Chandra Parvat, Attempt. In 1938, the first Austrian Himalaya Expedition made many ascents in the western Garhwal Himalaya, including the first ascent of Chandra Parvat (6728m), which was climbed via the west ridge by Leo Spannraft and Dr. W. Frauenberger. Spannraft was one of Austria’s famous alpine pioneers and a decade-long member of the Mountain Rescue Association and the Alpenverein. He died at age 90 on a ski tour. In 1998, on the 60th anniversary of this first Austrian expedition, nine alpinists of Villach elected to attempt Chandra Parvat in memory of Leo Spannraft.
We started our expedition in Chitkul (3450m) in the Baspa Valley, crossed the 5282-meter Lampkhaga Pass to Harsil, and reached the Advanced Base Camp near the Suralya Glacier at 5100 meters on September 7. On the 8th, we established CI (5500m) near the southwest ridge and returned to ABC. On the 9th, the first team, along with the successful Indian climber Keendar Singh and the liaison officer Ganga Singh, started for CI. The next day, they established CII and continued climbing along the southwest ridge to 6600 meters where the west and the southwest ridges meet. They reached this point in six hours in bad weather but good snow conditions. The traverse to the 6728-meter main peak was impossible due to bad weather conditions (snow, fog, whiteout). The crew descended the same day to ABC. On September 12, in similarly poor conditions, the second team, including Mangal Singh, reached this west summit and descended in a snow storm to ABC.
Dr. Karl Pallasmann, Austrian Alpenverein