American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Pakistan, Gasjerbrum II, All-Women's Ascent

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1990

Gasherbrum II, All-Women’s Ascent. The first all-women’s team from Britain to an 8000er was composed of Rhona Lampard, leader, Brede Arkless, Geraldine Westrupp, Kathy Bainbridge, Becky Thorp, Dr. Sally Churcher and as a guest from Poland, Wanda Rutkiewicz. They climbed the normal route without bottled oxygen and without male support, although they cooperated with other parties. Base Camp was established on May 30. Camps were set up at 6050 and 6550 meters. A shocking experience was the sight of the dead body of Gary Silver lying in his sleeping bag at the top of the fixed lines at 7000 meters, where he collapsed on June 9, 1988. They started the summit push on July 7 and established Camp II from which on July 12 Lampard and Rutkiewicz reached the summit. Bainbridge accompanied them to 7700 meters, where she turned back. The next day a second team had to withdraw because of high-altitude problems. The weather conditions were bad; during six weeks they enjoyed only ten days without storm and snowfall. Wanda Rutkiewicz filmed the entire climbing, including summit scenes. This was her fifth 8000er, the most any woman has yet achieved.

JÓzef Nyka, Editor, Taternik, Poland

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