American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, India, Lahul, CB 44, a previously Unnamed Peak in Central Lahul, Probable First Ascent

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 2004

CB 44, a previously unnamed peak in Central Lahul, probable first ascent. Our organization, Kolkata Trekkers Youth (formerly Calcutta Trekkers Youth) of West Bengal, organizes expeditions in unexplored regions, or to virgin or relatively unknown peaks, or peaks that require technical climbing. For our 18th mountaineering expedition we decided to climb Akela Qilla (CB 46, 6,005m), Tombu (CB 48, 5791m), and Jori (CB 49A, 5,791m) in the Kulti Valley of Himachal Pradesh. The first successful expedition in this region of the Chandra Bhaga peaks was organized in 1955 by the R.A.F under the leadership of Tony Smythe. This team climbed CB 46 (now at least four ascents to date) and CB 48 (now at least two ascents to date). However, CB 49A does not appear to have any recorded ascent. Nearby there are many beautiful peaks. From the north these are: Taragiri, Tila ka Lahar, Ashagiri.

On August 29 we established Camp I above a hanging icefall, which we had bypassed via ca 250m of steep rock on the left side of the moraine. On September 2 Sonamji served bed tea at 3:35 a.m. and we left for the summit two hours later. We traversed onto the northeast side. Ashagiri (6,161m, climbed by the 1955 expedition) was the nearest objective, then unnamed peak (CB 44, 5,938m), and Akela Qila (6,005m). At 10:30 a.m. we put on crampons and climbed a steep face of around 75° for ca 250m. After tough climbing we reached a rock ridge at 11 a.m. and considering the prevailing weather and the time, we decided to climb CB 44. Perhaps the weather would not allow us to climb Akela Qila, Tambo, or Jori. Rajib was out of breath and I decided to wait here with him. But Sonam, Sandip, and Tikkim went on to climb CB 44, reaching the summit at 11:35 a.m. (32°27’N, 77°24’E). There appears to be no previously recorded ascent of this peak and we have no other information regarding whether this summit has been reached before.

Ashim Kumar Ghosh Chowdhury, Kolkata Trekkers Youth

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