Spring 2013 | Dhaulagiri, Manaslu | Climbing On

Links to recent reports on Everest, Kangchenjunga and Lhotse & Makalu.
As of now, I am unaware of any expedition to Annapurna, whereas update on Shishapangma expeditions would follow this post.


Polish Expedition to Dhaulagiri - Spring 2013: Poles were amongst the first teams to reach Dhaulagiri BC, this season. After the initial reconnaissance and Puja, the team started the actual climb on 17th April. They gained almost 1200m from the BC and established C1 at 5800m. Next morning, they climbed further to 6200m and observed the route to C2 (at around 6800m). The route looked nice but they didn't have any plan to go up as their bodies need some acclimatization in thin air before going further up. Whole team returned to BC on 19th. As per last report published on 20th, the team was resting in BC.

Polish Mountaineering Association (PZA) arranges expeditions to different 8000er peaks in each season, with the basic objective being preparation for Winter Himalayan Climbing 2010-2015 project. The project focus on completion of First-Winter-Ascents of all Himalayan eight-thousanders. The ascent of Broad Peak (8051m) this winter was ninth pure Polish First-Winter-Ascent of 8000ers, while Polish climbers were also involved in Shishapangma's winter ascent. Poles, who are pioneers of winter altitude climbing, want to wrap-up the winter-firsts game by summiting Nanga Parbat (8125m) and K2 (8611m).

Polish/Italian Duo: Sharing logistics and BC with Polish national team is a Polish/Italian duo. Pawel Michalski (Pol) and Simone la Terra (ITA) are tough climbers who have summited four 8000ers each. They acclimatized on a nearby 6000er peak before starting Dhaulagiri climb. Pawel reported bad weather during their descent from C1 on 19th. Conditions haven't improved till 21st April and they were stuck in BC. Pawel thinks that after making one more acclimatization trip to 7000m, they would be ready for the Summit Push.

French Expedition to Dhaulagiri 2013: French team who reached BC on 12th, approximately at same time as Poles. But unfortunately, they suffered an early loss when one of the team members, Claude Labatut, had to abandon the climb due to Sciatic Nerve - issue that started developing during terrible bus ride. Claude was air-lifted from BC and would be heading home soon. Rest of the team is continuing the climb. They too reached C1 on 18th and climbed to C2 before returning to BC in bad weather. The team's progress on mountain is similar to that of Poles, which makes me believe that they are working collaboratively. Currently they are in BC while weather has improved. Team is planning to go to C1 tomorrow (25th) and spend a night there.
"Our expedition will be based on respect for the rights and the environment. No oxygen; No trace left on the mountain." say the French-men. After Claude's departure, team consists of Claire David, Frédéric Heymes and Arnaud Pasquer. Arnaud has already successfully Cho Oyu and Manaslu, and attempted virgin peak G-V(in Gasherbrum massif, Pakistan). Claire participated in several Himalayan expeditions in past decade with a couple of successful 8000er ascents. Frederic is a tough climber with one 8000er summit in pure style.

Catalans Dhaulagiri Expedition: Three Catalans have reached BC on 22nd April after two days of hellish bus ride and five days of trek. It has been snowing since their arrival at BC. Team's acclimatization and climbing should start once weather improves.
Juanjo Garra is a social worker and has climbed more than half of 8000ers. He is also a film-maker and author of three books. Although this would be first attempt of Enrique Osiel on an 8000er but he is in the world of the mountaineering since 20 years. He is co-founder of Earth Mountain Club and  member of Club Alpino Amadablan (CAAD). He has been working as a mountain guide, technical trainer and a rescuer. Third member, Manuel 'Lolo' Gonzalez is also a hardcore climber with experience of several 8000er expeditions. The team would probably climb via standard route.

Dhaulagiri-2013 396
On the way to Dhaulagiri; Photo:Juanjo

Amical Expedition to Dhaulagiri: German team of six climbers lead by Dominik Mueller reached Kathmandu on 19th April. Expedition is facilitated by Amical Alpin. Live map shows that team is currently trekking to Dhaulagiri BC.


Catalan Expedition to Manaslu 2013: Raul Corominas and Peter Herms reached Manaslu BC at 4830m very early in the season (on 4th April), witnessed more snow and no big crowd as anticipated. In fact they were all alone at BC. Without wasting any time, the duo started the climb on 5th, reaching 5400m before returning to BC. Next day, they established C1 at 5700m. After a couple of days of rest, they resumed the climb and reached 5950m; spent the following night in C1 hoping to climb further. But weather deteriorated and they returned to BC on 10th for Puja ceremony. The team hasn't shared any update since 14th April and we might assume that they're climbing above BC. As of now, they are the only team on Manaslu.
Neither Raul nor Peter climbed an 8000er before but has experience from other peaks outside Asia. Mountain guiding amongst one of Raul's jobs. Peter is a writer,  director and has produced several social documentaries in Africa. During this expedition, they will be making a 60 minutes documentary titled, "The men who wanted to climb a mountain over 8,000 meters".

Catalan team's blog header.

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