American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Nepal, Mahalangur Himal - Khumbu Section, Amphy Middle (6,238m), First Known Ascent

  • Climbs And Expeditions
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  • Publication Year: 2009

Amphu Middle (6,238m), first known ascent. On April 20 Alexander Graeber and Olaf Rieck made the first known ascent of Amphu Middle. The next day three other members of their team, Erik Jahn, Karen Mehlhase, and Christian Pech followed their footsteps to the summit. The name Amphu Middle was coined by Rieck. It is the highest and most northerly of three unnamed summits (on the Schneider Map) that lie between the Chhukhung and Amphu glaciers, northeast of Ama Dablam and immediately south of the Imje Glacier and Island Peak. To its east lies Peak 6,205m (Amphu East) and to the south Peak 6,146m (Amphu South). As with many lower peaks in the Khumbu, all three summits most likely have received unauthorized ascents.

The German team had a permit for Amphu I, an (officially) unclimbed 6,740m peak opened in 2002 and situated farther east, between the Amphu Lapcha (Amphu Labtse, a popular 5,780m trekkers’ pass) and 7,152m Baruntse. However, after establishing base camp at 4,990m below the Chhukhung Glacier, they reconnoitered the northwest ridge of Amphu Middle. This begins at 5,400m, but the main difficulties start with a steep ice section at 5,700m, where on April 15 the Germans placed their only high camp. Over the next five days Graeber and Rieck fixed 1,400m of rope, more or less from the start of the ridge at 5,400m to the summit. The upper section was a mixture of snow, ice, and rock, and no sign of any previous attempt was found. The second team brought down all the ropes.

Lindsay Griffin, Mountain INFO, and Richard Salisbury, The Himalayan Database.

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