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Asia, Nepal, Kangbachen

Kangbachen. Our expedition was in the mountains from April 16 till May 31. Our members were Piotr Mlotecki, leader, Wojeciech Branski, Andrezej Gardas, Wieslaw Klaput, Marek Malatynski, Jósef Olszewski, Maciej Piatkowski, Dr. Andrezej Pietraszek, Marek Rogalski, Zbigniew Rubinowski, Andrezej Sobolewski, Zbigniew Staszyszyn, Andrezej Strumitko, Szymon Wdowiak, Liaison Officer Captain Birbadur Jondzun and I as deputy leader. Our purpose was to climb virgin Kangbachen from the Ramtang valley. We established the following camps: Base Camp at 16,250 feet on April 16, Camp I at 17,725 feet on April 28, Camp II at 19,200 feet on the ridge separating the Ramtang and Jannu glaciers on May 1, Camp III at 20,850 feet on May 6 and Camp IV at 22,300 feet on May 21. Between Camps III and IV was a 500-foot high system of sérac barriers and pinnacles. It took six days to fix 650 feet of rope on this difficult section. We climbed the peak (25,925 feet) on May 26 at 11:20 A.M. The summit team consisted of Branski, Klaput, Malatynski, Rubinowski and me. Our attack was carried out without oxygen from Camp IV with alpine tactics. Three bivouacs were needed and we carried the necessary bivouac equipment to 24,450 feet. Kangbachen was first attempted in 1930 by G.O. Dyhrenfurth’s expedition to Kangchenjunga and then in 1949 by Swiss. It was tried again in 1965 by Yugoslavs and in 1973 by Japanese.

Kazimierz W. Olech, Klub Wysokogórski, Poland