Latest news from K2-North-Pillar-Expedition
Yesterday evening, our four friends took the difficult decision to use today as a rest and fixing day. They spent a very cold night at 8000 m and this morning at 6:30 a.m. they started to fix some rope along the traverse into the Japanese Couloirs and further up this couloirs.
According to Gerlinde, they found lots of powder snow, which was covered by a crust and waist-deep in some places. Their progress was very slow and now – as I write these lines at 01:00p.m. – they have only covered about 150 – 180 vertical meters.
The weather is perfect – not one single cloud in the sky – and there is just a light breeze.
In the attached pictures you see Maxut, Vassiliy and Gerlinde climbing between the seracs on the right side of the couloirs. Darek cannot be seen in the photograph – he is about 50 m behind.
In case they start tomorrow morning, the trail will be broken, the rope will be fixed and the progress to their highpoint will be much quicker. They are hoping to find less snowdrifts and better conditions on the left side of the couloirs, which is much longer in the shade.
Let’s keep our fingers crossed – we all so wish that they can make it safely.
Update 22.08.2011 – 20:30 local time
After a long and exhausting ascent which was difficult due to deep snow Gerlinde, Maxut, Vassiliy and Darek decided to spend the night at their highest point at about 8,300m in a bivouac. They found a perfect bivouac place at the last serac in the Japanese Couloirs. They dug a platform for their tiny tent and are enjoying the last sunbeams inside, eating tomato soup. They are planning to leave at midnight tonight local time and are hoping that they will successfully climb the last 300m despite the difficult snow conditions.
The team at base camp as well as Gerlinde´s and Ralf’s home team