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Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

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Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

22 Jan 2018 19:25

I decided to give you some information about Polish K2 winter expedition, which is 4th attempt to climb K2 in winter in history.

14 mountains in the world reach over 8.000 meters. All have been climbed in winter except for K2, despite attempts that began in 1987, 2002 and 2012. Of the 13 mountains over 8.000 meters that have been climbed in the winter, nine were reached by Polish teams and one was reached by a team of Poles and Italians.

K2 is a much more dangerous than Mt. Everest: 84 people have died on the mountain. Only 306 people have ever reached the top, compared to the more than 4.000 that have completed the ascent on Mount Everest.

There have been only 3 serious attempts so far to climb K2 in winter, all failed below 8000 meters due to bad weather. The highest level ever reached is 7.650 meters (by 3 Poles) - their summit attempt was suddenly stopped beacuse of the medical reasons. Two of the Poles (Marcin Kaczkan and Denis Urubko) are members of today's expedition, but the third, Piotr Morawski died in 2009 climbing Dhaulagiri.

Unfortunately himalaism is full of real tragedies. On 5th of March 2013 four Polish climbers reached first time in winter in history Broad Peak (8.051 m.). They left their tents (4th camp, 7.400 m) at 5 a.m. The final 650 m of ascent was challenged after... 12-13 hours, between 5 and 6 p.m. Adam Bielecki reached 4th camp after 4 hours of return, Artur Małek 4 hours later. But the last phone conversation with Maciej Berbeka and Tomek Kowalski in the middle of the night made clear all the drama: they weren't able to make any step. Tomek's body was found by Maciej's brother, Jacek Berbeka in Summer 2013 at the level of c.a. 7900 m. and buried in crevasse. Maciej Berbeka body was never found.

But now an elite team of 13 Polish climbers (including Urubko, Bielecki, Kaczkan, Małek and Krzysztof Wielicki - 5th man in history who reached all higher than 8.000 m. summits) started in January their attempt to make history by summiting K2 in winter.
On 9th of January their reached base camp at c.a. 5000 m. Now they have one of maybe 2 or 3 few days periods in winter when the weather is excellent: at the level of 6000 m. the wind chill temperature is c.a. -40C with the wind of only 30 km/h. They managed to establish the ropes till 6300 m., Denis Urubko will spend today's night at 2nd camp (6.300 m. ), Artur Małek and Marek Chmielarski at 1 st. camp (5.900 m.).
But in the end of the week the weather will be slightly different: at 7000 m the wind chill temperature will be -60/-70C with the wind between 70-90 km/h. So probably other climbers will have to establish 3rd camp (7000 m.) as soon as possible. Later, they probably will have to wait: the wind will be "normal", exceeding 100 km/h - no chances to continue climbing.

Here you have some information in English about expedition and link to the weather foreacast:
http://blogs.dw.com/adventuresports/polish-k2-winter-expedition-a-matter-of-honor/
https://www.mountain-forecast.com/peaks/K2/forecasts/8000
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22 Jan 2018 21:23

Sometimes I do get lost on the internet and end up reading about stories of mountaineers. Very fascinating and very scary at the same time.

I think the Everest death ratio is like 6% or so, and that's with many half trained people climbing it for yolo reasons. Still, stories of the corpses remaining there are chilling.

Do have to say though, climbing K2 in the winter seems like a death wish.
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Re:

23 Jan 2018 02:26

Red Rick wrote:Sometimes I do get lost on the internet and end up reading about stories of mountaineers. Very fascinating and very scary at the same time.

I think the Everest death ratio is like 6% or so, and that's with many half trained people climbing it for yolo reasons. Still, stories of the corpses remaining there are chilling.

From all the documentaries I have watched K2 is the one you really want to get if you're a true climber.

Everest - bah, that's just for the tourists!
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Re: Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

26 Jan 2018 11:29

Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:There have been only 3 serious attempts so far to climb K2 in winter, all failed below 8000 meters due to bad weather. The highest level ever reached is 7.650 meters (by 3 Poles) - their summit attempt was suddenly stopped beacuse of the medical reasons. Two of the Poles (Marcin Kaczkan and Denis Urubko) are members of today's expedition, but the third, Piotr Morawski died in 2009 climbing Dhaulagiri.

Unfortunately himalaism is full of real tragedies. On 5th of March 2013 four Polish climbers reached first time in winter in history Broad Peak (8.051 m.).

You are ot entirely right on this. Denis Urubko was Kazakh back when they've reached 7650 meers. He renounced Kazakh citizenship in 2012 and got Russian citizenship. In 2015 he received Polish citizenship but hardly he can be considered Pole.

Interestingly, Urubko considers Broad Peak and Gasherbrum I unclimbed in winter. 5th March and 8th March he doesn't consider winter. He considers period between 1st december and 28th or 29th March as true winter for Himalayas and Karakoram. So he doesn't consider Polish expedition which reached Broad peak top on 5th MArch being winter.
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Re: Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

26 Jan 2018 17:46

Kokoso wrote:
Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:There have been only 3 serious attempts so far to climb K2 in winter, all failed below 8000 meters due to bad weather. The highest level ever reached is 7.650 meters (by 3 Poles) - their summit attempt was suddenly stopped beacuse of the medical reasons. Two of the Poles (Marcin Kaczkan and Denis Urubko) are members of today's expedition, but the third, Piotr Morawski died in 2009 climbing Dhaulagiri.

Unfortunately himalaism is full of real tragedies. On 5th of March 2013 four Polish climbers reached first time in winter in history Broad Peak (8.051 m.).

You are ot entirely right on this. Denis Urubko was Kazakh back when they've reached 7650 meers. He renounced Kazakh citizenship in 2012 and got Russian citizenship. In 2015 he received Polish citizenship but hardly he can be considered Pole.

Interestingly, Urubko considers Broad Peak and Gasherbrum I unclimbed in winter. 5th March and 8th March he doesn't consider winter. He considers period between 1st december and 28th or 29th March as true winter for Himalayas and Karakoram. So he doesn't consider Polish expedition which reached Broad peak top on 5th MArch being winter.


In reference to Urubko citizenship you are right, no doubts he feels he is Russian. That's way I said about 9 Polish first winter attempts to achieve 8000m summits. Two others were made by Urubko.
Winter period?- I know his opinion and have never heard about the same coming from other person / entity/ organisation.
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26 Jan 2018 22:02

The numbers tell the difference in the nature of the challenges the two mountains pose.

Everest has been climbed by a Japanese octogenarian, who already had summited at ages 70 and 75 (the latter a record age at the time). He was prompted to make a third attempt at age 80 because a Nepali man (who was the elder by 16 months) broke his record by summiting while aged 76. Expecting the Nepali to break his record yet again, he was planning a fourth attempt for age 90 but their impromptu contest ended last year when the Nepali, then aged 85, died at Everest base camp from a suspected heart attack.

The oldest man to have summited K2 was aged 65, during the 2004 season when there was an unusually large number of support personnel on the mountain because they were commemorating the 50th anniversary of its first conquest in 1954. In the 49 years previous, only 198 climbers had summited. That season there was something of a "glut" of 40+ summits, 14 in one day. The oldest woman to summit K2 was aged 52.

234 climbers summited Everest on one day in 2012. At such times traffic jams are common at route bottlenecks, particularly places like "the Chinese ladder." Seven men aged at least 65 have summited Everest, including Sir Ranulph Fiennes. A Japanese woman has summited Everest at age 63 and again at 73. Five men aged at least 70 have made seven summits between them.
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26 Jan 2018 23:32

Unfortunately in a few hours we will have a rescue expedition. 4-5 members od K2 team will be transported to Nanga Parbat (8125 m.) slopes to help a French woman Elisabeth Revol and my countryman Tomasz Mackiewicz. It was her 4th and his 7th! attempt in a row to achieve Nanga Parbat summit in winter. Rescue team should be transported by Pakistan army heli to the level of ca. 6200 m., but nothing is so sure - the weather forecast shows the wind between 80 to 100 km/h on Saturday morning...
Last edited by Bot. Sky_Bot on 28 Jan 2018 12:56, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

27 Jan 2018 08:48

Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:
Kokoso wrote:
Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:There have been only 3 serious attempts so far to climb K2 in winter, all failed below 8000 meters due to bad weather. The highest level ever reached is 7.650 meters (by 3 Poles) - their summit attempt was suddenly stopped beacuse of the medical reasons. Two of the Poles (Marcin Kaczkan and Denis Urubko) are members of today's expedition, but the third, Piotr Morawski died in 2009 climbing Dhaulagiri.

Unfortunately himalaism is full of real tragedies. On 5th of March 2013 four Polish climbers reached first time in winter in history Broad Peak (8.051 m.).

You are ot entirely right on this. Denis Urubko was Kazakh back when they've reached 7650 meers. He renounced Kazakh citizenship in 2012 and got Russian citizenship. In 2015 he received Polish citizenship but hardly he can be considered Pole.

Interestingly, Urubko considers Broad Peak and Gasherbrum I unclimbed in winter. 5th March and 8th March he doesn't consider winter. He considers period between 1st december and 28th or 29th March as true winter for Himalayas and Karakoram. So he doesn't consider Polish expedition which reached Broad peak top on 5th MArch being winter.


In reference to Urubko citizenship you are right, no doubts he feels he is Russian. That's way I said about 9 Polish first winter attempts to achieve 8000m summits. Two others were made by Urubko.
Winter period?- I know his opinion and have never heard about the same coming from other person / entity/ organisation.

"Two of the Poles (Marcin Kaczkan and Denis Urubko)"

Than why have you said this, knowing Urubko is Russian?
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Re: Himalaism - Polish K2 winter expedition

27 Jan 2018 18:10

Yes, you are right, in 2002/2003 he was Kazakh.
Taking into account what is going on just now at Nanga Parbat- from my side end of useless discussion.
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27 Jan 2018 19:23

I think what's important here, and the topic of discussion is the actual winter Himalayan expedition, not the technical aspects of where the climbers are from.

Climbing K2 in the winter is certainly worthy of lengthy discussion, I look forward to hearing any updates on their exploits.
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28 Jan 2018 12:53

French himalaist Elisabeth Revol is survived!

Yesterday at 17.50 local time a heli with rescue expedition (Adam Bielecki, Denis Urubko, Jarosław Botor and Piotr Tomala) landed at 4.850 m of Nanga Parbat (8.126 m). Because of bad weather condition there was no chance to organize transport earlier. Jarosław and Piotr stayed at 4.850 m to establish a camp.
Immediately Adam and Denis started climbing Kinshofer route in darkness and after 4.5 hours of climbing at 22.30 reached 5.900 m level. But then they faced 100m completely vertical wall.

Finally on Sunday, at 01.50 am local time they reached 6.100 m and found Elisebeth!

Adam and Denis decided to get down with Elisabeth to 4.850 m. They couldn’t split, might either left Elisabeth or tried to climb to Tomasz Mackiewicz. But because of coming snowstorm, increasing wind and agonal state of Tomasz there was hardly any chance to help him. Adam, Denis and Elisabeth reached the camp at 11 am. Finally, rescue expedition and Elisabeth were transported by heli at 15.40 local time.

____________________________
The final attack of Elisabeth Revol and Tomasz Mackiewicz at Nanga Parbat took place on Thursday. On Friday morning they started to get down but had huge trouble because of their sicknesses. They were burnt-out, with hardly any food and a lot of frost-bites at legs and hands. Tomasz also had snow blindness. Wind chill temperature was c.a. -60C.
Elisabeth decided to leave Tomasz in tent at 7.200 m. He was in agonal state, couldn’t even move. She was crawling tens of hours and get down to 6100 m but had no chances to challenge 100m vertical wall.
.
______________________________
Elisabeth Revol is going to a hospital in Islamabad. Adam Bielecki, Denis Urubko, Jarosław Botor and Piotr Tomala are coming back to K2 base camp. It’s considered that Adam and Denis are the only ones of current expedition who may challenge K2 in winter. The extremely high pace of climbing above 8000m (so called death zone) is a crucial point of success. Also are considered to be the best current himalaists in the world (others are an Italian Simone Moro and a Basque Alex Txikon).
______________________________
Tomasz Mackiewicz was 42. He was married, had 4 childs. It was his 7th attempt to achieve Nanga Parbat. According to still unproven information, finally, 3 days ago, Tomasz and Elisabeth managed to achieve Nanga Parbat summit…! He will probably stay at his lovely Nanga Parbat for ever. RIP Tomasz!
______________________________
Here you have additional information, as well as photos and films, in Tweets in both languages, Polish and English:
http://212.237.52.192/index.html
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28 Jan 2018 16:57

There was an article on the BBC about the Polish group earlier this morning - in order to rescue the French woman and her climbing partner did they have to abandon before they summited? Are they still going to try because they still have a base camp at K2? I'm not very clear on that.

It's sad Tomasz Mackiewicz couldn't be found and rescued due to the treacherous conditions, but unfortunately that's just the way of the mountaineering world.
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Re:

28 Jan 2018 17:41

Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:Here you have additional information, as well as photos and films, in Tweets in both languages, Polish and English:
http://212.237.52.192/index.html
I've been reading some of the English tweets, one says:

"Proud to be polish, shame to be french, greedy like"

:confused:

What is the general feeling of the Polish posts? Are they what I would call reasonable, or are they blaming the French climber as well?
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Re:

28 Jan 2018 18:18

Tricycle Rider wrote:There was an article on the BBC about the Polish group earlier this morning - in order to rescue the French woman and her climbing partner did they have to abandon before they summited? Are they still going to try because they still have a base camp at K2? I'm not very clear on that.

It's sad Tomasz Mackiewicz couldn't be found and rescued due to the treacherous conditions, but unfortunately that's just the way of the mountaineering world.



There was no chance to help Tomasz, there is no proven information if Elisabeth and Tomasz achieved the summit...
At K2 there is a Base Camp with fully equipment (4900m) and so far other established camps (let say - only just one or two tents!) at the level of 5900 (C1) and 6300 m (C2). Adam spent two nights at C2, Denis - just one night at C1 and one at C2. So they haven't had so far enough acclimatisation to even try to achieve higher level than c.a. 6500-6800m. Climbing higher (at Tomasz level - 7200 m.) would be so far extremely dangerous in such weather condition for them.
If perfect condition Adam or Denis will have to:
- wait if somebody from the expedition establishes C3 at 6700-6800m;
- spend at least one night at new established C3;
- after that - rest at Base Camp at least 2-3 days (at the same time other climbers are trying to set C4);
- spend at least one night at ca 7400-7600 m (new established C4);
- after that - rest at Base Camp but in fact they should even get down to lower level - even below Base Camp.
So they have enough acclimatisation..

After that they will have to wait for at least 3-4 days period of weather with the wind weaker than 50-60 km/h (temperature with no wind is constant: (-50)-(-60)C.
And we finally have the final attack, they will have to:
- achieve C2 from Base camp in Day1;
- achieve C4 from C2 in Day 2;
- leave C4 to establish their own C5 at ca 8000m.
- spend just a few hours for rest at C5 (we have Winter Death Zone higher than 8000m) and leave it in the midle of the night to achieve the summit during a day;
- get down as quickly as possible to spend night at C4 or C3.
Nobody did it at K2............
Last edited by Bot. Sky_Bot on 28 Jan 2018 19:55, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Re:

28 Jan 2018 19:01

Tricycle Rider wrote:
Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:Here you have additional information, as well as photos and films, in Tweets in both languages, Polish and English:
http://212.237.52.192/index.html
I've been reading some of the English tweets, one says:

"Proud to be polish, shame to be french, greedy like"

:confused:

What is the general feeling of the Polish posts? Are they what I would call reasonable, or are they blaming the French climber as well?


Well it's not so simple to answer your post, but if I must:
- nobody in Poland, even Tomasz's family, is blaming Elisabeth, absolutely not. She had to leave him in a tent at ca 7200 to survive her life. He wasn't able to make any step. What is highlighted - she probably left him all the food they had. There is no questions about it in Polish media;
- According to Polish media: yesterday Polish embassy in Pakistan organised the transport, as well as today. Polish government paid for it. There was a few hours delay in organising a rescue expedition beacuse of financial expectations of Pakistan entities..;
- yes, yesterday there were some posts in Polish media that France is not interested in surviving a French citizen and that there was hardly any information about the whole rescue expedition in French media..;
- today there were information that France thanked Polish entities for surviving a French citizen.
_________
Edit: And finally Elisabeth Revol was received by French Ambassador and Pakistani ofiicials at Islamabad airport.
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28 Jan 2018 22:03

I have read a little about this climb and each time I read about a success or attempt I think about technology and technique.. With the latest materials and data you would think that it would be easier.. it's not..
I think about the earliest mountaineering pioneers w cotton, wool and almost nothing electric.. everyone who does it is awesome, but the folks wearing boots smeared w animal fat are crazy courageous
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Re:

28 Jan 2018 22:39

Irondan wrote:I think what's important here, and the topic of discussion is the actual winter Himalayan expedition, not the technical aspects of where the climbers are from.

Climbing K2 in the winter is certainly worthy of lengthy discussion, I look forward to hearing any updates on their exploits.


Because of all the amazing interest / attention of this thread / of the people who risks their lifes to save another ones:
Irondan / or other Admins - could you please immediately delete my account and as well this thread? - thank you.
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Re: Re:

28 Jan 2018 23:25

Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:
Irondan wrote:I think what's important here, and the topic of discussion is the actual winter Himalayan expedition, not the technical aspects of where the climbers are from.

Climbing K2 in the winter is certainly worthy of lengthy discussion, I look forward to hearing any updates on their exploits.


Because of all the amazing interest / attention of this thread / of the people who risks their lifes to save another ones:
Irondan / or other Admins - could you please immediately delete my account and as well this thread? - thank you.
Obviously not an admin, but have to ask -

Why would you want this done? :confused:
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28 Jan 2018 23:29

Because there is no sense to be here.
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Re:

28 Jan 2018 23:35

Bot. Sky_Bot wrote:Because there is no sense to be here.
Well, that's a bit cryptic. Perhaps it's a bit of a language barrier thingy, so if you could run me through this whole exchange again...

Why do you want for your account and this thread to be deleted? Be as specific as you can be, please.
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