
K2 is known as the Savage Mountain due to the difficulty of ascent and the high fatality rate among those who climb it. For every four people who have reached the summit, one has died trying. Among the eight-thousanders, K2 has the second highest climbing mortality rate.
After Laila Peak we will arrive at K2 base camp around June 20. Then we will use about three weeks for acclimatization before we try for the summit. The route we will try to climb and ski is called The Cesen Route and is the south-southeast ridge.
Sponsors: Dynastar, Tierra, Osprey, Hestra, Grivel, Adidas Eyewear
Simone Moro and Denis Urubko had been nominated for the prestigious Eiger Award
I’m proud to announce that I and Denis Urubko had been nominated for the prestigious Eiger Award the winner will be presented the 6th June in Grindewald (Swiss). It is an award called “The Oscar of Mountainering”.
Simone Moro&Denis Urubko. Video Makalu Winter
Help Jim Bridwell
A group of Italian friends and mountain guides has created a fund to help Jim Bridwell, the American climber and mountaineer, overcome a difficult moment.
Jim, who has always been had particular close ties to Italian mountaineering, is 64 years old and is currently going through a rough patch: he recently lost his house due to failed mortgage repayments. This is not only due to the current economic crisis, but also to a mountaineering accident which he hasn't yet entirely recovered from.
A group of mountain guides and friends from Trento, Italy, has created a committee to help this great but unlucky climber overcome this difficult moment.
The Comitte has recently been officialised by the Italian Revenue Agency, with the following tax code: 9608136022.
A heartfelt thanks to all those who help.
Jim Bridwell - a selction of ascents and first ascents
1963 Northeast Buttress, Higher Cathedral Rock, Yosemite, CA, USA
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition. No summit on Kangchenjunga
The first day of our summit push on Kangchenjunga gave a big surprise. The weather was nice, the snow was solid to climb on and we were moving easily up to “The Hump“ at 6200 meters where the site for our first camp was. Only one problem, there was no tent where we left it a week ago. The wind had taken it for a little flight about a hundred meters away and dumped it into a crevasse. Luckily we found it and it wasn’t too damaged. A bit of duct tape could fix it.
The second day was a windy day. We made it up to 6800 meters before we got sick of the wind and found a nice crevasse to put our tent in to hide from the wind.
On the third day came the second surprise. Snowfall and whiteout. Totally opposite from the bluebird that the weather forecast promised. Without visibility we became spectators, sitting in our crevasse all day watching the snow piling up outside. The next morning the sun was shining again but it was also 50 cm of fresh snow on the ground. Bearing in mind the previous week of storm winds blasting the snow cover. The fresh snow on top made it ideal for avalanches. The decision to not continue towards the summit was easy to make but it wasn’t fun. We had to give up our hopes for the summit of Kangchenjunga.
Standing at 6800 meters we had 1300 vertical meters of powder skiing ahead of us. But to make it down without getting avalanched we had to use all our experience and all the tricks in the book. There were some scary sections but mostly we could enjoy nice powder turns on one of the world highest mountains in the world. I am disappointed that we didn’t reach the summit but at the same time relieved that we made it down safely. We had a great experience in a beautiful environment and I will definitely return one day to make a new attempt on Kangchenjunga.
We are now packing our gear and getting ready for the week long hike back to civilization Looking forward to a Pizza in Kathmandu.
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
Moscow climbing worldcup 2008. Provisional programme
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition Update 5. Base Camp Life
At the moment we are stuck in base camp and all we can do is to wait for the weather to change. I’m getting a bit of déjà vu from last year on Dhaulagiri. Acclimatization climbs passed by without any problems but as soon as I‘m ready for the summit the weather changes totally. Last year it was a week of snowfall that stopped me, this year the jet stream has taken over the mountain. For about a week now it’s been around 90 km/h wind up on 8000 meters and that is no place for us to be in those conditions.
Instead we get to hang out in base camp. So how is life in the camp? My home is a big four man tent that I got all to myself. My down sleeping mattress is possible to convert into a nice and comfy chair. That’s where I spend most of my time. Either listening to music, reading a good book or just enjoying the amazing view from my tent. Our tent site is not very exciting. It’s made up of ice, sand and rocks and it’s very uneven. But the mountains surrounding our camp are very impressive. It’s an amphi-theatre of beautiful peaks, from “The Fake Jannu” in the north via Kangbacken, Yalung Kang, Kangchenjunga to Talung and Kabru in the south. They are all rising 2000 meters higher than we are. That view is hard to beat.
When I’m not in my tent I’m eating food. Jörgen and I have our own kitchen crew here in base camp. Buddhi, Kansha and Mon are making sure we are stuffed after breakfast, lunch and dinner. They are a good crew. Not only are they cooking good food but they are also laughing at our jokes (we paid extra for that).
Anyway after a week in base camp I’m getting restless and I’m hoping that the wind will calm down soon so that we can pack our gear and head up on the mountain again. This time we will try for the summit of Kangchenjunga (8586m).
Favorite Norwegian story:
Book that I'm reading: Tissot: The story of a watch company by Estelle Fallet
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
Referencing the president IFSC to Russia climbers before IFSC World Cup finals
It is always a pleasure to return to Russia, one of the cradle of our sport. We have seen so many international events organised in this country, that we feel at home. I also remember years ago, when we were experiencing hard times, but Russia, together with Italy, guaranteed the basis for the future development and the today strengths. Thanks Climbing Federation of Russia!
This year Moscow hosts two IFSC World Cup finals, speed and bouldering, both will be a success, we are sure, and the occasion to celebrate our athletes, coming from all over the world.
The IFSC Paraclimbing Cup is also part of the event. For the IFSC this is an important step forward to show the potentiality of our sport, a little contribution to make a better world.
Let’s climb the world together!
Marco Maria Scolaris
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition - Update 4. Skiing at last
Back in base camp again after a second acclimatization climb on Kangchenjunga. This time it took us only eight hours, instead of four days, to climb the 1000 vertical meters up to Camp 1 at 6250 meters. Being better acclimatized and having a trail to follow makes a big difference.
The weather has been identical to last week. We've had sunshine in the morning and clouds and snowfall in the afternoon. We are happy that we have marked the route with willow wands (bamboo sticks), that way we could easily find the way to C1 even if it was bad visibility almost half the way up there.
The route from "The Hump" (C1) up to "The Great Shelf" (C2) goes down for about a hundred meters then up what we call "The Second Glacier", a steep snow slope with lots of Seracs and Crevasses. Very similar to "The First Glacier" that goes up to C1.
Being a bit lazy and too comfortable in our sleeping bags we were not very quick out of the tent in the mornings. That way we didn't get far before clouds and snowfall stopped us at lunchtime. To our defense: we can feel the winter coming and the nights are getting colder ). With this pace it took us three days from C1 to 6950 meters (almost "The Great Shelf") where we found a nice ridge to set camp on.
At this moment the weather changed and it got very windy. According to Meteotest, that are doing our weather forecasts, the wind was 90 km/h at 8000 meters. Maybe a bit less where we were, but still enough. After a stormy night and when the wind didn't decline the next day we decided to return to BC.
After four days of uphill it was then time for skiing. It felt good to step into the bindings after a long summer and a lot of uphill on this trip. "The Second Glacier" is a nice slope for skiing. It has everything from low angle traverses to 50 degrees sections. Unfortunately the snow wasn't great this time but the scenery made up for that. Anyway, skiing on the slopes of Kangchenjunga was a special feeling.
Both Jörgen and I are in good mood and are acclimatizing well. We are now ready for the summit push and as soon as we get a weather forecast giving us four days of nice weather we will go for it.
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition Update 3. Route to Camp 1!
Climbing an 8000-meter peak is a time consuming project. Not only can it be a long and demanding approach to the foot of the mountain but you also need to spend weeks to get used to the altitude (acclimatize) to be able to climb the mountain. In total Jörgen and I are spending two month to be able to climb and ski on Kangchenjunga.
This Autumn Jörgen and I are the only climbers on the south side of Kangchenjunga. Normally the base camps on the 8000ers are crowded with climbers and on the mountain there are fixed ropes all along the routes. Being alone is great, it gives a more adventurous touch to it. We get to go up on the mountain all by ourselves to search and find a nice and safe route to climb (and ski). I can almost imagine what it was like for the British climbers that first climbed Kangchenjunga in 1955.
From our base camp at 5100 meters we have about 3500 meters up to the summit of the mountain and we will use three camps on the way. During the last four days Jörgen and I have been working our way up to our first camp. It is located at about 6200 meters on a ridge that was named &ldquoThe Hump&rdquo by the first ascensionists. The route goes on a fairly steep glacier that is cracked up by crevasses (cracks) and seracs (ice walls) that we have to navigate around. The routefinding was a bit tricky and the weather didn&rsquot cooperate with us either. Each day it was clear and sunny in the morning but after a only few hours clouds pulled in and it started snowing. Needing good visibility to move higher up we could only manage to ascend a few hundred meters a day. We spent one night at camp one before we returned to base camp. Four days up, three hours down.
Having a good route up to C1 and the fact that Jörgen and I seem to acclimatize well we are getting good confidence for the future. At the moment we are resting in base camp before we are heading up the mountain to continue our acclimatization and trying to figure out the route to Camp 2 at 7000 meters. More news when we are back from C2.
Base Camp: Lat N 27° 40&rsquo 24&rdquo
Lon E 88° 05&rsquo 43&rdquo
Altitude: 5100 meters
Warmest temp: +36°C
Coldest temp: -11°C
For more info about Fredrik and Jörgen check out their websites:www.fredrikericsson.com and www.jorgenaamot.no
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition Update 2: Base Camp at last!
Finally we have reached the Kangchenjunga Base Camp and it was not a walk in the park to get there. We were hoping for eight days of nice walking in the hills and mountains of eastern Nepal. Now 14 days later I know that the Kangchenjunga base camp trek is a bit more complicated than that.
First we were strolling in the sun along rice fields and banana plantations. Then came the Jungle with the leeches. The days got longer and the rainfalls got more frequent. As we moved up to higher altitude the weather and the terrain got nicer. Once in a while I even got a glimpse of a snow capped mountain. Our mood got better but that didn’t stop Jorgen from catching a cold. He got a sore throat and a bad cough that kept him a wake most of the night. To get rid of the cough Jorgen decided to stay a few days in the camp in Tseram (3700m) while the rest of the crew continued. During the trek we had about 20 porters that helped us carry our gear and food. When we came up to the Yalung Glacier that leads up to Kangchenjunga, about half of them didn’t want to continue. With only half the men it took us two days to travel the distance of a normal day. If that wasn’t enough, then came the snow. In one day we got 20 cm snow and that made the rest of the porters give up on us as well. Even though it gave us some problems I totally understand them. Walking on this glacier is no fun at all and 20 cm of snow doesn’t make it more exciting. It’s a mix of sand, rocks and ice and always up or down. Not a single flat spot. The gear the porters show up in is better suited for a sunny day on the beach than on a snowy glacier. I’m impressed that they made it as far as they did. Fortunate for us we were not far from base camp. Jorgen got well and caught up with us and together with our cooking crew: Buddhi, Kansha and Mon we could move up to Kangchenjunga Base Camp.
It feels great to be here at the foot of Kangchenjunga and the view of the beautiful mountains makes the long trek all worthwhile. After 14 days in the jungle and on the moraine Jorgen and I are getting very excited to take out the skis and head up to the snow.
For more info about Fredrik and Jorgen check out their websites:
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
Kangchenjunga Ski Expedition: The Adventure has begun
The Adventure has begun. Jorgen and I are now on the trek towards Kangchenjunga base camp. Four days have passed and four days to go to reach camp.
For more info about Fredrik and Jörgen check out their websites:
Fredrik’s sponsors: Dynastar, Osprey, Tierra, Hestra, Adidas Eyewear and Grivel Supporters: Tissot, Giro, DHL, Exped, Loben Expeditions and Jamtport
Source: Fredrik Ericsson.
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All nominees are assembled. In some minutes the hanging committee opens representation of the projects - the most important alpine achievements over the past year.
In the evening just past midnight (Moscow time) the Winners will be announced.
Check out on the Mountain.RU: NOMINEES PIOLET D'OR 2004
Our climb was rather uneasy - the route appeared very long and difficult. We had to haul a lot of gear as the route includes practically all elements: difficult rock-climbing, AID-climbing, ice and snow climbing. We did our best and showed a good result - for the first day we climbed the ice-fall, made 11 pitches up to the Col and 18 pitches after it and stop to spend the night sitting on a small ledge under the traverse. It was cold but according to the Patagonian measures rather tolerable as it could be much worse. Since the morning we quickly traversed and met a great company of British climbers descending to base camp after four day-climbing the route. They were impressed very much at our technique and speed of climb, and later, on the party they invited us to arrive in UÊ on annual international forum. In the same place we met Slovenian familiar girls Tanya and Monica that had luck this time: they found courage to return after a week-old failure and summited after a three-day climb.
After the traverse we made four pitches more. The sun was already shining with all his might. It was the 4-th day of ideal sun weather. We prayed on good weather and we had it. However it brought us the main problem. Under the sun's rays the summit ice mushroom, hanging above a vertical headwall, began to thaw and crumble. When we got under it, the collapse of ice-blocks drew to a head. Every pitch more and more ice fell from above. Making the 4-th pitch we had to shelter from the ice bombardment with our backpacks for some minutes and to take advantage of a 30-second break to climb some meters more. It became too dangerous. And we decided that living is high and bailed being overpowered by nature. And it was not for nothing. Traversing back and being already in safe place we saw a great ice collapse falling on our route and sweeping away everything on the way. Really, we realized that the danger was over.
Slovene girls descended this dangerous dihedral before us, but they were not such lucky - Monica was rather seriously injured and fractured rib. But all the same, they were very pleased indeed.
For the same reason this day Dean Potter did not manage to summit Torre Egger, Thomas Huber bailed too, the Austrians Toni and Marcus stop climbing Cerro Torre via Maestri -Egger route. Too good weather appeared good-for-nothing for climb in Patagonia.
Now we are reviving in Chalten and plan to leave on Fitz Roy to climb the American route. This time the weather is bad, but according weather forecast we will have a weather window on Monday. And on Monday we will leave Polish camp site at the foot of Fitz Roy. We have no enough time, in a week we have to leave back. So if they do not prove the weather window, we will not climb at all. It will not be easy to get under the route: we have to go through rather dangerous place - a couloir between Fitz Roy and Poincenot with hanging above huge ice seracs. We will try to work quickly.
us of good luck.
At night there was a nasty turn in the weather indeed, however the next day it improved again and we moved forward to Norwegian-camp at the foot of Cerro Torre. Having humped our heavy backpacks (about 40kg each) we made good time crossing 10 km onto a huge glacier, moraines and loose talus for 11 hours. Well, later we were requited for our uneasy trek.
A good company consisting of Dean Potter and his wife, Thomas Huber, climbers from Austria and Slovenia met us at Norwegos (Norwegian camp). Dean, his wife Stephanie and Thomas told that the Austrians first and they after them were going to start at midnight. And Dean really wanted to b.a.s.e.-jump from Cerro Torre summit.
Towards evening a Slovene two-woman team returned from ascent to the base camp. Monica and Tanya on hearsay were the first female team summited Fitzroy. They were very pleased and cheerful as they returned safe and sound. The day before (right when we were admiring clouds in Bridwell) they got into a violent storm. They did not have even waterproof gloves and their descent was rather difficult. In spite of the fact that they did not climb the last 4 pitches up to the top and bailed their mood was wonderful. Really everybody here are enamoured of climbing in itself. It does not matter if you manage to summit or not.
Having spent the white night under stones at Norwegos we moved further. Under the plan we had to climb towards the Col where to spend the night. But on our way we were informed on a satellite phone about bad weather forecast for the nearest 3 days. It seemed to be the truth because since the morning the summit was tightened with dark clouds with lightning flashed in. Thus everywhere except for Cerro Torre the weather was good. Fitzroy (just in 3 km) was absolutely clear of cloud. We dropped the backpacks and went further with light baggage - to get limbered up and look at the route condition. On our way we met the Slovenes who bailed their climb due to the bad weather and then Dean Potter and Thomas Huber. They did not want to ask for trouble too climbing through bad weather. Thomas appeared a very pleasant guy, smiling and thanking a lot when we suggested them to throw off the rope for rappelling.
The ice-fall leading to the rocks under the Col was strongly softened under the bright sun. Getting over a bergschrund, we had to climb a hanging wall covered with softened granulated snows. Tools did not hold in general, even when having been hammered on the shaft, they went further deep under pressing. We moved trying to find slices of firm ice, in size of a coin. Probably, the summit ice mush-room is in the same condition. But, as people speak "it's possible".
As the result we climbed halfway up to the col. Rocks were wet with ice sites in places and we climbed in crampons. When small avalanches began to collapse we gave up and descended right up to Bridwell-camp.
Now we are in Chalten attached ourselves to an excellent company: Leo Houlding and Kevin Thaw, Thomas Huber singing his songs to a guitar, Dean, cheerful guys from Slovenia and a lot of others. Yesterday we had a good party in our camping singing Russian songs on happy three voices to a guitar too.
Leo and Kevin just summited Fitzroy, Cazarotto route (North ridge). They had expected to climb the route for one day (under the description it's difficultly no more than 6b, and the guys are the real experienced climbers of 8-graded lines). However the route appeared very complex. They had to spend 2 cold nights on the wall without sleeping bags and a stove, meal and water. They were heated putting on backpacks on a head. After they descended Leo was sleeping for two days and then was drinking nonstop one day more. Now he is as sober as a judge, and they'll leave tomorrow for the next climb: this time it is El Mocho turn.
Dean and Stephanie yesterday descended to Bridwell and tomorrow are going to Norwegos. They want to try to summit Cerro Torre all the same. We'll leave tomorrow too. We decided to try to start directly from Norwegos in alpine style not to bivy at the Col. It would be hard. All the route includes about 40 pitches. We'll start at night on Monday. We have a good forecast on Monday - Tuesday, but on Wednesday the weather will start to spoil.
We'd like to hug tight all of you,
Tomorrow we will climb hardly upper and spend the night on a shoulder's bergschrund there. Thomas Huber and Dean Potter plan to start climbing in 2 hours and ascend all the night, i.e. tomorrow to reach the top and then Dean Potter wants to make a b.a.s.e.-jump right from the summit.
That is all there is to it for today.
And in Buenos Aires the real summer holds. They are dancing tango in the streets, beggars and paperboys are passing to and fro. The day is sweaty. Tomorrow we take off for El Calafate.
We'd like to hold you in our arms.
Today we arrived from Buenos Aires in El Calafate. Cerro Torre and Fitzroy were visible from the plane. The sky is grotesque here. Low torn clouds, absolutely flat, bear heavily on your mind.
There was only one terrible tent and we had to buy it unconscious of how to use it. But there was no other alternative. And we bought a cool newest down sleeping bag in weight of 700g.
Tomorrow at 7 a.m. we leave in Chalten by bus. This journey will take us for 5 hours.
Alxander, Leonid, Olga.
In the Super Final in Valle di Daone the Austrian and German beat Herbert Klammer from Italy and Natalia Koulikova from Russia.
Simon Wandeler from Switzerland and Jenny Lavarda from Italy placed third.
For full news reports and a great photo gallery by Giulio Malfer, please visit: http://www.daoneicemaster.it/
Such fast ascent's ending appeared unexpected for a lot of fans. We were adjusted for waiting for good news for some days. As it turned out during communication Kodar-Krasnoyarsk Nikolay omitted mention of the bottom 4-5 pitches of an abrupt snow-ice couloir they had climbed. Thus, all the route is really of 22 pitches, extent of its wall part - 17 pitches.
All the plans have been completely accomplished. The team prepares for returning. Term of return depends on helicopter's availability in Taksimo and good weather.
We congratulate and wait for the winners!
We decided not to take off the fixed rope for extreme descent in case of bad weather. Today is negative 34, but a thermometer has already registered -38 and-40 degrees centigrade. The wall is very cold and all ice-covered due to its exposition: within all the day any stream of sun does not reach its slopes. Large monolithic blocks, corners, chimneys are characteristic parameters of wall's terrain structure. It's hard to organize a safe belay. We use sky-hooks to climb very firm granite plates, but it's really difficult. Steepness is up to 80 degrees in places, but the top part of the route seems more abrupt on the average.
Everything is lovely in the base camp. The warmed tent Rock Pillars is worth its keep. When it's made up the fire in it we have about +20 inside. Under the wall we dug a good cave for 6 people. The area is very interesting, wild: there is not any local habitation, hunting shelters or man's traces. Loginov and Sikilinda climbed a beautiful winter 5B-graded route on the next (left) mountain spending 2 days for fixing the rope and one day for the summit push. The other free members of our expedition climbed less complex routes 1B- and 2A-graded.
We keep shootings a film about our expedition. In spite of the fact that the camera is frequently freezing, we have already shot an hour and a half. Misha Vershinin actively works. Now it's full of the moon, and Mike is shooting even in the moonlight. Unfortunately, there is no opportunity to send photos. And we can only receive SMS-messages but not send them.
Keep in touch with us!
In ice-climbing organizers do not want to peddle cups: if they carry out something it will be a championship. The results of World Championship-2005 were summed up: Austrian Hari Berger and Petra Muller from Switzerland won Difficulty and Evgeny Kryvosheytsev from Ukraine and Natalia Kulikova from Russia were the first in speed.
1 BERGER Hari (Austria)
1 MULLER Petra (Switzerland)
1 KRYVOSHEYTSEV Evgeny (Ukraine)
1 KOULIKOVA Natalia
Hari Berger. Author: Giulio Malfer,
Master of Sport of International Grade
The last climber who was called as "The best climber of the USSR" (1990 and 1991) just before USSR's disintegration.
1990 - won the USSR championship in a technical class (Fanskie mountain) having ascended 8 summits for 13 days (six 5B-graded routes and two 6À).
1991 - the USSR championship, a rocky class, Karavshin gorge of the Turkestansky ridge. The team of Alexander Klenov, Sergey Borisov, Michael Bruk, Igor Bugachevsky, Michael Donskikh, Alexander Solodovnikov summited peaks "Slesova", "Asan" and won "the gold".
1991 - the USSR championship, a technical class, Aksu gorge of the Turkestansky ridge. The team of Sergey Borisov, Alexander Klenov, Michael Brook, Michael Donskikh, Alexander Kolesov, Alexander Limarenko summited Admiralteets, Iskander, A.Blok and won "the gold".
2002 - Everest via Northern col.
The day before we start our descent adventure we lost our Kitchenboy Chiring, who went to ABC to take down the last things….. In the evening he didn’t come back to BC and we was very worry…. All together we went out in the darkness and the storm, looking for him. We thought about the worst, because the temperature was very low and it had snow a lot. Luckily Chiring organised by himself one bivac 2 ours far from BC, when he understood the difficulty of the situation. But we pasted a very bad night….
The they after we Chiring arrived in BC and we all were very happy to see him. But one other dramatic adventure was starting. At 12:30 we started from BC at 5200 meters to Nyalam at 3750 and 25 km far. Nobody from us thought, that only after some ours we would find storm, - 30 degree, fog and snow sometimes till our waist!!! We needed 14 ours without stop, fighting with the elements and in the darkness, before we arrived with totally cold in Nyalam. My small finger is black and all the other fingers I have only partially sensibility. The others are only tired from the exhausting work and some small frostbite in the face (also I have….). More than one time we finished in the icy water from the river, because he was covert by thin ice and snow, that broken when we passed over. Other times the snow was so deep and powdery near to impossible to go on. At 3:30 Peking time Piotr and I reached the place where we slept when we did go up. The others came a little later and at last Jan after some ours. I think our looks were not so nice, because the people observed us long…..
The day after we droved by the jeep to Zangmu, the boarder to Nepal. There we take showers and sauna for 3 ours non-stop!!!
Today we arrived at Kathmandu. On more shower and now we are preparing to go out from our Hotel and I want to eat a big beef and make party for be back to the normality.
P.S. Today, the 20th of January the CTMA certificated our summit with the sentence “first winter Summit” as the first winter summit from Shisha Pangma, maked by Simone Moro ITA and Piotr Morawski POL at the 14th of Januray
On January 19 at Parallel Slalom Denis became only 13th and Svetlana - 12th. The world championship is carried out twice a year.
And against rather sad results of Russian skiers in technical sports (slalom, giant slalom) success of our snowboarding team is impressing.
Ines Papert won Difficulty event with the best time 19:53 and thousand spectators could enjoy her sending the most complicated mixed line in the artificial ice canyon. She was the unique women made TOP - really that was not a sensation, but that fact that her time was the best by the end of the competitions went through like a packet of salts! A cool Canadian athlete Will Gadd yielded this fragile German girl almost for two minutes, and Harry Berger from Austria - much more than that. It is fair to say that Will Gadd sent a final line without "Heelhooks" manner and that took much more time to send. Well, this result and sending the route of "Vertical Limit" are confirmed Ines's high class and unconditional leadership among all the masters of frozen water.
The tenth annual festival "Events in Ouary" (Salt Lake City, Utha) became unqualified success of its Organizers, some thousand spectators were obvious confirmation to that. The conditions for ice-climbing in Ouary canyon were simply phenomenally good. And slide shows and a fashion parade of exclusive sports mark "Arc'teryx" completed even without that interesting evening programs.
Ines's result is really unique.
The Chief of Black Diamond European branch said: "Ines is very cool. I do not know any woman in athletic sports in which a girl could become better, than the best man!"
Photo - www.bergsteigen.at
The Wall justifies our expectations: impressive, severe, tempting. It's very abrupt and has altitude difference not less than 1000m. We set a camp in 3 kilometers from the Wall. Woodland is insignificant there.
Today the part of our team went downwards the gorge for preparation of fire wood for the stove, and the others went to break trail to Wall's foot. Yesterday the temperature in Taksimo was negative 40, but in the gorge it is a little bit warmer.
Our greetings to everyone who is a fan of us!
14.01.2005 Our Expedition started.
Check out on the Mountain.RU: Kodar range, Czarsky Tron (Czar's Throne, 2500) New Route, 6B, 1000 meters SW wall
One of these days the guys come back, but I want to be late a little and stay here to take a walk. Our greetings to all of you.
This is first winter ascent on Shisha Pangma in history (callendar winter started 21st December) and we can truly say that in typical winter conditions (strong wind, no snow, a lot of ice). Now only six 8000 meters peaks are waiting for its first winter ascents...
Simone and Piotr
It is worthwhile to say that Nick and Stuart sent the route clean, i.e. free climbed. Nick already tried the route last year but fell and broke his anklebone, and this year he returned there with MacAleese to have luck again on 13-pitch mixed route. All the route took them four days, from which two full days they were climbing.
Simone and Piotr
The wind is still blowing with terrible force. But we'd like to reach the col (about 7300) and hope to set up Camp 2 behind the col. Today, during the way to the ABC we were watching a wind smoke on the summit ridge, and we didn't want even to think what was up there...
Also the south wall of Shisha has totally changed character comparing to that 2 weeks ago: instead of snow we could see big fields of pure ice!
We are in a good physical condition and motivation is high... In any case we will follow his advise and Piotr and I will go tomorrow "only" to try to finish to fix all the route till the ridge at 7300 and fix C2. Than we will be back in base camp waiting for good news from Karl and his perfect forecast.
Yesterday they get a really hard job and difficult conditions and this morning was difficult to take decision to left the sleeping bags and start for the descent to ABC and BC. Jan also started to come down from ABC to BC and this evening we will be all together here at 5200 meter of Base Camp. Tomorrow we will take decision and strategies for the next important week....
Yesterday we finished to repair one of the 3 tends we get in ABC that had been seriously broken from the big hungry birds. The birds were looking for food and brake all the tends, without find any food (we left especially in a plastic drum). Maybe the damage is a revenge....?
Tomorrow they will try to carry higher....
Cross the finger for us.... The next 1/2 weeks will be extremely important for
Darek and Jacek were working all the day above the C1 (6550
m). They probably reached 6800 m, foot of the last few hundreds meters of couloir.
Our route occured longer than we expected and with ropes we already have up, it will be difficult to reach the col. But we will do our best.
Our generator stopped to work and "get frostbite". Piotr and Jan today made a surgery operation and they obtain to get 12 volt power from it. Together my solar pannel we should continue to give enough energy to our camp...
Karl Gabl (our Austrian Guru for the weahter forecast) said to be patient and to call him Monday in Innsbruck. We will have our next weather forecast and we hope to have good news...
We wish again a nice 2005 full of smiling moments...
Last night the wind and the cold had been a good test for our capacities. The bad weather should persist for the next 3/4 days and we will take a good rest and "charge our motivations and determination". Tonight we will celebrate the new year and we wish to all of you a 2005 in health and without any polemic...
Have a nice 2005!! and I hope you will continue to follow the adventures from me and my friends also in 2005.
Tomorrow we'd like to work higher. Now the weather is quite good, a lot of clouds, sometimes sun and the wind is shaking our tent, but not blowing us out from the wall.
Today we worked to fix all the tends of base camp and fix them with ropes and big stones to avoid that wind brake them during next storms. Tonight we will celebrate our Christmas and Jan prepared a nice Christmas tree in the dining tend. Tomorrow we probably go to ABC and back to BC, to carry some equipment.
We wish all of you our greetings and Marry Christmas!!!
Simone, Jan, Darek, Piotr, Jacek
in Nyalam today. We left yesterday because today there was supposed to be
a strike with numerous blockades on the street from Kathmandu to the border. Unfortunately,
although we left yesterday we still had problems half an hour before Kodhari (on
the border of Nepal and China). A military street blockade with a barbed wire
and machine gunners lined up forced us to wait until the next day to continue.
We were able to sleep in a small private house and eat in a hut for the Nepalese.
A few days ago, before returning to Nepal, he gave Lafaille the certificate which proves his climb to the peak at 14:00 on December 11th, but he did not write "WINTER EXPEDITION" even though the Frenchman insisted he write it because he didn't consider it a winter climb. Nawang says that he has 10 years of expedition experience in all 4 seasons and Lafaille's climb was not to be registered with the TMA as a "WINTER EXPEDITION" but as "LATE AUTUMN." Anyone can contact Nawang at the TMA in order to confirm this.
The French alpinist got his Chinese Visa extended because
he only intended to stay 30 days and as he entered Tibet and started the expedition
before December 1st, he acted with the normal autumn permission. With all this
news and clarification, added to the scientific one of the world season calendar
which says that winter starts the 21st of December, we must consider that Shisha
Pangma has never been conquered in winter. Now it's up to us to see if this climb
Translation by Jonathan Etes
Having stayed for some days in only 150 meters up to the summit waiting for the weather window, the guys began their sad descent.
Today we navigated in internet to see how is going with the news about the JC Lafaille climb on Shisha. With huge surprise we saw the photo of the "new line" of JC, because we discovered that 50% of that route is our route of last winter (green line)!!!!! We have photos and film of that line we made last December and January (till the point where the route cross the number 5 and 6). We didn't considered that part as new because the aim of the Spanish route we climbed was to follow the big coloir from the base of the wall to the summit, and our line had been only the physiological variant in order to the ice and weather conditions. In any case we sent many photos already one years ago to my web site and the most important world web site and our line and story should be well known.
any case we would like to congratulate JC Lafaille for the good climb and the
success. Really! We also would like to congratulate him for the tactics.....
Simone, Darek, Piotr
It is the first successful ascent on Shishapangma (8047m) done solo and without supplementary oxygen.
The information is provided by Katia Lafaille, France, www.jclafaille.com
Only at base camp we will decide the route we will attempt. We want to see directly the snow condition of the face and the weather forecast we will have from Innsbruck from my personal friend Karl Gabl.
Herewith I'm sending you the postcard I prepared for our expedition. I dind't received yet the cable but I took free all next week to realize all the procedure and training with iPAQ and Contact 3.0. Keep in touch
See all the results http://www.digitalrock.de
UIAA Climbing-Worldcup 2004
Difficulty. The current rating
All results http://digitalrock.de
The leaders of Big Cup Mrazek and Sarkany. Chabot and Eiter are the second.
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