Makalu, Ascent and Tragedy. Miss Taeko Nagao, Yuji Futamata, Yuko Okada, Takumi Ishizaka, Ayumi Nozawai and I were on Makalu’s normal northwest route. We placed Camp III on the Makalu Col at 7400 meters on September 26 and Camp IV at 7800 meters on the 29th. On October 5, Futamata, Okada, Ang Dorje Sherpa and I climbed to the summit. On October 7, Miss Nagao, Ishizaka, Nozawai and Furgerjen Sherpa headed towards the summit, but at 8100 meters Nozawai was forced to quit; he and the Sherpa descended. Miss Nagao and Ishizaka continued and reached the summit around four P.M. They descended to bivouac at 8200 meters. The next day, exhausted Ishizaka could not descend below 8000 meters. There, Miss Nagao dug a snow cave. She urged Ishizaka to enter; he responded but did not come in. She found him dead on the fixed rope in the morning. Though badly frostbitten, on October 9 she descended to 7600 meters where she was met by Futamata and me; she continued with us to Base Camp, which we reached on the 10th. She was helicoptered to Kathmandu for medical treatment.
Hirotaka Imamura, Bernina Alpine Club, Japan