Summer 2015 | First Summit Bids of the Season on GII and GI

After a few days of intermittent weather, the conditions in Karakoram have improved. Teams on Gasherbrums don’t want to let this summit window go away and have already left Base Camps. GII summit bid will be led by Kobler & Partner expedition whose guides and Sherpa have already fixed the route till C3 (7000m). There are no commercial teams on GI and climbers will jointly open the route from C2 (6430m) to C3 (ca 7000m). Depending upon weather and mountain conditions, the climbers may return to BC or go for the summit from C3.
GI at sunrise, as seen from BC; Source

Gasherbrum I
GI climbers sat together on July 12th to finalize the summit-bid plans. Several small independent teams will be collaborating for route fixing and summit push on the mountain.

Yannick Graziani left Base Camp yesterday and reached C1 ahead of others. Other GI climbers were planning to climb directly to C2, today. They will jointly work on route opening above C2.

“We will equip the Japanese Couloir, which is the most technical part of the climb. It is a poorly defined corridor, northwest orientation, about 700m vertical, shoulder culminating in a place where the last camp is set, which can be located more or less high according to convenience, but oscillates between 7000 and 7200 meters. From this camp summit-bid is launched,” explains Ferran Latorre. However, summit-bid is not guaranteed. The route fixing to C3 may take a lot of energy and they may not have enough time for summit push before weather window closes.

“We are planning on bringing everything we will need for a summit bid in case the weather decides to cooperate and we have sufficient energy after fixing the route from Camp II to Camp III in the Japanese Couloir,” says American climber Nick Rice.

Four-member Taiwanese team was also expected to have left for C2, this morning. Summit-push will most likely be launched either on Thursday and Friday.
GI Japanese Couloir; Source

Gasherbrum II
Having already tagged C3 and spent multiple nights in C2, GII teams are more ready for summit-bid. First group of climbers left Base Camp yesterday. Others are going up today. Climbers are hoping to reach the top on Thursday.
GII C2 and the route to C3; Source

The leading group (Ngima Chhiring Lama, NgaDorchi Sherpa, Robert Gunther Herz, Laura Castillo, Yuri Contreras and Peter Schatzl) reached C1 yesterday and is on the way to C2 now. They report that recent snow made the climb from BC to C1 challenging and time-consuming. Laura Castillo wrote that it took them almost 10hrs to cover the distance which usually takes around 5.5hrs. Around knee-deep snow has covered the tracks from previous trips.

Chilean team (Martin Gildemeister, Rafael Matte and Tomás Vial) and Polish lady Kinga Baranowska were planning to leave for C1, this morning.
GII Banana Ridge; Source
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