Kaptang (5,965m), North Face; Kojichuwa Chuli (6,439m), Attempt
Asia, Nepal, Nalakankar, Kanti Himal
The prolific mountain explorer Tamotsu Ohni- shi and four companions visited the Kanti Himal in June. Their aim was the first ascent of three peaks: Kaptang, Kojichuwa Chuli, and Danphe Sail (6,103m)—peaks first opened in 2002 or 2003 and, apart from Kojichuwa Chuli, previously unattempted. They flew to Nepalgunj and then to Jumla, arriving on May 20. From here they trekked north to Rara Lake and then to the hamlet of Mugu, continuing up the Mugu Valley to establish base camp on June 2 at 4,300m. On the 8th they made an advanced camp at 5,492m, south of Kaptang, which lies on the frontier ridge southeast of the Namla La. On the 9th Gomba Sherpa, Toshitsugi Irizawa, and Ohnishi climbed to the summit. They left advanced camp at 6 a.m., reached the top at 2 p.m., and were back at their tents by 4 p.m. The three crossed to the Tibetan side and climbed the north face, fixing 400m of rope and overcoming a 70° section. Koji Mizutani, Hisashi Suzuki, and Kazuo Tauji repeated the climb the following day.
The expedition now retraced its steps down-valley to the south and moved east-northeast up the Kojichuwa Khola above Mugu. On the 16th they established base camp at 4,600m, and on the 21st Gomba, Irizawa, Suzuki, and Tauji climbed toward the ca 5,500m Kojichuwa La, on the frontier ridge northwest of Kojichuwa Chuli, with the goal of ascending its northwest ridge. Four hours above base they reached 5,565m, where they decided they were too tired to continue. They abandoned plans for climbing Danphe Sail, and returned toward Jumla. However, Tauji contracted a stomach illness, they requested a helicopter, and the team flew out on the 21st from Ringmo to Nepalgunj.