Txikon, ‘Sadpara’ and Nardi have their route ready for summit push, just need to wait for a good window
Text: Igone Mariezkurrena (Nanga Parbat BC)
Twelve days of hard work in mountain, three nights in C1 (4.800m), other four nights on the small and unconfortable platform in C2 (6.100m) and more than 2.500 meters of rope (almos 200 kilos) carried up and fixed along the route, up to its C3 (6.700m).
Twenty five days are gone since we arrived in this Base Camp; it was 31th December, and during this time the team leaded by Alex Txikon has been able to equip the hardest and most technical parts of this Kinshofer Route in winter Nanga Parbat (8.126m) up to its C3 (6.700m): the 900 icy meters of the stip couloir that goes from 5.100m to the base of the Kinshofer Wall; this rocky bastion that seems to be a kind of door for C2 (6.100m); and the seven pitches on blue ice (about 25–30 meters) that go from 6.500m to 6.700m between C2 (6.100m) and C3 (6.700m).
They’ve got lines ready (in some sections double lines), the route equipped up to C3 (6.700m), enough material/food/gas up there, and have spent several nights in altitude; the international team feels really satisfied with the job done and strong enough for going for summit push as soon as weather gives them a chance.
“If conditions do not change, from C3 we could notice that it won’t be necessary to fix anything else from 6.700m to summit”, Txikon explains. Of course, some other important factors like cold and altitude are serious from C3 on, but Txikon, ‘Sadpara’ and Nardi are convinced they’ve finished the most complicated, committed and hard part of the expedition: “We’ve memorized the route, we know how many meters and which rope we have in each section… we’ve amplely prepared the route for summit push… now we just need to be lucky with weather; hope it will give us a chance”.
Hard winds weather forecasts talked about are already here. The three climbers came down to BC yesterday, after stablishing a deposit in C3 and spending the night in C2. Now there’s nothing else to do but wait and cross fingers so that it doesn’t snow too hard (that would force them to open the track again from BC to C1) and these bad days do not last very long.