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Asia, India–Garhwal, Kamet

Kamet. Our team included B.S. Vasudeva Murthy, B.G. Naganath, M.V. Rajeswari, R.M. Ashavathi, R.K. Anath, T.S. Badarinath, S. Srivatsa, B.R. Chandrasekhar, Dr. Vrushabhananda and me as leader. After obtaining the necessary inner-line and other permits, we left Joshimath on July 30 for the Malari roadhead. From Malari we trekked to Niti. The next day, after climbing 2000 feet from Niti, we faced the gushing cold waters of the Dhauli Ganga. A makeshift bridge was built to ferry men and material to the other bank. We reached Base Camp via Nanda Karak on August 2 at 15,500 feet at the confluence of the Raikana and East Kamet Glaciers. Camps I and II were set up at 16,600 and 17,200 feet on the East Kamet Glacier. Camp III was established on August 11 near the foot of Kamet at 18,700 feet. The route to Camp IV was up steep, rockfall-threatened terrain. This camp was placed on August 14 on a vast snowfield at 20,500 feet. The route to Camp V was on a sheer rock-and-ice slope where we fixed rope. It was located on August 19 at 22,700 feet. Camp VI was established on August 21 at 23,500 feet near Meade’s Col. On August 23, Murthy, Sherpas Lhakpa and Paldin and I left Camp VI and reached the summit at 1:35 P.M. Back at Camp VI Murthy and I were feeling pain in our fingers and toes from cold injury. The next morning we moved down to Camp IV. On the 25th, with the help of the rest of the members, we arrived at Camp III. The Sherpas had to carry me to Base Camp. I was evacuated by helicopter on August 30.

K.R. Lavaraju, Karnataka Mountaineering Association, India