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Asia, India, Chandra Bhaga Range, Khhang Shiling (6,360m), First Ascent

Khhang Shiling (6,360m), first ascent. A three-member team sponsored by The Himalayan Club made the first ascent of Khhang Shiling peak (6,360m–20,866') on 19th September assisted by Sherpa Lakhpa Bhote. (“Khhang Shiling” means “Snow Mountain of four ridges”). The team consisted of Vineeta Muni, Shripad Sapkal, and me. We explored the Khamengar Valley in Spiti, a rarely visited area in Himachal Pradesh. The peak Khhang Shiling is a prominent mountain at the head of the Khamengar Valley.

We approached from Mikkim near Kaja to reach base camp (4,320m) in three days. ABC was at 5,160m. We established Camp 1 at 5,880m in a basin formed between a large rock feature and the Shigri Parvat massif. We climbed along the glacier until a bergschrund below the col between Shigri Parvat and Khhang Shiling. It was decided not to attempt Shigri Parvat since the entire route to the peak was over steep but loose rocks with a constant barrage of rockfall down the face. The route on Khhang Shiling looked promising, so we dumped rope and some hardware at the col and returned to Cl.

Next day Vineeta, Shripad, Sherpa Lakhpa, and I left for the summit by 7 a.m. Although the route was not very steep, we had to fix three rope-lengths due to the hard ice below the thin layer of snow. A strong wind increased the wind chill and all of us were very cold. We ran short of rope to fix the last two rope-lengths and carefully belayed each other to the top.

We started our return journey on 23rd September. Since we did not attempt Shigri Parvat, we had a few days to spare and decided to trek across the Pin Parvati pass into Kullu, which brought us to the traditional route to Manali.

Divyesh Muni, The Himalayan Club, India