American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Pakistan, Mount Ghent, Karakoram

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1962

Mount Ghent, Karakoram. An Austrian expedition under the leadership of Erich Waschak reached Base Camp on the Kondus Glacier at 13,750 feet in early May. Camp I (14,750 feet) was on the left lateral moraine of the glacier. On May 10 they established Camp II at 17,000 feet on the slopes below the Sia La. All of the climbers crossed this pass on May 19 to establish Raimund Heinzel and Wolfgang Axt at Camp III. From there these two made the second ascent of c. 22,640-foot Silver Throne. (First ascent in 1960 by Senn and Anderl. A.A.J., 1961, 12:1, p. 416.) Camp IV was at 22,300 feet, and it was from there that on the fourth attempt, the successful climb of Mount Ghent (24,280 feet) was made. Wolfgang Axt started at 2:30 a.m. on June 4 and climbed on breakable crust to a rock ridge, which after an hour and a half’s climbing turned into a snow ridge. This in turn merged into a steep slope, covered partly by ice and partly by breakable crust. He circumvented crevasses and séracs on even steeper snow slopes before he climbed a gradually steepening ridge, which he finally had to turn to the right to reach the summit at 12:30 in rapidly deteriorating weather. He was back in Camp IV at five with his comrades Karl Ambichl and Ignaz Obermüller, who had come up to support him. They had to quit after this since their permission did not allow them to attempt peaks which could not be reached from the Kondus Glacier.

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