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Asia, Pakistan, Masherbrum II

Masherbrum II. Masherbrum II (c. 7200 meters, 23,622 feet) had previously been climbed only once, by Italians in 1988 on the southeast ridge. After approaching from Hushe, we established Base Camp on August 31 at the junction of the Bolux and Masherbrum Glaciers. We headed up the glacier until it bifurcated at a grassy knoll. We climbed the knoll and a rock valley and returned to the glacier where it dog-legged east into a wide couloir. On the top of the couloir in a rocky col, we placed Camp I at 5200 meters. We traversed east for 200 meters to an icy couloir where we were threatened by rockfall. The couloir widened into an icefield, which we climbed to the rim of a basin at 6000 meters. A 400-meter traverse due south brought us to a heavily corniced ridge which led to the foot of the summit pyramid, where we placed Camp II at 6400 meters. A shallow rib took us past two séracs on our right. We then climbed directly to the summit, arriving on the east ridge, 50 meters from the top. A huge, overhanging mushroom surrounded the summit. This we surmounted with the use of aid. On September 11, Victor Radvills, Ewen Todd, Rob Spencer, Dave Little, Andy Mayers, Norman Croucher and I reached the summit, followed the next day by Argentine Miguel Helf, Graham Lipp and Ian Swar-brick. On the 12th, Dr. Christine Patterson took a 200-foot fall in the couloir above Camp I and suffered severe bruising. Nonetheless, on the 13th she accompanied Duncan Talbot, Mark Neave and Terressa Booth to the summit.

Mark Miller, Out There Trekking, England