American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Pakistan, Broad Peak North

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1991

Broad Peak North. Our expedition of firemen from Tarragona took twelve days to get to Base Camp at 4900 meters, having difficulties with the porters and the sirdar. The route we took was a repeat of that climbed by Poles Kurtyka and Kukuczka in 1984. This lies on the northwest face to the right of the sharp north spur followed by Casarotto on his first ascent in 1983. Our members were Augustí Gatell, Gabriel Gutiérrez, Joan Sole, Joaquim Fontoba, Josep Antón Macón, Oscar Cadiach, Antoní Paz and I as leader. We made a supply dump at the base of the couloir at 5000 meters and another at a bend in it at 5500 meters. The couloir rose at 45° at first and then at 55° to 60°. We placed Camp I at 6000 meters where we began the traverse on mixed terrain left from the couloir to the ridge crest, fixing 1000 meters of rope between 5500 and 6500 meters. Cadiach, Gutiérrez and Fontaba spent the night of July 23 at Camp I. They then placed a bivouac at 6500 meters during the final alpine-style summit climb the next night. On July 25, they climbed the ridge in a succession of couloirs between great gendarmes for 500 meters to reach the final slopes. They then had to surmount a 100-meter-high tower, a 40-meter chimney and 15 meters of 80° ice to reach the summit (7587 meters, 24,892 feet). Cadiach climbed ahead of the other two, who had to give up 300 and 100 meters from the summit. He got to the top at three P.M. They bivouacked at 6800 meters on the descent and were back in Base Camp on July 26. Of the 25 days we were above Base Camp, there were never more than two consecutive days of good weather. This was the third ascent of the peak, where only four people have stood.

Angel Rifà, Firemen’s Cultural and Recreation Group

Tarragona, Spain

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