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Monday, December 12, 2016

Winter Climbs 2016: No Big Expeditions? Not So Fast!

Last week I posted a story about how there seemed to be dearth of winter expeditions scheduled for this year. As the time of that article, there hasn't been any major climbs announced on any of the 8000 meter peaks, which was somewhat understandable after the successful summit of Nanga Parbat last February, leaving K2 the only eight-thousander unclimbed during the coldest month of the year. But, it now seems that there is at least one big expedition planned, and it is headed to Everest.

While I haven't found any official announcement just yet, and the details are a bit sparse, I've heard from a reliable source that two Spanish climbers will attempt Everest from the South Side of the mountain in Nepal. The team will be supported by Seven Summits Treks and are expected to arrive in Kathmandu on December 23, two days after the official start of winter.

At this point, I don't even know who the two Spanish mountaineers are – although I have my suspicions – or exactly when they plan to arrive on the mountain. Hopefully we'll learn a few more details as we get closer to the start of the expedition, as it will certainly be an interesting climb to follow. I have put a few feelers out already to see if I can learn more details, which of course I'll share here on The Adventure Blog once they become clear. But, the bottom line is, it appears as if there will indeed be a major expedition to follow this winter after all, and it will be on the tallest mountain on the planet.

I wouldn't rule out learning about a few other winter expeditions as the season gets rolling either. Last year, Simone Moro and Tamara Lunger arrived on Nanga Parbat after most of the other teams were already in place, and kept their plans close to the vest up until they got to Base Camp. We could have a similar situation this season as well, with a few teams planning some daring climbs, but waiting until they depart for the mountains to reveal their plans. Either way, we'll at least be watching the events on Everest unfold in the days and weeks to come.

Stay tuned for more information as I'm able to uncover it.

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