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Asia, Afghanistan, Shkurigal Valley, Bashgal, Central Hindu Kush

Shkurigal Valley, Bashgal, Central Hindu Kush. Peter Ball, John Davies, Robert Junkison, Ali Kellas, Barry Smith and I had as aims a new route on a 6000-meter peak and first ascents of 5000-meter peaks in the Bashgal valley area. Base Camp was set up at 11,500 feet in the Shkurigal valley, a tributary of the Bashgal. Five weeks of almost perfect weather helped us to achieve more than these aims. The mountains were attacked alpine style and covered a wide range of difficulty. A report is to be published later giving full details of each route. The climbs are indicated by number on the sketch map. The first ascents have one asterisk (*) and the new routes two (**). The ascents follow: 1. P 5480* (17,979 feet) via west couloir on July 5 by Junkison, Kellas; 2. Koh-i- Ainshval (18,455 feet) via west ridge by Davies, Smith, Scott and 3. P 5219* (17,123 feet) via west ridge by Ball, both on July 10; traverse of 4. Koh-i-Tundy Shagai Sha** (20,082 feet) via north face, 5. P c5700* (18,701 feet), 6. P 5715* (18,750 feet), 7. P c5700* (18,701 feet), 8. P c5700* (18,701 feet) and 9. P 5557* (18,232 feet) via west ridges all on July 10 and 11 by Junkison, Kellas; 10. P 5265* (17,273 feet) via south ridge by Ball, Scott and 11. P 5068* (16,628 feet) via south ridge by Davies, Smith both on July 15; 12. P 5107 (16,755 feet) via northeast ridge on July 16 by Davies, Smith; traverse of 13. Allival** (cl9,029 feet) via north ridge, 14. Koh-i-Askival (19,259 feet) via south ridge and 15. Trollval* (cl8,701 feet) via southeast ridge on July 16 to 18 by Junkison, Kellas; 16. P 5637** (18,494 feet) via east face on July 21 by Smith; 17. N.F. 13** (19,295 feet) via northeast ridge on July 21 by Ball, Scott; 18. P c5570* (18,295 feet) via northwest ridge on July 23 by Ball, Scott; 3. P 5219 via west ridge and 19. P 5064* (16,614 feet) via northeast ridge both on July 25 by Davies, Smith; 20. Koh-i-Marchech** (20,998 feet)1 via northeast ridge on July 25 by Junkison, Kellas; 21. Koh-i-Morusq** (21,111 feet) via south face on July 26 by Junkison, Kellas; 22. P c5700* (18,701 feet) via southwest ridge on July 31 by Davies, Smith, Scott, Ball; 23. P 5590 (18,340 feet) via northwest ridge on August 1 by Ball, Davies, Smith, Scott; 24. Shakh-i-Kabud (20,309 feet) via east ridge on August 1 by Junkison, Kellas; 25. P c5775* (18,947 feet) via northwest ridge on August 2 by Junkison, Kellas; traverse of 20. Koh-i-Marchech via southwest ridge on August 6 and 21. Koh-i-Morusq via southwest face on August 7 by Ball, Scott; 26. P 4980* (16,339 feet) via east face on August 6 by Davies; 27. P 5154 (16,910 feet) via east face on August 7 by Davies; traverse of 28. P c5500** (18,209 feet) via east ridge, 29. P c5600 (18,373 feet, 30. P c5600 (18,373 feet) and 16. P 5637 the last three via south ridges on August 7 and 8 by Junkison, Kellas and Smith.

RICHARD SCOTT, England

1 Carl Smith, who made a careful study of altitudes in 1970, feels that the official Afghan altitude of 6400+ meters (20,998+ feet) for Koh-i-Marchech is too high and suggests 6150 meters (20,177 feet) as more realistic. See A.A.J., 1971, 17:2 pp 463–5.