Summer 2015 | Broad Peak Summit Push Thwarted, K2 Climbing Season Threatened by Dangerous Climbing Conditions

Broad Peak summit-bid has been thwarted. Deep snow below Col, high wind and bad conditions forced climbers to abort the attempt and retreat to lower camps. They are on the way down to Base Camp. Himex Broad Peak climbers will go up on Sunday, to see if summit attempt is possible. GI and GII witnessed few ascents by smaller climbing teams yesterday, whereas K2 climbing season is seriously threatened by dangerous climbing conditions on mountain.

Friday’s Attempt on Broad Peak
While majority of climbers targeted Broad Peak summit on Saturday, few climber made an unsuccessful summit-bid on Friday. Leader of Somos Ecuador team Iván Vallejo says that they couldn’t reach summit due to terrible snow conditions. The ascent from C3 to Col at around 7900m, which usually takes 4.5hrs, consumed more than 10.5hrs. After evaluating that summit wasn’t reachable, the team decided to retreat to C3.

Juanito Oiarzabal and Alberto Zerain also went up from C3 yesterday. They spent a night at 7700m and were hoping to join the other climbers to summit. However, they all are coming down to Base Camp, now.

Summit Push Thwarted
Several climbers were expected to leave C3 for summit at around mid-night yesterday. However, bad weather and snow conditions thwarted the ascent and climbers are on the way back to Base Camp.

Billi Bierling (climbing with Himex team) messaged this afternoon, “all teams attempting Broad Peak abandoned due to too much snow below the col and strong winds on Saturday. Our Broad Peak team will give it a try. Will leave for C2 early on Sunday, then C3 and then we'll take it from there. Maybe we'll have a chance.”

Spanish climbing media is reporting that team of Oscar Cadiach, Juanito Oiarzabal and Alberto Zerain are back in Base Camp. Tunc Findik, who is member of Summit Climb team, wrote on Facebook that “Climbers are still on the way back. Some to Camp 2. Tunc has arrived at BC.”

No update is received from Polish ski team of Andrzej Bargiel and Dariusz Zaluski, however they may also be retreating to BC.
Broad Peak; (Photo: Adam Bielecki)

Dangerous Conditions on K2
Deep snow, rock falls, avalanches and soft snow conditions are a real threat to climbing season on K2. It may well be another summit-less season on the mountain. “The route between ABC and C1 is a sight to be seen: water streams running down alongside avalanche debris and rock fall. A gigantic boulder was seen rolling down all the way from C1. All the fixed lines between ABC and above appear to have been damaged and rendered unusable,” says Joe Ashkar who is part of Madison Mountaineering team.

Madison Mountaineering team’s Sherpa were on the way to C3, when lead Sherpa Kami was hit by falling rocks near C1. He suffered three bone fractures but is, fortunately, out of danger.

Due to dangerous conditions, K2 teams are cancelling their attempts. Swiss team has already abandoned the expedition. Billi Bierling says Russell has pulled the plug at K2 due to undue potential danger. Apparently, Hungarian duo and Seven Summits team will not be going for summit, as well.

“The forecast is showing bad weather for the next 7 days and we still don’t have fixed lines above C3. It’s very possible that we might not even get a chance for a Summit attempt this season,” Joe Ashkar posted yesterday.
Digging at K2 ABC. Source

Gasherbrum Summits
As reported yesterday, climbers were atop GI and GII. The international team of Ferran Latorre, Yannick Graziani, Tom Seidensticker and Muhammad Sadik (Sadik didn't summit) were back at C3 at around 11PM local time. The summit push from C3-to-C3 lasted for 21 hours. They are currently descending to C1.

Chilean climbers summited Gasherbum II. The team was later safely back at C3.
At GI summit; Source
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