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Asia, U.S.S.R., Pik Lenin, Pamir Mountains

Pik Lenin, Pamir Mountains. After fifteen years of attempting to get permission, an Austrian expedition was finally allowed to leave for the Pamirs on July 21 under the joint leadership of Erich Vanis and Franz Huber. The other members were Karl Kosa, Peter Lavicka, Erwin Weilguny, Fritz Grimmlinger, Adolf Huber, Richard Hoyer, Dr. Klaus Kubiena, Franz Michlmayr, Hans Schönberger, Helmut Wagner, Rolf Walter and Adolf Weissensteiner. After arriving on July 25 at Osh in the Kirgiz SSR, they traveled 150 miles south by truck on the Transpamir Highway to a point some 45 miles from the Chinese frontier, where they established Base Camp at 12,000 feet under the northern slopes of Pik Lenin. This 23,406-foot peak was eventually climbed by all but one of the Austrians. For acclimatization they broke into four groups, three of which each climbed a different mountain of about 15,500 feet; the fourth reconnoitered the northern slopes of the Krylenko Pass, to which Lenin’s northeast ridge descends. Camp I was placed at 14,500 feet below the pass and Camp II much higher at 19,095 feet at the summit of the pass. Several members of the expedition climbed Pik Spartak (20,026 feet); Vanis, Lavicka, and Grimmlinger continued from there along the long northwest ridge to the top of Pik Edunstwa (21,894 feet) in the Sulumart chain. August 12 through 14 Hoyer, Kosa and Weilguny made the first ascent of Pik Lenin’s east face by climbing a 6000-foot ice rib. Adolf Huber, Michlmayr and Weissensteiner traversed Pik Lenin from the Krylenko Pass, ascending the northeast ridge—Camp III was at 22,300 feet—and descending the northwest ridge and continuing on over Pik Rasdelnaja (20,170 feet) and two other lesser peaks. On August 15 Vanis and Lavicka made the second ascent of the 6500-foot north face, first climbed by Russians in 1958. Rolf Walter climbed Pik Lenin from Krylenko Pass in one day, repeating the 1928 feat of the first ascent party of Schneider, Allwein and Wien. Bad weather then cut operations short.

Pik Lenin, Pamirs. Emilio Frisia, Nino Oppio and Giorgio Gualco, Italians, climbed in the Pamirs during July and August. They made an ascent of Pik Lenin (23,406 feet).