Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Clarification On Alpine Style Everest Attempt By Urubko and Bolotov

Last week I posted a story on some of the upcoming winter Himalayan climbs that included an attempt on Everest by Denis Urubko and Alexey Bolotov. At the time that I wrote that story it was believed that the attempt would take place during the winter, but it turns out it will actually be a spring 2013 climb instead.

Obviously climbing in the spring will give the expedition a greater chance of success as it will be challenging enough without having to deal with the extreme winter conditions. Urubko and Bolotov will be making the climb in alpine style along a new route, which should prove to be difficult enough.

An alpine style climb is in direct contrast to a typical Himalayan ascent. Rather than building a series of camps in preset locations on the mountain and spending time acclimatizing at each one, Denis and Alexey will instead carry all of their own gear and camp at different locations as they go. Details for the climb will likely be made more clear in the spring, but presumably they'll acclimatize on another peak first and then move to the new route on Everest.

In a recent interview, Denis shared some thoughts on what climbing in alpine style means to him and how challenging he expects this climb to be. You can read that interview here but if you don't speak Russian,  you'll need to use Google Translate to convert it to English. At the end of the story Denis notes that he is looking to summit around mid-May.

I'm sure we'll hear a lot more about this climb next spring when the two climbers are actually in the Himalaya and attempting the new route. This will be a breath of fresh air bridging a different approach to the climb and potentially opening a new route. Exciting stuff for a mountain that has been climbed thousands of times in the past.

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