Information Of Shishapangma Expedition

Shishapangma is the highest peak entirely in Chinese territory, yet, strangely, it is the nearest eight-thousand to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, and the only one visible from the town itself. It was the last of the fourteen to be climbed, a result of travel restrictions imposed in Tibet during the ‘fifties’. On the first ascent in 1964, ten Chinese climbers led by Hsu Ching reached the summit by the North- West Face and North Ridge. This may seem a large summit team, until you consider that there were 206 expedition members in all, including scientists and base camp staff! Doors were not opened to non- Chinese parties until 1980 but in that year and 1981 another five ascents were completed, all of them following more or less the original route. it remains a popular expedition, with a high success rate, up what is probably the easiest eight- thousand. The Tibetan name Shishapangma translates as ‘the range (Shisha) above the grassy plain’, which is exactly how it looks when approached from the north. Part of this peak’s attraction is its accessibility: it is possible to drive with jeeps and Lorries to base camp at 5000m and from there yaks can be used to ferry loads right up to 5800m. Cho Oyu, a few hours’ drive south of Tingri, is similarly convenient and for this reason many expeditions to Tibet choose to climb both of these mountains in the same season. Once acclimatized on Cho-Oyu, it is not unknown to spend less than a week on Shishapangma and still manage an ascent.

The South Face is steep and not quite so accessible, though by most peaks’ standards the approach is short and kind. Traveling from Friendship Bridge on the Nepalese frontier, Nyalam is the first settlement on the Tibetan plateau that one reaches after a five – hour drive. It is from this dreary, dusty village, reminiscent of Spaghetti Westerns, that one starts the three- day walk up the Nyanang Phu Chu. The valley leads to a grassy base camp site at the far end of a boulder- strewn plateau above the north bank of the Nyanang Phu Glacier and directly opposite Pemthang Karpo Ri (6830m), one of the fine peaks on the Nepalese frontier. One advantage of climbing on this side of the mountain is that, instead of driving straight to 5000m, one starts walking in from around 3800m with a better chance to acclimatize. This was the approach followed on the sixth ascent of Shishapangma in 1982. The party organized by Nick Prescott was the first to climb the mountain in pure alpine- style, tackling a face which had only before been glimpsed from across the frontier, in Langtang. Before setting foot on Shishapangma the three lead climbers, Doug Scott, Alex MacIntyre and Roger Baxter-Jones, made the first ascent over three days of Pungpa Ri, 7,445m by its south-west couloirs ridge (45degree ice and grade IV), cannily acclimatizing and getting a close look at their projected descent route from Shishapangma. That was in mid-May. Then on the 28th after three bivouacs on the south Face, they reached the summit of Shihapangma. Their route takes a fairly direct line to reach broad snowy couloirs which emerges just east of the summit. For the most part on snow and ice, there is one section of quite hard mixed (Scottish 4) to reach the base of the final “Peapod”. Although the overall angle of the face is not as steep as the team had expected, their route was quite sustained, with few obvious bivouac sites. Four twenty-eight year old MacIntyre, who died later that year descending the South Face of Annapurna this route and his book co-authored with Doug Scott, The Shishapangma Expedition, will serve as a fitting memorial. He was a brilliant alpinist with a sharp mind, whose ideas and inventiveness led and inspired others – a cult figure of modern alpinism.

MacIntyre, achieved some of his greatest climbs, such as the south Face of Changabang and the East Face of Dhaulagiri, with the equally single minded pole, Wojciech Kurtyka, and it was Kurtyka who eight years later pioneered another route on the south Face of Shishapangma. The line he completed with the Swiss pair Jean Troillet and Erhard Loretan takes a similar gully to the Peapod on the 1982 route but on the left (west) side of the Main Summit. Entirely on snow and ice never steeper than 55 degree, this route provides the shortest and quickest climb to the summit of any eight thousand. The line heads for the col between the west and Central summits, but it is best to break out right 200m beneath the col, taking a subsidiary couloirs direct to the Central summit. On the first ascent Loretan and Troillet, in characteristic fashion, climbed the face at night carrying no bivouac equipment and emerging on the summit ridge at dawn. Kurtyka also carried no equipment but was slower and decided to bivouac on the descent at 7800m. The night was ‘pleasantly warm’. ‘For a busy man or woman’, wrote Kurtyka, summing up the accessibility of this route, ‘it is dream ground to flash an 8000m peak.’ But, he added, does a busy man or woman have the necessary confidence and stamina for that kind of high- altitude exercise? The Polish/Swiss Shishapangma climb was completed just two weeks after the same trio had flashed their new route on Cho Oyu. There is a third, harder, line on this face, pioneered in 1989 by one of the giants of Himalayan climbing, Andrej Stremfelj, and his fellow Slovenian Pavle Kozjek. This route rated IV/V mixed and up the buttress between the two central gully lines and took three days on the first ascent. The easiest descent from Shishapangma is the normal route to the north. However, most people will want to return to southern base camp. Kurtyka, Loretan and Troillet reversed their route on the south face. Other parties have chosen the original British descent, coming down the South- East Ridge to the 7300m col between Shishapangma and Pungpa Ri. This ridge has some knife- edged sections and needs care. From the col there remains a long, tiring descent of huge 45degree snow/ice slopes, trending diagonally west to avoid big serac barriers. Shishapangma’s South Face is a fine, sporting alternative to the normal route from the north. The British route is an important landmark in Himalayan alpine- style history. The Swiss/Polish route is the easiest, whilst the Slovenian line offers perhaps the most technical and absorbing mountaineering adventure.

SUMMARY STATISTICS AND INFORMATION

Mountain:- Shishapangma
Height:- 8,046m
Location:- Langtang Himal, Tibet
Route:- South-Face. Three parallel lines, each with 2200m of ascent on a 50degree face. The 1990 route is on snow and ice throughout, whilst the 1982 and 1989 routes offer varying degrees of mixed ground.
First ascent of Mountain:- Summit reached 02 May 1964, by a Chinese party led by Hsu Ching.
First ascent of Route:- 25-28 May 1982 by Alex MacIntyre, Roger Baxter-Jones & Doug Scott (UK), 17-19 October 1989 by Pavle Kozjek & Andrj Stremfelj (Slov), 2 October 1990 by Wojciech Kurtyka (Pol), Jean Troillet & Erhard Loretan (Swiss).
Height of b/c:- 5600m, above the north bank of the Nyanang Phu Glacier opposite Pemthang Karpo Ri, 6830m.
Roadhead:- Nyalam, 3800m
Length of walk-in:- Approximately 20km, 2-3 days.
Season:- May or October, as in Nepal, appear to be the best months. In May the face will be drier and probably more prone to stone fall.
Permission:- China-Tibet Mountaineering Association, Lhasa (Tibet)
Success Rate:- Quite high

Information Of Cho-Oyu Expedition

The Nangpa La is the key to an historic trading route still used illicitly today to bring wood from the Khumbu forests of Nepal to build houses on the3 barren plains of Tibet. Mountaineers driving south from Tingri toward this pass, en route to Cho Oyu or in more recent years the Rongshar Chu and the challenge of Menlungte (7181m), will be taken by the scale of this deep divide in the Himalaya. On its right is the unclimbed and beautiful Jobo Rap Sam (6666m), whilst to the left is Cho Aui (7350m), climbed by a Japanese expedition in 1986. Left again is Cho Oyu, the dominant feature of the language and the sixth highest peak in the world. This is surely one of the earth’s most beautiful places. More parties climb Cho Oyu from Tibet than Nepal. Access is much simpler, it being possible to drive to within a day of base camp though this may of course present its own acclimatization problems. Also 1982 border changes now mean that one’s passage on to the lower slopes of the classic North-west Ridge, line of the first ascent, is unreasonably difficult from the south (assuming that one doesn’t’ poach across the Nangpa La and then return south on the Gyabrag Glacier as Herbert Tichy and party did in 1954). Furthermore, many more routes have been opened on the Tibetan side of the peak, three of which are excellent technical climbs: the 2000m high north Face, climbed by a Slovenian team in 1988, the Polish west Ridge (1986), and the west Face. The west face first climbed in 1990 by that unstoppable team of Kurtyka, Troillet and Loretan, in just two days, including a descent of the north-west ridge is particularly attractive for the alpine climber. From the base of the face at about 6,200m a broad, 45degree couloir carries one high on to the face before a sustained section of mixed climbing (IV) on rock steps, punctuated by steep (60 degree) snowfields between 7000-7800m leads one to a ramp line running rightward to the unclimbed south west ridge at 8100m. The summit plateau is met very near to its highest point which may be a blessing, though it must still be crossed in order to reach the start of the descent of the original route. The Polish (west) Ridge that forms the left side of this face is easier, being mostly on steep snow and ice (up to 50 degree) though there is one 200m section of rock (III) to reach 7200m where it is possible to traverse on to the Tichy route. To stay on the ridge crest (the slopes of the original route hereabouts may be prone to avalanche in very snowy conditions) world mean joining this route higher up, nearer 7800m. Being relatively safe, it will be interesting to witness the popularity of the west Ridge in coming years. To date it has been repeated only once, in the winter of 1989 by Carlos Buhler (US) and Martin Zabaleta (Spa) who comment favorably on the quality of the climbing. At present, however, the original route is certainly the most popular. Herbert Ticht who led the first ascent was an exemplar of lightweight climbing and his story has a particular poignancy measured against modern trends of lightweight expedition. Philosopher and traveler first, mountaineer second, his aim was not solely to climb the peak, but to climb it specifically with a small team of friends. However, as the expedition progressed he became more and more consumed by the summit eventually risking the loss, at very least, of his already frostbitten fingers. ‘As nearly all religions strive to take away the fear of death and make it seem acceptable, I may claim to have had a genuine religious experience, he wrote. Others might simply call it anoxia and by most rational criteria his single-minded drive for the summit was foolhardy. However, as Diemberger once remarked, ‘everyone has the right once in his life to do something a little crazy.’ Tichy got away with it sustaining only minor permanent injuries to his fingers. He attributed his remarkable healing not to religion but to the copious quantities of Chang and Rakshi that he drank on the way home.

Tichy preferred the company of his Sherpa friends, in particular Pasang Dawa Lama who had been almost to the summit of K2 with wiessner in 1939, to other Austrians and accordingly there were just three westerners on the expedition, one of whom had no designs on the summit. The Sherpa’s meanwhile were not employed in their traditional servant role but as equal members of the climbing team and it was Pasang who really made the ascent possible. In the first push he led the route through the critical ice barrier at about 6800m; later, when news of a Swiss team also intent on Cho-Oyu reached Pasang while he was traveling back from Namche Bazar with more supplies, he produced a super human effort to ensure success. In three days he covered 50km and gained 4000m of altitude to rejoin Tichy and Sepp Jochler on the mountain and then drive them both on to the summit. On the whole route one small section of fixed rope was employed through the icefall, and no supplementary oxygen carried. The expedition was remarkable and Pasang’s achievement was comparable with Hermann Buhl’s on Nanga Parbat the previous year. The North West Ridge in not technically hard but it is a long route, finishing well above 8,000. from the Gyabrag Glacier it ascends an easy moraine and rocky ridge to Pt. 6446m (many climbers do this part of the route in lightweight training shoes). Next a long easy snow ridge is followed to the ice barrier. Conditions change but in recent years this has been negotiated by way of hole left by a collapsed serac. There will normally be fixed ropes in situ. From 7000m easy angled snow trending leftwards leads to a steepening, in some years rocky which is taken to gain access to final long snowsloped leading on to the rather featureless summit plateau. Only when the breathtaking view into the Khumbu is opened up and the Nangpa La trading route comes into sight, will climbers know they have reached the summit and be truly satisfied. We cannot leave Cho Oyu without mention of one more route, the colossal south-east in Nepal. The ascent of this face in the winter of 1985 was one of the great heroic feats of modern Polish mountaineering. This was no alpine style dash for the line up the huge central spur is long and intricate, with some very hard climbing on rock and ice. Faced with those difficulties and the extreme winter conditions on an 8000m peak, Andrzej Zawada led a concerted team effort with fixed ropes. Even with that kind of support the second summit team of Zygmunt Heinrich and Jerzy Kukuczka ended up bivouacking in the open high on the face when they failed to find camp 5 at the end of the short winter day. Compared to the south-east face in winter, the shorter routes on the north side of Cho-Oyu are all quite gentle propositions. The comparative easy of north-west Ridge is well illustrated by statistics: by the end of 1993 over 400 people had reached the summit by this route. However, people do die here. Cho-Oyu is a big mountain and anyone caught on its dome-like summit plateau in a storm could be hard pushed to find his way back down.

SUMMARY STATISTICS AND INFORMATION

Mountain:- Cho-Oyu
Height:- 8,201m
Location:- Mahalungur Himal, Khumbu Subsection, Tibet
Route:- North-West Ridge. 2200m of ascent on snow with a short section on steep ice and possible rock.
First ascent of Mountain:- Summit reached 19 October 1954 (the only eight thousand) by Herbert Tichy & Sepp Jochler (Aus), Pasang Dawa Lama (Nepal)
First ascent of Route:- As above
Height of b/c:- 5600m, above the north bank of the Gyabrag Glacier.
Roadhead:- As far south from Tingri as trucks can travel, usually to about 4350m. In the post monsoon period it should be possible to drive right up to drive right up to 4800m, below the Fusi La.
Length of walk-in:- Approximately 10km, 1 day.
Season:- May-June or September-October
Permission:- China-Tibet Mountaineering Association, Lhasa (Tibet)
Success Rate:- High over 50 per cent of expeditions visiting all routes on Cho-Oyu succeed in reaching the top; on the North-west Ridge the success rate is higher. Over 400 people had reached the top by the end of 1993.

Information Of Everest Expedition

It is over forty years since the first ascent of Everest, the world’s highest mountain. Many, if pressed, world say that its summit is the one place they would most like to reach. Even those who scorn peak baggers cannot fail to understand its draw. So strong is it that some mountaineers are fully prepared to litter the mountain and its base camp sites with packaging, discarded tins of food, glass, ropes, oxygen cylinders and tents that will never decay only rip in the wind or lie frosted each year buried in snow and stripped again by winter winds. Such desecration and disregard for Everest was sadly inevitable. In order to conquer this peak man has felt moved to disarm it trussing it up in tens of kilometers of fixed rope. But many now consider such a siege style outdated and unacceptable. The emphasis among modern mountaineers, visiting peaks of any size, is not to reduce the mountain in this way but instead to raise them and climb it in a lightweight, environmentally sensitive manner. Everest has witnessed every phase of the development of Himalayan mountaineering. That is not remarkable, but the scale of the achievements is. Its history is known well enough seven determined efforts in the twenties and thirties reaching over 8,500m on the North ridge with minimum of technological aids the first proven ascent in 1953 from Nepal the stupendous traverse by Tom Hornbein and Willi Unsoeld ten years later, the ascent of the South-west face in 1975 the first ascent without oxygen assistance in 1978 by Peter Habeler and Reinhold Messner. Two years later Messner succeeded in making a solo ascent from the north in just three days showing that a rapid time was possible if one could catch the correct conditions. Messner chose a calm spell at the end of the monsoon when the mountain had a heavy snow cover which had consolidated just enough to allow rapid progress. He took the pre-war route to 7800m and then made a long tracerse across the North Face (below the level of the pre-war attempts) to gain the Great Couloirs and thence the final summit pyramid. Earlier in the year a Japanese party had forced a route (using extensive fixed rope) directly up the right hand side of the North face to link up with the Hornbein Couloirs. After the Messner ascent other climbs notably the 1984 Australian ascent of “White Limbo” – confirmed that by catching good snow conditions it was possible to reach the summit quickly and this point was powerfully confirmed by a rapid ascent of the Face in 1986 by two of the world’s greatest exponents of the art of extreme climbing in the Himalaya. This ascent more than any other in this book, and appropriately enough on the world’s highest peak, expresses alpine-style in its most natural and powerful form.

The story, by its own design is simple. Erhard Loretan and Jean Troillet (Swiss) with Pierre Beghin (French) crossed Tibet and approached the North Face of Everest in the monsoon season of 1986. They made advance base at 5850m on the Rongbuk Glacier and spent five weeks acclimatizing, with only two forays to 6500m on neighboring peaks. Then at 10PM on 28 August they left advance base for the foot of the Japanese Couloirs. They climbed through the night and by 11 AM reached 7800m. Here they stopped to spend the next ten hours of warm daylight relaxing and melting snow for drinks. At 9 PM they set off again, but at 8000m Beghin turned back. Unable to locate the snow cave where he left his sleeping bag, he was forced to spend the night in the open, luckily with out ill effects. Loretan and Troillet continued up the Hornbein Couloirs and at 8400m, after four hours climbing, they could go no further in the dark and were forced to wait for dawn. At 4 AM they were again on the move and reached the summit at 1 PM. They lounged here for ninety minutes in the warmest part of the day. Finding the snow conditions perfect, they descended the entire face by sitting glissade in just five hours three hours to the snow hole where Beghin was resting and a further two hours to the foot of the face! Away from advance base for less than two days, they had been to the roof of the world and back. They had climbed un-roped mainly at night. They took no tents, ropes or harnesses. They did not use bottled oxygen and they carried only lightweight sleeping bags and minimal food rations. Above 7800m they did not even carry a rucksack. It was as Kurtyka quipped, ‘night naked-ness’. They took nothing and left nothing. Such pure expression of control on the world’s premier peak requires more than a little fitness and confidence. It demands a full understanding of nature and of one’s own physiology and psychology. It is interesting to note they only acclimatized to 6500m before starting their bold ascent and that they were then in the so-called ‘death zone’ for just sixteen hours. This ascent of Everest, one of the very few in pure alpine-styles, stands alongside Messner’s solo ascent for its careful planning and confident execution. Both carried a bare minimum of weight in order to move fast and so limit the amount of time at high altitude. Messner, however, did carry full bivouac equipment, including a small tent his climb was longer and taking everything into account probably more difficult. The evening Troillet and Loretan descended Beghin made his attempt, but at 8300m weakened by his night in the open he decided that the task was too great and returned to the snow hole. At dawn he descended, taking two hours to reach the Rongbuk Glacier. An hour later a huge powder snow avalanche swept the entire couloirs.

Beghin returned to the face in 1987 with a Spanish expedition. They pushed a new variation up the left side of the Japanese Couloirs and in a spirited effort Beghin and Luis Barcenas continued up the Hornbein Couloirs and reached the west Ridge at 8700m before heavy snow stopped them. All the ascents were made in August or early September, in short spells of settled weather at the end of the monsoon season. It is usually warmer at this time of year and there is more snow, too, which in good condition reduces the technical difficulty of the climbing and the risk of stone falls. The North Ridge is notoriously exposed to winds but, further right on the face in the lee of the West Ridge, the Loretan/Troillet route is usually more sheltered. Our topo shows the line of Loretan and Troillet’s route, the most direct on Everest. It is a hybrid of two other climbs. Up to 7800m the route follows the line of a wide curving gully cutting vaguely through two rock bands at c.6990m and c.7400m. This gully line was used by the Japanese in 1980, but they reached it by a rising traverse from the left side of the face to join the gully at the first rock band, whereas in 1986 Beghin, Loretan and Troillet climbed more or less directly up its right side. Above 7800m the route follows the Hornbein couloirs as taken by the Americans is 1963. At its top the route moves right to gain the west ridge at around 8700m. Between the bergschrund and the first band, the angle of the slope varies between 50degree and 70degree above that the angle is kinder, averaging about 45degree until it steepness again Hornbein couloirs. In spring there are several awkward rock pitches in the couloirs, but after the monsoon it is usually banked up with snow, leaving just two rock pitches at the top before the exit on to the west Ridge.

SUMMARY STATISTICS AND INFORMATION

Mountain:- Everest: Sagarmatha (Nepal)/Chomolungma (Tibet)
Height:- 8,848m
Location:- Mahalungur Himal, Khumbu Subsection, East Nepal / Tibet
Route:- North Face (Loretan/Troillet variant) 2600m of ascent from bergschrund, mostly on steep snow fields (in places up to 70degree) but with some mixed ground (IV) possible in places.
First ascent of Mountain:- 29th May 1953, by Edmund Hillary (NZ) and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay (Nepal) as members of the British expedition led by John Hunt.
First ascent of Route:- Hornbein Couloirs –Tom Hornmein & Willi Jusoeld (USA), May 1963. Japanese Couloirs/Hornbein Couloirs Takashi Ozaki & Tsuneo Shigehiro (Jap). 10 May 1980.
First Alpine-style ascent of route:- By lower variant – Erthard Loretan & Jean Troillet (Swiss), 29-30 August 1986.
Height of b/c:- 5600m, near the junction of the East and central Rongbuk Glaciers.
Roadhead:- From Shegar on the Friendship Highway it is possible to take a truck to within a days walk of base camp.
Season:- Both the Japanese and Hornbein couloirs are technically easier after the monsoon snowfall. Comparatively warm weather in late August also aided the Loretan/Troillet ascent. However, they were lucky to find the right combination of consolidated snow and clear weather.
Permission:- China-Tibet Mountaineering Association, Lhasa (Tibet)
Success Rate:- This route has been climbed only once in alpine-style against a background of several serious attempts.

Technical Expedition Information

Experiencing the mystique of the nepal and tibet mountains….
The Himalaya have challenged and humbled mankind long before mankind challenged the Himalayan. Thanks to the indomitable spirit of earlier mountaineers, the Himalaya today acts both as a spiritual as well as a physical challenge to a fast growing number of explorers and mountaineers. Here, at the roof of the world, you can find over fifty peaks which tower 7,000m high, and eight peaks with elevations of over 8,000m. With the scaling of Mt. Everest by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgey Sherpa in 1953 the Himalaya have become prime destinations for mountaineering expeditions from all parts of the world. Today’s in Nepal alone the government allows foreign alpinists to ascend 18 Himalaya mountaineering climbing peaks as well as 133 expeditions peaks. For over almost thirty years Ramdung Expedition has catered the needs of Himalaya mountaineers in a professional and committed manner. Having organized 115 expeditions to Mt. Everest the company annually manages the logistics of some thirty expeditions team Nepal and Tibet Himalaya mountaineering expeditions. Apart from facilitating the climbing of well known “peaks” such as Mt. Everest Expedition, Mt. Amadablam expedition, Mt. Dhaulagiri Expedition, Mt, Manaslu Expedition, Mt. Cho-Oyu Expedition and Mt. Shishapangma Expedition, Ramdung manages expeditions to lesser known peaks such as Tilicho, Langtang Lirung and Pumori. The Nepalese support teams consist of highly motivated, well experienced Climbing Sherpa’s who have been trained by one of mountaineering expeditions leading mountaineering companies. Ramdung Expedition with good connections. The company has a high safety record and has seen good success rates.

RAMDUNG EXPEDITION PVT. LTD. ORGANIZES THREE TYPES OF EXPEDITIONS: –

  • All inclusive full board Nepal expeditions. Include all the required expedition services form / to base camp.
  • All inclusive full board Tibet expeditions. Include all the required services From / To Advance Base Camp (ABC).
  • All inclusive super full board Nepal and Tibet expeditions. Includes all required service From / To the summit.

WHEN TO GO ?
Ramdung Expedition organizes expeditions in Spring (February till May), During the Rainy Season (May through August) and Autumn season (August till October).

WHAT IS FIXED ROPE ?
Rope fixed in the beginning of expedition and remains till last of expedition in mountain for ascending and descending purpose for climbers. Climbers attach the zoomer in fix rope so that they don’t slip and fall down. Rope used in mountain as fixed rope is reliable, strong and technique proved. Everest expedition north col is fixed rope start just after glacier 6800m till to summit.

WHAT IS CREVASSE WHOLE ?
Crevasse is empty space or deep crack a very thick layer of ice.

WHAT IS RIDGE ?
The pointed or little flat part between the two slopes of mountain is ridge. Usually climbers walk through ridge to climb. In Everest, most off the climbing trail is from ridge. Only below and above camp three, some part climbers have to climb through wall.

WHAT IS ZOOMER ?
Zoomer is metal apparatus use for ascending and descending process in climbing. It is attach with harness or zoomer belt and fix with fixed rope. When you move it, it goes up and it helps you to move up or hang up.

WHAT IS MAIN ROPE ?
It is rope tie in your body and with 2- 3 or 3-4 climbers together in difference of 4m each. Main rope is use for safety for climbing or descending in mountain.

WHAT IS A CRAMPON ?
It is metal apparatus with 10 to 12 points fixed on the bottom of plastic boots or climbing boots for climbing in ice and snow.