American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Tibet, Shisha Pangma Central (West) Summit Illegally Climbed by East Germans

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

Shisha Pangma Central (West) Summit Illegally Climbed by East Germans. Traveling on next-to-no money (we each spent the equivalent of US $700 on the whole trip from East Germany and back), Winfried Kraus, Dr. Karsten König, Fräulein Sabine Körbs and I eluded Chinese authorities and reached our Shisha Pangma Base Camp on May 7. We had to go around the official Base Camp where there were the Chinese liaison officers. Despite very inadequate, homemade equipment, we three men climbed on the normal route to 7500 meters, where we felt too weak to continue on this first attempt. We returned to Camp I at 5800 meters. Several days later, on May 25, König and I again were back in Camp III at 7350 meters and the following day ascended to the slightly lower central summit, along with members of an international expedition. The conditions and the hour were such that we declined to climb to the main summit. [Editor’s Note: While we may admire their ingenuity in getting to the mountain and climbing to the central summit, we deplore all illegal ascents which cannot fail to cause difficulties for those climbers who do go through normal channels.]

Reinhardt Tauchnitz, Leipzig, East Germany

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