Summer 2013 | K2, Nanga Parbat, Broad Peak and Gasherbrum Teams Arrive

From Islamabad the basecamps of remote Karakoram and Himalayan peaks can be reached either by Skardu and Gilgit bound flights, or by a lengthy bus ride on renowned Karakoram Highway. Currently majority of teams have either started the aforementioned journey or are ready to go. Diamir side of Nanga Parbat and Gasherbrums in Karakoram are popular destinations this season.

Headed by Kitamura Seiichi, eight member Japanese team flew to Islamabad on June 4th. After fulfilling the routine procedures in Pakistani capital, they were scheduled to depart for Skardu today. The team is hoping to reach BC by June 23rd and after acclimatization, launch the summit bid in first week of August. But obviously, this is highly dependent upon proceedings of these two months and the weather conditions. Four HAPs (high altitude porters) from Pakistan would also join the Japenese expeditions.

International team of Kiwi, Australian, Nepalese and Greek climbers would presumably climb Broad Peak before K2 whereas members of third group are yet to reach Pakistan. Basque climber Alex Txikon who summited his 10th eight-thousander this spring, will be part of the K2 team. Another Lhotse summiteer Ferran Latorre from Catalonia would also be in Karakoram this summer. He would attempt K2 or one of Gasherbrums; maybe both. Their Mexican teammate Benjamin Salazar would fly to Pakistan by mid of June. Whereas two members of this expedition Ernestas Marksaitis and Gabriel Filippi are already in Pakistan as a part of International Nanga Parbat Expedition. It’s not known whether they would be able to join K2 team, as well.
K2; Image source

Nanga Parbat
Nanga Parbat’s Diamir BC would be a busy area this season. Apparently around 50 climbers would be trying to scale Nanga Parbat from Diamir side via Kinshofer route. Three Pakistanis Karim, Naseer and Sher have already established C1 and are now trying to reach C2. Pakistani climbers are working as an independent team.

International Expedition led by Polish Aleksandra Dzik left Islamabad on 4th June and are currently trekking to Diamir BC. They should be reaching there tomorrow. The team consists of climbers from eight countries.

Ukrainian International Expedition led by Igor Sviergun flew to Islamabad on June 6th. The expedition of Kharkov mountaineering club also includes two members from Georgia and two from Slovakia.

Three members Polish team of Boguslaw Magrel, Wlodek Kierus and Adam Stadnik arrived in Islamabad yesterday. They too would be moving to Diamir BC to climb via standard route.

Turkish Tunc Findik was also getting ready for Nanga Parbat and had a plan to reach Islamabad today (June 8th). As of now, it’s not confirmed whether his other partners would also be climbing Nanga Parbat or there is a change in plans.

This spring, Romanians Cosmin Andron and Cristina Pogacean made the first ascent of Ghandarbha Chuli (6,248m), a peak in Annapurna Sanctuary. Being in the proximity of famous sacred mountain Macchapuchhare (6,993m), locals didn’t welcome the idea of Ghandarbha Chuli climb but allowed them to proceed, nonetheless. They reached the summit on May 6th. Now the two Romanians would be attempting Nanga Parbat. They would be joined by Felicia Enache and Lukin Evgeni. Route details and climbing schedule of the four are not known yet.

Another Romanian team will be trying to scale Nanga Parbat from Rupal side. Five members team reached Islamabad on Thursday and are travelling to Chilas today. They are apparently the only team on Rupal side and would be climbing via Schell’s route.

 Nanga Parbat. Diamir Face. Kinshofer Route
Routes on Nanga Parbat, Diamir Face. (Kinshofer in red.)

Broad Peak
Led by Robert Hochreiter, the expedition with members from Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Netherlands are currently trekking to Broad Peak BC. As per last communication, they were in Askole on 6th June.

Austrian Broad Peak team arrived in Islamabad on 2nd June and reached Skardu after a tiring 32 hour road trip. Their plan was to start the seven days trek to BC, yesterday.
Landslide on KKH; Photo: Haselsteiner Michael


Polish Artur Hajzer and Marcin Kaczkan were scheduled to fly to Pakistan today. Their target is to climb GI and GII via standard routes, with minimum resources. As a secondary objective, they would also evaluate the possibility of a summit-to-summit ‘full traverse’ of GI and GII. Since Reinhold Messner’s double-header, the feat has been repeated at several occasions but ‘full traverse’ via Gasherbrum Col (6400m) is yet to be done. While the government funding of Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering project has been temporarily suspended due to ongoing investigations on winter Broad Peak tragedy, the climb is supported by expedition sponsors and funds of Polish Mountaineering Association (PZA).

Carlos Garranzo climbed Everest in 2006 and would try to scale GII, this season. A firefighter by profession, the Spanish climber would be climbing ‘alone’, albeit there would be more than 70 climbers in the region during this period. Garranzo flew to Pakistan, yesterday and is hoping to reach BC by June 23rd.

If everything went as per schedule, Mexican couple Badia and Mauricio Bonilla would be in Islamabad by now. They started the journey on June 6th. Both Badia and Mauricio have climbed 6 eight-thousanders together and turned back from Shishapangma Central in autumn 2002.

Six members Taiwanese team will fly to Islamabad on June 17th, hoping to become the first Taiwanese group to scale GII, while the Belgian Expedition will start after third week of June.

Frequent updates appear in Tweet Box on right side of this blog and Twitter, as season progresses.
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