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Asia, Tibet, Shisha Pangma in the Pre-Monsoon, Mostly to the Lower Central Summit

Shisha Pangma in the Pre-Monsoon, Mostly to the Lower Central Summit. Only one climber, German Jakob Kirschmer, reached the highest summit (8027 meters, 26,336 feet) of Shisha Pangma this spring. All others climbed to the slightly lower central summit (8008 meters, 26,274 feet) and then descended. However, it was reported that the Chinese liaison officers were issuing certificates that credited all summiters with having reached the main summit. All followed the normal, Chinese route. An international team, mostly women, led by Gertrud Reinisch was composed of 10 Austrian, 3 Tibetan, 1 American and 1 Polish women and 1 Swiss and 4 Italian men. On April 29, a television crew of four men, Floriano Castelnovo, Ignaz Gruber, Mariano Fulvio and Salvatore Panzeri, two Tibetan women, Mrs. Gui Sang and Mrs. Laiki, and three Sherpa men, Chewang Dorje (son of Ang Rita), Mingma and Phurbu, climbed to the central summit, followed on May 2 by Austrian Frau Edith Bolda, Pole Mrs. Ewa Panejko-Pankiewicz, Tibetan Miss Pubu Dschoka and Sherpa Pasang. It is believed that this is the first time Tibetan women have climbed to any 8000-meter summit without artificial oxygen. Götz Wiegand led 13 Germans, who placed leader Wiegand, Frank Gräfe and Uwe Fretter on the central summit on April 29 and Heiko Züllchner the next day. An expedition of the Tibetan Mountaineering Association of 12 Tibetan men sent leader Song Zhu, Tshering Dorje and Dr. Luo Song Yun Deng to the central summit on May 7. From an expedition of 11 Canadians, 4 Australians and 1 American, Canadian Peter Jungen on May 7 and leader American Andrew Evans and Australian Paul O’Bryne on May 9 got to the central summit. An expedition of 8 Japanese placed leader Kazuyoshi Kondo, Hidetoshi Kurahashi, Takaharu Hayashi and Takehito Ikeda on the central summit on May 18 and Iwao Kuwabara, Yoshinori Kawahara and Pemba Sherpa on May 19. An international team of 8 British, 4 Australians, 3 Americans and 1 New Zealander climbed to the central summit: American William Pierson, Briton Alexander McNab and Ang Babu Sherpa on May 19; leader Briton Jonathan Tinker, Australian Mrs. Brigitte Muir and Jangbu Sherpa on May 20; New Zealander Stephen Hart, Britons Michael Smith and Paul Roberts and Australians Paul Carr and Gregory Linsdell on May 22; and by Britons Andrew Cave and David Craven and Ang Babu Sherpa (again) on May 24. A German Alpine Club (DAV) expedition was composed of 15 Austrians, Germans and Swiss. Germans Reinhard Müller, Dieter Stein Harald Rössner went to the central summit on May 27. On May 28, Germans Ralf Marsula, Reinhard Büscher and Alexander Härtlein reached the same summit while German Jakob Kirschmer continued on to the main summit and returned to the central summit to join the last of his teammates arriving on the lower peak. The central summit was reached again on May 29 by Swiss deputy leader Rolf Haas with Germans Florian Ibel and Karl Veile and on June 1 by German Erwin Diesler and leader Austrian Ernst Schwarzenlander.

Elizabeth Hawley