Nya Kangri, South-Southwest Ridge from the North, Attempt
India, East Karakoram
Petros Tolias, Ioannis Soultoukis, and I (Greece) arrived in Leh on June 28, hoping to ascend unclimbed Nya Kangri (6,480m, 34°37’38.48”N, 77°45’23.08”E) via its northwestern slopes and south-southwest ridge. Tolias and I had previously attempted to reach this ridge from the north in 2016 (AAJ 2017).
After spending two days in Leh, we made an acclimatization ascent of a nearby peak to the north, Nanga Sago (5,806m), starting from the road to the Khardung La. Next day we drove to Sumur village in the Nubra Valley. Our approach led up the Sumar Valley to the northwest side of Nya Kangri, with our first camp by a lake at 5,015m at the start of the moraine. However, bad weather and altitude sickness for Soultoukis forced us down to Sumur.
On July 9, Tolias and I set off for a second attempt. We made our second camp at 5,810m on the upper glacier below the northwest side of the mountain. On the 11th we climbed an icy north face, with average angle 55°, to the crest of the south-southwest ridge at 6,118m. At this point a rock tower bars access to the final ridge. Passing this tower demands technical climbing, which, given the weather conditions and freezing temperatures, was not possible. We retreated to Camp 1 and returned to Sumur next day.
Although we were close, we believe an ascent from the north is very difficult and consider the south side (from the Tirit/Terith Valley) as the most feasible route. (See reports on previous attempts from this side in AAJs 2009 and 2017.)
— Nikolaos Kroupis, Hellenic Alpine Club of Komotini, Greece