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Asia, Nepal, Kangchenjunga, North Face Attempt

Kangchenjunga, North Face Attempt. Terry Tremble, Dr. Carol Brand-Maher and I attempted to climb the north face of Kangchenjunga. Dr. Brand-Maher had no prior experience in mountaineering. The walk-in from Hille to Pang Pema with 33 porters took 15 days. We arrived at Base Camp on August 31. Camp I was a temporary one on the glacier. Camp II was in the usual place. From there Tremble and I climbed between the north ridge and the north face, fixing 100 meters of rope on the ice cliffs below Camp III. We fixed another 500 meters above to the ridge where the site of Camp IV was reached on September 30. Our first summit attempt was called off on October 10 at 7500 meters below the rock step on the north ridge when Tremble developed altitude sickness. We returned safely. A second try was aborted on October 17 with the arrival of the huge storm. Thereafter there was very deep snow and high winds. Our third attempt failed at the base of the ice cliffs where an avalanche had wrecked our fixed ropes and we had no equipment left to reclimb the cliffs. We left Base Camp on October 26. While at Base Camp, we made serial measurements of blood viscosities. The rise was much greater than had been predicted. We retrieved an ice axe with the name of Gunter Dyhrenfurth on the head and the remains of a short person in prewar clothing, who we assume to be the Sherpa who died in the 1930 attempt.

James van Gelder, Australia