American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing
Black Diamond Logo

Langshisha Ri, West-Northwest Face

Asia, Nepal

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Author: Vanja Furlan
  • Climb Year: 1994
  • Publication Year: 1995

I made a solo, alpine-style, first ascent of the west-northwest face of Langshisha Ri (6427 meters, 21,086 feet) and the first traverse of the peak. I was accompanied to Base Camp by Dr. Matjaž Vrtovec, Chindi Phurba Sherpa and liaison officer Kesar Bahadur Saud. After acclimatization climbs, which included an ascent to a plateau at 5700 meters below the standard south-face route to become familiar with the descent, I set out up the previously unattempted west-northwest face from 4700 meters late on the morning of October 7. I found two large, dangerous séracs overhanging the route and so I climbed a rock ridge between them, which was in direct sunlight and therefore warm, though a bit complicated with some difficult pitches. I stayed on it to its top at 5360 meters. I then ascended a snow ramp (50° to 60°) leading left to a sérac at 5820 meters, where I bivouacked at 8:30 P.M. without a sleeping bag to save weight and to allow me to take two ropes for rappels on the descent of the south face. After a cold night, I resumed the ascent at 6:30 A.M., now on the steepest part of the route, which was never less than 60°. The crux was fifteen meters of 80° ice below a delicate 65° traverse to the right and another ten meters of 80° ice. Following a 65° to 70° couloir, I joined the southwest ridge about 100 meters from the top, where I arrived at eleven A.M. on the 8th, four hours after I had completed the “delicate traverse” and had begun the straightforward ascent of the couloir, which was “beautiful climbing.” I descended the ridge for 100 meters to where I had left my rucksack and traversed 100 meters to the south face and the normal route. I climbed down the upper 200 meters and then rappelled the next 500 meters. Due to bad conditions on the south face, the descent took all afternoon and I reached the foot at 5:20 P.M. As it was getting dark and I was tired, I bivouacked there at 5700 meters and reached Base Camp the next day.

Vanja Furlan, Planinska zveza Slovenije

This AAJ article has been reformatted into HTML. Please contact us if you spot an error.