American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Nepal, Lhotse, Winter Attempt

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1982

Lhotse, Winter Attempt. An Italian expedition attempted a winter ascent of Lhotse. The members were Pier Antonio Camozzi, leader, Agostino Da Polenza, Uberto Testa, Graziano Bianchi, Mauricio San- tinello and Dr. Felice Boselli. After delays in the customs and in flying in, they arrived at Lukla on January 1 and at Base Camp on January 6. They used two Sherpas primarily in the Icefall and two others to carry to Camp II. Camp I was established on January 16 and Camp II on the 20th. On January 28, after an attempt to reach the South Col, they heard on their radio that the Japanese were giving up their Everest attempt because of wind and cold. The Italians found the Lhotse Face more difficult in winter since the snow was blown off, exposing bare ice. On January 29, two Italians climbed to 24,775 feet, where they established Camp III. The Sherpas refused to help above Camp II. On February 1, in a comparative calm, the two climbed to the top of the Geneva Spur. They pitched a tent, left oxygen and advanced a few hundred meters along the nearly horizontal shelf that led to the couloir up which the normal route on Lhotse ascends. They were driven back by wind. The next day another attempt to cross failed at about 26,400 feet. Da Polenza reported that he could see that the 1500-foot couloir was nearly devoid of snow. The last 650 feet would have been extremely difficult ice and rock. They gave up. All were back in Base Camp on February 3.

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