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Asia, Pakistan, Diran and Rakaposhi Ascents and Tragedy

Diran and Rakaposhi Ascents and Tragedy. There were three groups in this region in July and August, two smaller private parties and ours of the Upper Austria Alpine School. I was the leader of the Diran Group and Edi Koblmüller was the Rakaposhi leader. Our weather was excellent. From our 3650-meter Diran Base Camp we placed Camps I, II and III at 4900, 5500 and 6300 meters on the normal route. Between July 23 and 30, the summit (7266 meters, 23,840 feet) was reached by Fred Pressl, Heinz Thallinger, Roland Schulz, Edi Koblmüller, Ingo Granderath, Hungarian Istvan Katouna, Gerald Fellner, Nani Klappert, Herbert Spousta, Christi Stöger and me. Pressl and Koblmüller made the first descent of the north ridge on July 24. On July 27 we began to climb Rakaposhi East by the north buttress. After reconnaissance, we set out on July 30 on an alpine-style ascent from a 4500-meter Advance Base. From Bivouac I at 5500 meters to Bivouac II at 6000 meters, the route was up a 65° steep ice slope and a very exposed, sharp ridge. On August l Koblmüller, Pressl, Fellner and I reached the summit (7010 meters, 23,000 feet). We descended that day and the next in bad weather. At 4700 meters Fellner slipped and fell 100 meters down an ice slope. Despite medical attention, he died in the night.

Gerhard Haberl, Oberösterrichische Alpinschule, Austria