AAC Publications - http://publications.americanalpineclub.org

Asia, India—Garhwal, Kedarnath Dome, To the Top of the East Face

Kedamath Dome, To the Top of the East Face. We believe that the east face of Kedarnath Dome had never before been successfully climbed. Our climbing members were Dr. Walter Kraft, Gábor Babcsân, Szabolcs Szebdrö, Janós Singer, Gabor Berecz and I as leader. We fixed 850 meters of rope on the 1300-meter-high wall and also used ropes left in place by a previous English party. The latter amounted to 500 meters on the lower third, mostly on snow. We had two camps on the wall. The lower was in a snow cave at 5400 meters, in which we stored equipment and food. This was totally covered by a heavy snowfall; we had to search for it for two-and-a-half days and luckily found it. The rock face was beautiful. In October, the days were cold and short. We moved quickly to ascend rock of UIAA difficulty from V to VII—to place a camp at 5800 meters. Because of an accident and health problems, above there the climbing party was reduced to two people. My partner was Szendrö. When he was younger, he lost his left knee in an accident and now climbs with a prosthesis. At 43 years, he did a fantastic performance during our four-day final attack. Above Camp II, the rock was excellent. We climbed free 90% of the wall. At the top of the wall, at 6200 meters, we bivouacked on October 20 without sleeping bags or food in a temperature of—20° C. We did not follow the snow ridge to Kedamath Dome’s summit (6831 meters, 22,410 feet), which would have taken us a full day without technical difficulties.

Attila OzsvÁth, Hungary