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Asia, India, Himachal Pradesh, Kishtwar Himal

Kishtwar Himal. An expedition comprising Simon and Elizabeth Brown, Pete Butler, Nicki and Jane Clough, Rob and Netti Collister and, for a short time, a liaison officer, was in the Padar region, based on Athole (Arthal), during September and October with the object of climbing Brammah II. We could not find a viable approach and failed to set foot on the mountain. A route into the Kijai Nullah from the east via the village of Ligri proved impossible. The route into and up the Kijai Nullah from the south via La was investigated at the end and found long and difficult and impracticable for loaded men unless a way was first cleared with machetes. Seen from the east the north face and ridge appear to be the only feasible route up Brammah II. The 18,375-foot col below the north face was eventually reached from the steep Donali Glacier to the north by traversing from the top of the steep Donali-Kizae col (17,060 feet) across the north face of P 5865. It is also possible to descend the snow bowl at the head of the Kijai Glacier (two abseils at the bottom; V.S. pitches in ascent) and climb an easy icefall to reach the same point. We had some lucky escapes from avalanches while descending the 17,060-foot col for more food; this led to the route being abandoned. Two of the party returned to Kishtwar via the Kiar Nullah, crossing a 16,750-foot col (first found by Fritz Kolb in 1946) between the Bhazun and Wakbal glacier systems. On the way, P 5685 (18,651 feet) was climbed. (See Fritz Kolb, “Third Choice, Adventures in the Padar Region,” Himalayan Journal, 1947 and map by John Harriss, Alpine Journal, 1970.)

Robert Collister, Alpine Club