Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Winter Climbs 2014: Acclimatizing And Waiting On Nanga Parbat

It has been about a week since I posted my last update on the winter expeditions to Nanga Parbat. During that time, very little has changed as the climbers watch the sky and hope for a weather window to open. The days are spend reading forecasts and hoping for a glimpse of the summit, but at the moment it is shrouded in clouds and more elusive than ever.

On the Rupal face, the teams went as high as 7000 meters before powerful winds and unpredictable weather forced them back to Base Camp. That's where they are now, waiting for their opportunity to come. Last week there was some thought that the weather might clear early in the week, giving the teams a shot at going for the summit. The Polish Justice For All team even talked about moving up to be in position to make a possible summit bid. At the moment, it doesn't seem that that weather has relented at all, so they remain in BC. It looks like it could be the weekend before there is any chance of things breaking up, so once again patience is proving to be their strongest quality.

Also in BC, is the North Face squad led by Simone Moro. Their latest updates indicate they've been resting and trying hard not to obsess over weather report, while visiting with their friendly neighbors. The two groups swap stories, share experiences, and offer insights to this formidable mountain that they have all come to conquer. Whether or not they'll actually get a chance to stand on the summit remains to be seen.

Over on the Diamir route, Italian climber Daniele Nardi hasn't been resting on his laurels in Base Camp. He arrived there just last week and immediately went to work on his acclimatization process. He's been climbing and skiing on nearby Ganalo Peak, and he seems happy with his progress thus far. Once he finishes the process of getting his body ready for the higher altitudes, he will launch his attempt at a solo summit in alpine style. That is probably still a week or two away from starting, but he seems to be making good progress, despite surprisingly steep glaciers and more crevasses on the mountain this year.

That's about all there is to report at the moment. The teams are mostly waiting for the weather to improve, and in the meantime they are resting, eating and preparing to go back up the mountain. Hopefully things will clear soon and they resume the climb.

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