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  Alan Hinkes overcomes Maoists blockades to continue with record summit attempt


Alan Hinkes meets with British High Ambassador

Update 4/26/2005: Alan has already climbed 13 of the 14 8000m peaks, if successful on Kangchenjunga in the coming weeks he will be come the first Briton to have stood on all of the world's highest peaks and only the twelfth globally.

(That's less than the number of people who have stood on the moon.) We will have little contact with Alan in the coming weeks while he is on the mountain. However we will endeavour to send news as and when we receive it.

 

 

HINKES OVERCOMES DIFFICULTY TO ARRIVE AT BASE CAMP IN TIME FOR HIS BIRTHDAY

 

Alan  Hinkes has safely completed the arduous trek in to Kangchenjunga base camp  at  around  7000m,  arriving  the day before his 51 birthday.  He now begins  the  acclimatization  process  which  should see him attempting the summit in the next few weeks. 

 

Alan's  Trek  into  base  camp was made much harder due to the Maoist rebel activity  currently  going  on in Nepal.  The Maoists have closed the roads out  of  Kathmandu which forced Alan to take a helicopter to the road head, where  he  could  begin  his  trek.   Earlier in the week a convoy taking a Russian expedition out of Kathmandu was attacked by rebels and one climber was  seriously  injured,  forcing  him  to  be  helicoptered  to a military hospital back in Kathmandu.

 

From  base camp, via his satellite phone, Hinkes said, "It's snowing pretty hard but it's not too cold (about minus 10 Celsius).    I'm feeling as well as  can  be expected in these early stages of acclimatisation and hopefully I'll  start  getting  out  and about in the next few days.  I'm also pretty chuffed  to  have  made  it  up  here  in time for my birthday and cook has promised to knock me up a cake later.” 

 

Kangchenjunga  is  the final peak in the Challenge 8000, Hinkes’ attempt to become the first Briton to summit the world’s 14 highest mountain, all more than  8000 metres.  He hopes to be able to summit some time in mid May and is expected back into the UK by early June.

Previous Update is below

 

Update 4/11/2005: British mountaineer Alan Hinkes in final preparation for record summit bid

updates regards British Mountaineer Alan Hinkes' attempt to become the first Briton to climb all of the world's 8000m peaks. Kangchenjunga is Alan's final mountain and if successful he will enter the UK history books and become only the twelfth person to have stood on all of the world's highest peaks.

Alan Hinkes meets with British High Ambassador

Well it doesn't seem two minutes since I arrived in Kathmandu and everything is starting to move quite quickly. I have secured my climbing permits and my supplies and equipment are arriving and being gathered together by my porters ready for my trip in to base camp. I'm in good spirits and being made to feel really welcome by everyone, even Keith Bloomfield the British Ambassador to Nepal has stopped by for a chat.

I hope to start making my way to base camp shortly and will keep you updated as to our progress, once again thank you to everyone for your support.

Update 1/4/2005

Alan Hinkes arrives in Nepal

Just letting everyone know that I have arrived safely in Nepal. Kathmandu is a strange mixture of Buddhism and Bureaucracy, so if you want anything done you either pray or pay. I'm busy sorting out my permits and putting together the finishing touches to the expedition. The weather is OK in Kathmandu but obviously it'll be a different story up at base camp. I'm feeling pretty strong and am looking forward to the trek into Kangchenjunga base camp. Hopefully, I'll be able to set off in the next couple of weeks.

Background

Alan Hinkes has announced his final Challenge 8000 expedition. Alan will be flying out to the Himalaya at the end of March to climb Kangchenjunga and if successful will enter the history books as the first Briton and only one of 12 people to have stood at the top of all of the world’s 8000m peaks.

As part of Challenge 8000, Alan has reached the top of 13 of the world’s most famous and dangerous mountains, including Everest, K2 and Nanga Parbat and in 2002 he became the first Britain to climb Annapurna in 32 years and in record time via a new route. All of these mountains are in the “Death Zone”, an unforgiving environment where the human body rapidly deteriorates and no one can survive for more than a few days.

Kangchenjunga (8586m) is the third highest peak in the world. Alan had to previously abandon an attempt on the mountain in May 2000 following bad weather conditions; while on his descent a snow bridge collapsed across a crevasse and he fell into it, breaking his arm. Having encountered the giant before Alan knows, like its fellow 8000ers it is a very dangerous mountain and one for which he has to prepare meticulously.

Alan comments: "Kangchenjunga lies at the eastern extreme of the Himalaya and is exposed to exceptionally bad weather conditions as the monsoon period moves in. This isn’t my first visit to Kangchenjunga and I know what lies in store, the terrain is very difficult and once on the mountain there is a very serious danger of avalanche and rockfall. I am however not worried, it feels like I am returning to an old friend and I am really looking forward to it. As I have always said I climb to live, not to die - the summit is always optional but returning is mandatory.”

Alan Hinkes has been working with Berghaus since the early 1980s and will be using many of the company’s most technical products whilst on expedition.

From 2004: Alan Hinkes Summits Dhaulagiri! and Alan Hinkes Summits Dhaulagiri more details and Mountaineer Alan Hinkes returns to Kathmandu following successful summit of Dhaulagiri

Alan Hinkes Annapurna 2002

Kangchenjunga 2003 Alan Hinkes

Alan Hinkes Spring Makalu 99

Alan Hinkes Q&A

Kangchenjunga 2000 Alan Hinkes

 

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