AAC Publications - http://publications.americanalpineclub.org

Asia, Nepal, Various Winter Ascents

Nepal, Various Winter Ascents. In the winter of 1996-97, only four expeditions came to Nepal, one each on Ama Dablam, Annapurna I, Makalu and Pumori. One Korean expedition, led by Park Young-Seok, reported success on Ama Dablam by its standard Southwest Ridge route; another, led by Um Hong-Gil, reached 6850 meters on the Dutch North Rib of Annapurna I; and a Manuel Gonzalez-led Spanish expedition reached 7200 meters on Makalu’s northwest ridge. But the more interesting ascent of the season was accomplished by a six-man French team led by Christophe Profit on 7161-meter Pumori. First, Profit and a colleague scaled the mountain by its normal Southeast Face route. Then they went around to Pumori’s south pillar, which had not been climbed since its first ascent in 1972. Profit and three teammates followed this pillar much of the way but then moved over to the right up an ice gully. It was a difficult climb with several steps of vertical rock, but they accomplished their ascent without fixed camps, fixed ropes or Sherpas. (They went down by the normal route since they had fixed no rope for a descent by the pillar.) Altogether, it was “a very nice adventure,” Profit said with quiet satisfaction.

Elizabeth Hawley