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Asia, Pakistan, Latok III Attempt

Latok III Attempt. Our baggage arrived 65 days late because of engine trouble of our freighter and we were 35 days late in establishing Base Camp on August 1 at 14,100 feet on the east bank of the Baintha Lukpar Glacier. We therefore missed the good weather of July and were forced to climb under severe conditions. And, when our visas finally expired, we had to give up the ascent still some 1500 feet below the summit. We were Satoshi Ikenuma, Shigeru Ogawa, Yukito Ito, Hironubu Kamuro, Shiro Ishiyama and I as leader. It was eight miles from Base Camp to the base of Latok III and on this section we placed 3500 feet of fixed rope along a knife-edge. Camp III (Advanced Base) was set up on a snowcap at 18,375 feet. Two weeks of struggle up rock (up to F9) and ice walls got us to 20,000 feet. We placed Camp IV on a terrace there on September 8. Above, we climbed up the left side of the southeast face but were driven back by storms. On September 14 we got to 21,325 feet but were again driven back by a blizzard. On September 19 a police officer arrived to tell us to pack up, as our visas were expiring.

Makoto Hara, Japanese Alpine Club