American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Pakistan, Tirich-North and Ghul-Lasht-Zom

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1966

Tirich-North and Ghul-Lasht-Zom. The Austrians Kurt Diemberger, his wife Maria Antonia, Herwig Handler, and Fritz Lindner left Chitral on August 2, ascended the Chitral valley and crossed the Zani Pass to Shagrom. They went up the Tirich Glacier to Base Camp at 16,400 feet, which they pitched on August 9 at the foot of the steep northern spur of Tirich-North, the highest (westernmost) summit of the northern Tirich group, the ridge which runs east and west some three miles north of Tirich Mir. After a quick reconnaissance showed that this mountain would be of considerable difficulty, they turned to the Ghul-Lasht-Zom group until they should be better acclimated. They moved their base some two miles west. On August 14 they camped at 18,000 feet on a tributary glacier that descends to the east from the eastern summit of Ghul-Lasht-Zom. Camp II was placed the 18th on its southwest ridge at 20,700 feet. The next day the three men climbed to the eastern summit (21,680 feet) but bad weather prevented advance toward the main peak. A pair of crampons had been left behind at Camp I and so Diemberger descended to rejoin his wife there. Together they climbed a 20,000-foot peak just south of Ghul-Lasht-Zom’s eastern summit. Handler and Lindner meanwhile returned to this eastern peak and traversed on to the main summit (21,867 feet). Reconnaissance of the west side of the Tirich- North group revealed avalanche danger and no obvious route. They returned to attack its northern spur. This ridge rose from Base Camp some 3500 feet up steep mixed rock and snow and for an equal distance to the summit on snow. Camp I was placed at 18,000 feet on August 27. Several difficult rock steps above necessitated fixed ropes. Camp was carried up with them as they worked their way gradually upwards until they were finally established at 20,350 feet above the rock on September 3. On the 4th, the three men climbed the steep snow to the summit (23,150 feet).

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