Annapurna South Face Summit Push: Nobukazu Kuriki Heading Up the Wall

Carrying a bivouac tent and some food in his backpack, Japanese climber Nobukazu Kuriki forayed up the notorious Annapurna South Face, this morning. He has a camera with himself to capture the experience, but isn’t carrying GPS or other tech equipment to climb swiftly. “Will climb even with minimum food,” he wrote before departure.

While Annapurna climbers on North side enjoyed relatively better weather during summit push last week, strong wind kept thrashing Southside of mountain. Nobukazu Kuriki acclimatized on nearby peaks and made a trip to Advanced BC, before waiting out bad weather days in BC. He made a short trip to glacier on May 1st to evaluate conditions and launched summit push next day.

Together with fellow Sirdar and cook, Nobukazu Kuriki, reached ABC (5010m) on May 2nd. As per Japanese climber, crossing the fragile glacier consumed a lot of energy. He rested in ABC for a day, before entering the mountain face alone, this morning. He left ABC at around 4am, and was on the mountain wall by 7am. Kuriki’s progress is being observed/photographed from Base Camp.
Annapurna South side ABC; Source
Kuriki going up from ABC, this morning; Source
At the base of wall; Source
Progressing forward; Source

Annapurna South Face was attempted by a French expedition last autumn. The team could only reach 5800m before excessive rock fall forced them to abandon the summit-bid. In 2013, Ueli Steck completed a new route up the face in surreal 28hrs round trip time. Few days later, Ueli’s line of ascent was repeated in a marathon attempt by French alpinists Yannick Graziani and Stephane Benoist.
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