The Taliban attack on the basecamp at the Diamir side of Nanga parbat has left even Pakistan experts stunned. „We have been caught cold“, Eberhard Andres told me. He is working for the German trekking agency Hauser Exkursionen and is responsible for trips to Pakistan. „It was really the first time that something like this has happened.“ Last weekend Taliban terrorists had attacked the Diamir basecamp and killed eleven climbers: three Chinese, three Ukrainians, two Slovaks, a Lithuanian, a Nepalese and a Pakistani. The attack was of „a completely new quality“, Dominik Müller, head of the agency Amical Alpin, said to me. Swiss expedition organizer Kari Kobler is shocked as well: „We knew that Pakistan can be a dangerous place. But not in the north!“ All of them expect negative consequences for mountain tourism in Pakistan, which had just began to get back on its feet after lean years as a result of the tense political situation.
Date25. June 2013 | 11:30
“Killer Mountain” is written on the sign on Karakoram Highway, where you can take a look at the majestic 8000er Nanga Parbat. Actually the sign recalls the numerous tragedies on the “Naked Mountain” in the last century, for example in 1937, when 16 members of a German expedition died in an avalanche. But now the sign has received a new, oppressive meaning. A hit squad penetrated to the base camp on the Diamir side of Nanga Parbat and shot at least ten people. The Pakistani government said the victims were five climbers from Ukraine, four Chinese and a Pakistani guide.
Date23. June 2013 | 17:39
The sad news from the Himalayas don’t stop. On the 8000er Shishapangma in Tibet a German climber died of a high altitude cerebral edema. The expedition agency Amical alpin informed that the climber from the Bavarian region Chiemgau had belonged to a group of six members who, together with expedition leader Thomas Laemmle and their Climbing Sherpa Pasang, had reached the 8013-meter-high central summit of Shishapangma on 10th May. While descending the climber at first had shown symptoms of a high altitude pulmonary edema.
Date16. May 2013 | 15:47
What should have been a highlight in the history of climbing on Everest, ended in tragedy. Russian climber Alexei Bolotov fell to death in the Khumbu Icefall. Together with his compatriot Denis Urubko the 50-year-old mountaineer wanted to open a new route via the steep Southwest Face. As Denis said on phone, the rope broke on a sharp edge of rock when Alexei was abseiling. Bolotov fell down about 300 metres and died instantly. He was found at 5600 metres.
Date15. May 2013 | 17:10
The top climbers Simone Moro from Italy and Ueli Steck from Switzerland and their British photographer Jon Griffith have abandoned their expedition on Mount Everest. They were responding to the fact that last Saturday they had been attacked and threatened with death by furios Sherpas in camp 2. „The history of mountaineering on Everest started with a partnership between a Sherpa and a foreigner. 60 years later this partnership has changed considerably“, Simone Moro said. He wants to stay at Everest basecamp to do some rescue flights with his helicopter. Ueli Steck headed back home. „My trust is gone. I can’t return to this mountain, even if all say that something like this would not happen again”, Ueli said in basecamp to the German journalist and climber Billi Bierling. „Who guarantees me that the furious mob will not cut my rope or burn down my tent?”
Date1. May 2013 | 0:57
Actually, you think anything possible has already happened on Mount Everest. But it’s a sad novelty that in a high camp three climbers are beaten, kicked, pelted with stones and threatened with death by furious sherpas. The two top climbers Simone Moro from Italy and Ueli Steck from Switzerland and their British photographer Jonathan Griffith have been effected by the incident. „Something from another world“, Simone called what happened to them.
Date29. April 2013 | 13:02
Just now Russell Brice has a lot on his plate. The 60-year-old climber from New Zealand, owner of Himalayan Experience, is leading his 18th commercial expedition to Mount Everest. The most prominent of his ten clients who want to climb the highest mountain of the world is Evelyne Binsack. In 2001 she was the first woman of Switzerland who scaled Everest coming from the Tibetan north side of the mountain. This time Evelyne, aged 45, will try it from the south, for a documentary she also wants to carry her camera to the summit. Russell will stay at the bottom as basecamp manager, also looking after six climbers for Lhotse and four women who want to scale the 7861-metre high Nuptse. German journalist and mountaineer Billi Bierling is a member of this last mentioned team. Although Russell is „quite busy”, as he wrote me, he has taken time to send me his thoughts on occasion of the 60-year-jubilee of the first ascent of Mount Everest.
Date5. April 2013 | 15:13