Camp 2 (6100m), West Ridge of Broad Peak ©Mike Farris
Broad Peak: The Party's Over
After the summit push of July 21, virtually everybody on every team gave up.
Some of us, however, held out hope of a last break in the weather before the
porters' arrival on August 1. A period of unstable, but possibly adequate
weather was forecast for July 26-28, so a few of us decided to give it a shot.
It helped that Don and I both had gear in C2 that needed retrieval in any
summit bid died before it was born. Don and another climber fell prey to the
same illness (best called 'Field Touring Dysentary', after the kitchen of
origin), while the other climber pulled the plug at C1. I ended up at C2, the
last healthy climber still with desire for a summit push. Don gamely reached
C2 after vomiting numerous times, but his only choice was to take his gear
retrospect, nothing was lost. Fierce winds sprung from nowhere about the time
that Don and I would have reached the summit ridge, and even a day later
conditions along the ridge would have been too windy for the true summit.
Last year I
reached 7900m on the summit ridge before I turned around. I knew that I was
too dehydrated to reach the real summit, and I had no interest in the false
'rocky summit' that seems to captivate everyone else. So I turned around just
below, hoping for another summit attempt that never materialized. This year, 2
American climbers bivied at the same spot. The next morning, the winds were
too strong to reach the true summit, so they turned around without tagging the
other climbers were on their second or third attempt at Broad Peak, and none
of us reached the top. Oh well!
Dennis and Sergei on their descent from their new route on
A stellar achievement and the only two summiters of the
So now we
dry out gear, type dispatches, and wait for porters. K2 and Broad Peak are
sheathed in clouds above 7000m. Only about a half dozen climbers are left at
Broad Peak Base, everyone else having left during the two days I was on the
hill. Time to pack up all my dry gear before it decides to snow. But first, a
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
Expedition footwear for
mountaineering in conditions of extreme cold. NOTE US
SIZES LISTED. See more here.
weather, high altitude double boot for extreme conditions The Olympus
Mons is the perfect choice for 8000-meter peaks. This super lightweight
double boot has a PE thermal insulating inner boot that is coupled with
a thermo-reflective outer boot with an integrated gaiter. We used a
super insulating lightweight PE outsole to keep the weight down and the
TPU midsole is excellent for crampon compatibility and stability on
steep terrain. WEIGHT: 39.86 oz • 1130 g LAST: Olympus Mons
CONSTRUCTION: Inner: Slip lasted Outer: Board Lasted OUTER BOOT: Cordura®
upper lined with dual-density PE micro-cellular thermal insulating
closed cell foam and thermo-reflective aluminium facing/ Insulated
removable footbed/ Vibram® rubber rand
See more here.