American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Tibet, Cho Oyu

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1989

Cho Oyu. Our expedition, Ugo and Gerolamo Gianola, Erma Pomoni, Flavio Spazzadeschi, Sandro Benzoni, Dr. Giuliano De Marchi, Lino Zani and I as leader, climbed Cho Oyu by the normal northwest side. We reached Tingri on April 10, where we spent four days acclimatizing. On April 14 Ugo and Gerolamo Gianola had to go back temporarily to the border village of Khasa with altitude problems. Dr. De Marchi accompanied them. The rest of us reached Base Camp at 4860 meters by truck that same day. On the 16th, supported by yak transport, we left for Advance Base, which was installed on April 20 at 5350 meters. After Gerolamo Gianola’s return on April 19, on the 24th he had to descend to Base Camp with retinal hemorrhages. Benzoni also had to withdraw because of altitude problems. We established Camp I at 6000 meters just at the base of the mountain on April 21 and Camp II at 6500 meters just below the icefall on the ridge on the 25th. On April 30, De Marchi, Zani and Spazzadeschi ascended with one tent to 7000 meters at the top of the icefall. I stayed one more day at Camp II, hoping to ascend the next day to a proposed camp at 7400 meters with Pomoni and Ugo Gianola. On May 1, instead of raising the camp, the other three left early for the summit, which they reached between four and six P.M. I ascended solo to 7000 meters, where I waited for my friends to return from the summit; they were back at midnight. At one A.M. on May 2,I left for the summit in the moonlight. It was extremely cold and windy, but I was on top at nine A.M. and back in Camp III at noon, where my friends were waiting for me. I decided to spend one more night at Camp III but was caught for 36 hours in a bad storm. I was not back in Base Camp until May 5. No more summit attempts were made.

Oreste Forno, Club Alpino Italiano

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