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with Stefan Nestler

Speculation on Nanga Parbat

Elisabeth Revol and Tomek Mackiewicz

Elisabeth Revol and Tomek Mackiewicz

Reporting about what happened today on Nanga Parbat was a bitl like fishing in murky waters. I tried to make out from the wildly swirling information on the Internet where the climbers on the mountain currently were. The sun has long since set in Pakistan, so I’m assuming that the mountaineers have sought protection in their tents. It is still unclear how far the Pole Tomek Mackiewicz and the Frenchwoman Elisabeth Revol have climbed up during their first summit attempt. The Pakistani Arslan Ahmed, who had joined the team but had to leave because of health problems, had contact with Tomek for the last time at 10.30 local time. “They were at 7400 meters, and he said we are close”, Arslan writes to me. Since then, all attempts to call Mackiewicz and Revol by satellite phone have been unsuccessful. Reportedly, the two climbers had left the Messner route and turned to the Buhl route towards the summit – the long way that Hermann Buhl took during the first ascent in 1953. On his legendary solo climb, Buhl had overcome an altitude of 1,300 meters on his summit day and afterwards survived a bivouac below 8,000 meters just standing.

“Nanga Dream” team at 7,200 meters

On the other side of the mountain, the Rupal side, the Polish “Nanga Dream” team has made good progress on the Schell route today. Their GPS tracking device shows that they have climbed up to 7,200 meters – that is until the Mazeno Ridge, from where they can look down to the Diamir side of the mountain. If everything works perfectly, the team could reach the summit tomorrow, Saturday.

The Spaniard Alex Txikon, the Italians Daniele Nardi and the Pakistani Ali Sadpara today climbed on the Kinshofer route in one go from Base Camp to Camp 2 at 6,100 meters. The Italians Simone Moro and Tamara Lunger, who had ascended on the Messner route, have returned to Base Camp. They said, the wind picked up and the bad weather might come sooner than expected. Actually, the stable winter weather on Nanga Parbat should continue until Sunday. It remains exciting.

Update 17.30: Arslan Ahmed was able to contact Tomek and Elisabeth. They “are fine, resting in Camp 4. They are very tired”, Arslan writes on Twitter, adding that he is not allowed to say more.


22. January 2016 | 16:36