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Asia, Pakistan, Central Karakoram, Nameless Tower, Yugoslav Route

Nameless Tower, Yugoslav Route. The Scandinavian Trango Expedition (Jan Stenstrom, leader; Magnus Nilsson, Jon Haukassveen, Torbjom Ohlén, Fredrik Schlyter, Bo Strand, videofilm, and Anders Schmidt, doctor) climbed the 1987 Yugoslav route on the south face of the Nameless Tower. Stenstrom and Ohlén made a recon trip in the summer of 1996, scrambling up to 5200 meters where the actual climbing starts. This year’s expedition arrived in Islamadad on June 7. The administration process went smoothly and the team continued to Skardu on June 11. Sixty-five porters and five jeeps were hired. The road to Askole was in good condition. The cable crossing at the Jolla bridge, however, was swept away. The expedition crossed the Domondo river five kilometers upstream on another cable. Base camp was placed on Trango Glacier at a small lake.

Four strong porters stayed in base camp and carried loads up to Advanced Base Camp I (behind the big boulder on the left side of the gully; we found room for three tents) at 4900 meters. The porters took some of the loads further to Advanced Base Camp II (a small ledge on the right side of the gully, with room for one tent) at 5100 meters. After three climbing days, we established CI at the shoulder (5600m) on July 4. Supplies for two weeks were hauled to CI (we fixed ropes to the ground). The team stayed in advanced base camp during a five-day storm that delivered 50 centimeters of snow. Three climbing days took the team to CII (a big snowpatch) at 5900 meters. A storm forced a retreat from CII on July 10. Ropes were left fixed to CII.

The team split into two groups. Two climbers, Ohlén and Schlyter, stayed in CI, while Stenstrom, Nilsson and Haukassveen went down to base camp for a rest. The storm ended on July 11, and nice weather appeared again. Ohlén and Schlyter jumared rapidly to CII and reached CIII (a big snowpatch) at 6100 meters late in the evening. On July 12, they continued and climbed icy rock to the summit, which they reached at 3 p.m. Back in base camp, the doctor examined them, finding symptoms of pulmonary edema in one.

On July 13, at 4 a.m., Stenstrom and Nilsson started from base camp for a second summit bid. They reached CI in the afternoon the same day. They stayed for a few hours’ rest. At 3 a.m. on July 14, they jumared, reaching CIII at 8 a.m. They reclimbed the four final pitches and reached the summit at 3 p.m.

After cleaning the mountain, all climbers returned safely to base camp on July 17. The expedition returned to Denmark on July 26.

Jan Stenstrom, Denmark