American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, USSR, Ak-Su, Pamir-Alay, Turkestan Range

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

Ak-Su, Pamir-Alay, Turkestan Range. The members of our expedition were Christopher Watts, Caradse Jones, Jeremy Gore, Nicola Dugan, Siobhan Sheridan and I. Watts and I made a new line on the north face of Ak-Su (5355 meters, 17,569 feet) on June 29 and 30. The northwest buttress lies on the left side of a deep avalanche-prone gully which forms the west side of the north face of Ak-Su. The lower part of the buttress is dominated by a huge pinnacle which we bypassed on the right. From a bivouac on the col between the pinnacle and the main wall, the route continued on smooth granite walls to gain the northwest ridge, which we followed to the summit of Rocky Ak-Su (5217 meters, 17,116 feet). The main summit was then gained via the connecting ridge. Jones and Gore attempted a direct line up the center of the north face of Ak-Su but retreated after Gore was hit by stonefall. They also attempted the south ridge but retreated in bad weather. Dugan and Sheridan explored the area by mountain bike. Although the terrain was really too rough for biking, three valleys were visited and several unclimbed mountains seen.

Michael Fowler, Alpine Climbing Group

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