American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, India, Garhwal, Himachal Pradesh, South Parbati, Southwest Ridge, Attempt

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 2001

South Parbati, Southwest Ridge, Attempt. Martin Chester, Iain Peter, and I flew to Delhi on September 12, left Delhi on September 15, and arrived in Manihorai on the 17th, where we met our Nepalese porters and cook. The five-day trek up the Parbati Valley was incredible. Unfortunately, there is a dam project going on, which will mean that this stunning walk will be lost within the next ten years. Base Camp was on a large flat area; it is obviously used by trekking companies taking groups up the Pin Parbati Pass, as there was lots of poorly buried rubbish. We sorted the rubbish out and burned as much as we could.

We got our first glimpse of South Parbati (6128m) and our route, the southwest ridge, on September 28. The ridge is stunning with some excellent rock. We tried it alpine style, allowing four days, but, due to a combination of poor rock and snowfall that prevented us from climbing every day from midafternoon on, we decided to retreat. A rotten band was up high and the top section looked very hard. It would be very hard to transport gear for any form of big- wall attempt. The weather we encountered was light snow—enough to stop us from rock climbing, but not enough to put snow down for water resupply. We arrived back at Base Camp around October 6, three days before the porters arrived for the trek out.

Olly Sanders, United Kingdom

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