Ama Dablam, Possible Variation and Traverse. Ama Dablam (6812m) attracted 12 expeditions in the spring, 11 of which attempted the standard Southwest Ridge route. Of the only three that succeeded, one, from New Zealand, went up an exceptional way. The team climbed via the northeast spur to the north ridge, making a series of bivouacs along the ridge to the summit. They then descended the standard route. All five of the New Zealanders, including the leader, David Crofts, gained the top on May 4 on difficult rock and ice, sometimes mixed, all good quality, and Crofts described their ascent as “a pleasure.” They had made the first ascent of their mountain this season after most of the other Ama Dablam expeditions had already left the mountain.
David Crofts does not consider his team’s route a new one. Whether it is or not depends on how you define a new route. What is certain is that they used a very seldom-climbed route and made the third traverse of the mountain from north to south.