American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Tibet, Shisha Pangma Attempt

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

Shisha Pangma Attempt. The 19-member expedition which Simonson led established Base Camp at the end of the road at 16,280 feet on September 20. Yaks transported our gear the 13 miles to Advance Base at 18,300 feet, established on September 25. Simonson was forced to descend from Camp I on September 30 by cerebral edema. We made rapid progress over the next ten days, establishing Camps I, II, III and IV on the Chinese route at 19,050, 20,900, 22,500 and 23,000 feet. Greg Wilson, Jean Ellis, John Cederholm, Doug Hansen and John Rehmer occupied Camp III on October 4 and descended for a rest. They were relieved by Jeff Shropshire, Dan Holle, Gary Dietrich, Gayle Olcott and Richard Wright, who occupied Camp III on the 6th. The ferrying of loads across the four-kilometer-wide plateau between Camps III and IV was particularly arduous without skis. Exhausted, Dietrich and Olcott descended. The other three were encouraged to make a summit attempt on October 8, but wind discouraged them and they too descended. On October 9, a vicious storm hit. On October 12, a team of Greg Wilson, Jean Ellis, Doug Hansen, Alan Lamb and John Rehmer began to move back up, but on the night of the 13th they were hit by a second snowstorm, which dumped several feet of snow. Because of the avalanche danger, they retreated. The continuing high winds made us call it quits and we returned to Kathmandu on October 21.

Eric Simonson and John Cederholm

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