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   Nanga Parbat 2005: Everest Summiter IVAN VALLEJO RICAURTE HEADING TO CAMP 2


 

 

4,800 m Camp 1.  Three in the morning.

 

I suppose I slept so well that I didn't hear the alarm clock at two and a half.  Besides me there is Hassan, my Pakistani teammate (high altitude porter) with his large humanity of 1.85m still sleeping. With a pat on his shoulder I wake him up.

 

We have green tea and anise cupcakes for breakfast.  I put a big tent for three people in my backpack, which will be used to mount C2, the canteen full of Isostar, a bag with more anise cupcakes, three small packs of fresh cheese and ten candies.  In my jacket pockets I put my snacks, three cookies, six candies and a chocolate rice bar.

 

At four in the morning we leave the tent, outside the stars shine with the force of their union, to compete with the purple of the dawn.  The day starts and we start climbing.  The mountain slope receives Martin, a fireman from Zaragoza, Hassan and me.  At those hours the snow is just right to sink the spikes of the crampons.  Only when there is more light I can turn my frontal light off, and I realize the true dimension of the slope of snow: it is enormous, and we are very small in the middle of it!

 

Despite the weight of the backpack I go up happy, enjoying and having fun.  From time to time I ask Hassan how he is getting along and he answers Ok Sir.  I also talk to Martin, trying to convince him to climb the British route of Shishapangma, which I did last year, and I think is one of the prettiest things of the Himalayas.

 

At 8 in the morning, with Nacho and Jorge, we reach the Kinshofer wall.  Is a wall of polished rock, 100 m long, which has a dozen old and rotten ropes from top to bottom, left by other expeditions.  Nacho and Jorge go ahead fixing the rope, Martin and I go behind unreeling the rope.  When my turn to ascend over the second half of the wall comes, I have to get rid of the rope a couple of times and I have to climb with my nails and teeth, because the crampons don't do anything on the rock.  After the wall I reach a ridge of frozen snow that is almost on the air; from there, now that it is almost 10:30 in the morning, we go through bland snow that swallows us down to our waist.

 

Finally we reach the site where C2 is located and I can't believe it: a ridge so fine that a crow would hardly put its two claws there. Hassan and I take a break and we start building a platform for the tent, as the rest of the colleagues do.

 

A quarter to one: the sun shines hard, the platform is partially done so that my teammates finish it on the next trip.  I tie the tent to an aluminum stake and we start going down swimming through the snow; we reach the wall and once again, the endless slope.  Long and fastidious descent!  At 3 in the afternoon we are back again in C1, wet inside and outside.  I enter my tent, hydrate, take a little nap and at 6 in the afternoon we leave to Base.  During the descent a beautiful light illuminates all the immensity of Nanga Parbat, at my back, virtually lighting the mountain and in front of me, the Base Camp prairie: calm, quiet and sheltering.  We arrive at 7 in the evening, we are greeted, the girls with kisses, the boys with hugs, they congratulate us for the job we've done.  I go to my tent, change clothes, I wash my face and enter the mess tent, to enjoy a duck stew and chocolate and nuts cake.  I will take a shower tomorrow.

 

IVAN VALLEJO RICAURTE

Expeditioneer

 

Translated from Spanish by Jorge Rivera

 

Updates

 

Millet One Sport Everest Boot  has made some minor changes by adding more Kevlar. USES Expeditions / High altitude / Mountaineering in extremely cold conditions / Isothermal to -75°F Gore-Tex® Top dry / Evazote Reinforcements with aramid threads. Avg. Weight: 5 lbs 13 oz Sizes: 5 - 14 DESCRIPTION Boot with semi-rigid shell and built-in Gore-Tex® gaiter reinforced by aramid threads, and removable inner slipper Automatic crampon attachment Non-compressive fastening Double zip, so easier to put on Microcellular midsole to increase insulation Removable inner slipper in aluminized alveolate Fiberglass and carbon footbed Cordura + Evazote upper Elasticated collar.

Expedition footwear for mountaineering in conditions of extreme cold.  NOTE US SIZES LISTED. See more here.







 

 

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