Having scaled the fifth and fourth highest mountain on earth, without bottled oxygen and a High-Altitude Sherpa by his side – the spring season in Nepal went like clockwork for the German climber Thomas Lämmle. The 52-year-old from the town of Waldburg in Baden-Württemberg summited the 8,485-meter-high Makalu on 13 May. Only eight days later, on 21 May, Thomas stood on top of the 8,516-meter-high Lhotse, in the immediate vicinity of Mount Everest. Lämmle has now scaled seven eight-thousanders after Cho Oyu (in 2003), Gasherbrum II (in 2005 and 2013), Manaslu (in 2008), Shishapangma (in 2013) and Mount Everest (in 2016). I asked him about his experiences.
Thomas, last year your four summit attempts on Makalu failed due to bad weather. How have you been during your successful summit bid this spring?
Date6. June 2018 | 20:49
The fog is clearing. The climbers mentioned in my last blog post have spoken. For days, the false report had been tenacious that Tenjing (mostly called “Tenji”) Sherpa and Lakpa Dendi Sherpa were the only mountaineers this season to climb Everest without bottled oxygen. “I think the confusion arose because Sherpa Dendi radio ahead of us on the summit to say we had all made it,” Jon Griffith, Tenjing’s British rope partner, wrote in a comment to my article on Facebook. “Given that Tenji was attempting a no O2 climb and given that radio comms is pretty poor from the summit I suspect that Base Camp assumed that he had climbed without O2 and hence the rumour spread.”
Date5. June 2018 | 14:05
TagsJon Griffith, Lakpa Dendi Sherpa, Lech Flaczynski, Makalu, Mount Everest, Tenjing Sherpa, Wojziech Flaczynski
All’s well that ends well. Today, 20-year-old American Matt Moniz and his mentor, 49-year-old Argentine Willie Benegas, reached the 8,850-meter summit of Mount Everest. “0459 Summit! We’re on top of the world,” Matt tweeted. On Wednesday, the two climbers also want to scale neighboring Lhotse (8,516 m) , the fourth highest mountain on earth. As reported, the Nepalese Ministry of Tourism had considered revoking Moniz’ and Benegas’ climbing permits. The reason: They had skied down the Lhotse flank during an acclimatization climb – without having a so-called “ski permit”. However, only a few knew about the existence of such a special permit. After about 150 Climbing Sherpas had campaigned for Matt and Willie in an open letter to the Ministry of Tourism for Matt and Willie, the people in charge gave in talking about a “very innocent mistake”. The way for today’s Everest summit attempt was free.
Date20. May 2018 | 17:51
TagsCarlos Soria, Dawa Steven Sherpa, Death, Dhaulagiri, Kanchenjunga, Lhotse, Matt Moniz, Maya Sherpa, Mingma Gyalje Sherpa, Mount Everest, Nima Jangmu Sherpa, Willie Benegas
Persistence pays off. The German high altitude climber Thomas Lämmle reached, as he wrote on Facebook yesterday, on last Sunday the 8,485 meter high summit of Makalu, the fifth highest mountain on earth. The 52-year-old from the city of Waldburg in Baden-Württemberg climbed without bottled oxygen and Sherpa support. Last year, Thomas had returned empty-handed from Makalu after four summit attempts, all of which had failed due to bad weather. Now, according to his own words, he also wants to tackle Lhotse, the fourth highest mountain in the world, “before the snowfall – means May 21st”. Makalu was Lämmle’s sixth eight-thousander after Cho Oyu (in 2003), Gasherbrum II (in 2005 and 2013), Manaslu (in 2008), Shishapangma (in 2013) and Mount Everest (in 2016).
Date18. May 2018 | 11:53
TagsCarlos Soria, Chris Jensen Burke, Fatalities, Herbert Hellmuth, Kangchenjunga, Lhotse, Makalu, Maya Sherpa, Mount Everest, Pemba Gelje Sherpa, Thomas Lämmle
Now, also from the Tibetan north side, the first climbers out of commercial teams have scaled Mount Everest. Swiss expedition leader Kari Kobler reported that three of his clients reached the highest point at 8,850 meters today. On Monday, the team responsible for fixing the ropes via the Northeast Ridge to the summit, had finished their work. This had already happened a day earlier on the Nepalese south side. On Monday about 50 mountaineers had climbed to the highest point on the southern route. Among them was the Australian Steve Plain. The 36-year-old set a new time record for climbing the Seven Summits, the highest mountains of all continents.
Date15. May 2018 | 15:52
In the fifth attempt, Xia Boyu made it. As Mingma Gyalje Sherpa, expedition leader and head of the Nepalese operator “Imagine Trek and Expedition”, wrote on Facebook, the 69-year-old Chinese was among 14 members of his team, who today reached the summit of Mount Everest at 8,850 meters. Among the summiteers was also Nima Jangmu Sherpa, the first Nepali woman to scale Everest and neighboring Lhotse in one season. She had also been part of the Mingma-led team that had succeeded the first eight-thousander summit success of the spring season on 29 April on Lhotse.
Date14. May 2018 | 13:14
TagsAnish Luidel, Cho Oyu, Climbalaya, Felix Berg, Imagine, Mingma Gyalje Sherpa, Mount Everest, Nima Jangmu Sherpa, Summit Climb, Xia Boyu
Mount Everest was scaled for the first time in this spring season. Today, eight climbers from Nepal reached the highest point at 8,850 meters after climbing up on the south side of the mountain. Pasang Tenjing Sherpa, Pasdawa Sherpa, Lakpa Dendi Sherpa, Jen Jen Lama, Siddi Bahadur Tamang, Pemba Chhiri Sherpa, Tenzing Gyaljen Sherpa and Datuk Bhote fixed ropes up to the summit, paving the way for the clients of the commercial expedition teams.
Date13. May 2018 | 17:11
TagsAnnapurna, Boyan Petrov, Kim Hong Bin, Mount Everest, rescue operation, Shishapangma, Summit success
Nobody puts it bluntly. But to be honest, the hope of finding the most successful Bulgarian high altitude climber Boyan Petrov alive on the eight-thousander Shishapangma in Tibet is beginning to fade. On 3 May, nine days ago, the 45-year-old was last seen by telescope from the base camp. Since then, there has been no trace of Boyan. Bad weather had delayed the rescue operation for days. On Saturday, two helicopters of the Nepali company Simrik Air, specialized in rescue operations, started to search for Petrov. Without success. What the crew members found, photographed and filmed as “suspicious objects” near Camp 3 at an altitude of about 7,300 meters, turned out to be stones and rocks when the material was subsequently viewed. The helicopter teams had to return to the Nepalese capital because the fuel ran out. “We are standby at Kathmandu for the same mission,” Simrik Air said. Also the rescue team on the slopes on the mountain, three Sherpas and three Chinese climbers, have not yet found Petrov. The rescuers were spending the night in Camp 2. On Sunday, the search is to be continued.
Date12. May 2018 | 21:17
There is still no trace of Boyan Petrov. As reported, the most successful Bulgarian high altitude climber has been missing for days on the eight-thousander Shishapangma in Tibet. The Bulgarian government has joined the rescue operation. Prime Minister Boyko Borissov said they were in constant communication with the authorities in Nepal and China, as well as with Petrov’s family. According to Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva, a helicopter suitable for flights in high altitude is now available to search for the 45-year-old. Directly on the slopes of the mountain, a rescue team of three Chinese climbers and three Sherpas is in action. Despite bad weather, the rescuers had climbed to Camp 2 at 6,900 meters, it said.
Date9. May 2018 | 16:02
You would normally not come up with this. If you climb Mount Everest and at some point want to put on your skis, you need a special permit. The 20-year-old American Matt Moniz and his mentor, the 49-year-old Argentine Willie Benegas, had to experience this. Citing sources at the Nepalese Ministry of Tourism, the newspaper “Himalayan Times” reports that the two climbers are now threatened with being deprived of their permission to climb Everest and Lhotse this spring. However, everything had started so well. “After ten years dreaming about it, it happened! Managed to ski from Camp 3 (on) Everest (at) 7,200 meters to Camp 2 (at) 6.400m,” said Benegas. “Not much difficulty but definitely good eyes needed to read the terrain, catching an ice patch would be a bad thing to happen!” Matt and Willie did not suspect that they had scated on their descent on thin bureaucratic ice.
Date9. May 2018 | 10:23
TagsEdmond Joyeusaz, Federico Colli, Julius Seidenader, Luis Stitzinger, Matt Moniz, Mount Everest, Nepalese Tourism Ministry, Ski descent, Ski-Permit, Willie Benegas
The most successful Bulgarian high altitude climber, Boyan Petrov, has been missing for several days on the eight-thousander Shishapangma in Tibet. This was confirmed today by his partner Radoslava Nenova on Facebook. According to her, a search for Petrov is to begin tomorrow. Previously, the team of the Hungarian climber David Klein reported that the 45-year-old Bulgarian had set off on 29 April for a solo attempt without bottled oxygen. On 3 May, last Thursday, Petrov was seen from base camp by telescope at the level of Camp 3. On Saturday, an Ukrainian and three Sherpas reached Camp 3 at about 7,400 meters and found Boyan’s semi-open tent with his sleeping bag, covered in snow. Obviously, Petrov had left for the summit.
Date7. May 2018 | 10:35
Actually, the tent is a place of refuge and security. And most of the time I felt safe when I lay in my tent in the mountains. But there were exceptions. For example in 2004 during my reportage trip to K2, when I woke up suddenly in the base camp at the foot of the second highest mountain on earth, because the glacier made noises under my tent floor, as if it wanted to devour me in the next moment. Ten years later, during the first ascent of the seven-thousander Kokodak Dome in western China, we pitched up Camp 1 at 5,500 meters at a quite exposed spot – and I wondered: What happens if a real storm is raging here? That’s what I remembered when I learned of the death of Italian Simone La Terra on Dhaulagiri earlier this week.
Date4. May 2018 | 14:22
TagsDhaulagiri, Doug Scott, Huber brothers, Kangchenjunga, Latok III, Manaslu, Simone La Terra, Tent, Waldemar Dominik
The early eight-thousander bird catches the worm. Mingma Gyalje Sherpa once again lived up to his reputation as an early starter and booked the first eight-thousander summit success of this spring season on the 8516-meter-high Lhotse, the fourth highest mountain in the world. “We are on Lhotse summit now,” wrote the 32-year-old on Sunday morning on Facebook. “Thanks to ‘Madission‘ team for their hard work till 7800m and our team for further hard work till summit. Imagine Trek & Expedition team rocks.” Mingma is the head and expedition leader of the Nepalese operator.
Date30. April 2018 | 10:56
“The man without fingers” wants to get his twelfth eight-thousander. Kim Hong-bin is the only foreign mountaineer to whom the Government of Nepal issued a permit for the eight-thousander Annapurna this spring. However, that does not mean that the 53-year-old Korean will be traveling alone. In the picture from the north side of the 8091-meter-high mountain, which was published by the South Korean newspaper No Cut News, I count 20 other people besides Hong-bin. “He probably has a large base camp support team,” Billi Bierling from the chronicle Himalayan Database writes to me, adding, that the Korean will be accompanied during his climb by four Sherpas.
Date26. April 2018 | 16:03
TagsAnnapurna, Denali, Disabled climber, Eight-thousander, Kim Hong Bin, Nepal, Seven Summits, South Korea, Südkorea
He leaves the records to others. “I could do something to set a record on Everest, but I don’t want to do that because I have so much respect to the mountains,” Tendi Sherpa tells me. “I have no problems with others who do records. But for myself, my interest and my aim is: I just want to keep climbing mountains, keep leading and working as a normal guide. I don’t need to be super popular.” Tendi is already known. He has scaled Mount Everest eleven times so far, eight times from the south, three times from the north. Summit success number twelve could follow this spring. The 34-year-old will be the Sirdar, the head of the Sherpas, on an expedition of the US operator “Climbing the Seven Summits” on the Nepalese south side of the highest mountain in the world. Five of his clients want to climb Everest, two Lhotse.
Date12. April 2018 | 18:02
TagsClimbing the Seven Summits, Expedition, Helicopter rescue, Mount Everest, TAGnepal, Tendi Sherpa