Update 1/1/2006: Liu Feng, a liaison worker with the Sichuan
Mountaineering Association states that two Chinese military helicopters
aborted the search for Christine Boskoff Sunday due to bad weather. According
to Liu, the helicopters were dispatched Sunday morning for a search for
Christine but had to return to bad weather.
Xinhua reports that the search is on going at the request of
the U.S. Embassy. Liu said the military heicopter seach plannes to
resume the search as soon as possible. "The two helicopters are standing by
and will take off whenever weather permits," he said.
The ground search did not find any sign of Christine but
found the body of Charlie Fowler on Genyen Mountain. Liu guessed that "The two
climbers must have used ropes during the ascent, or might have been resting in
the same tent when an avalanche occurred,"
Update 12/31/2006: News from the FBSC: On December 29,
2006, the Field Commander determined that the area where Fowler's body was
found has become too hazardous for the established teams to continue the
search for Boskoff. The FBSC concurred, halting the search. The search will
resume when conditions stabilize, most likely in the spring.
On December 29, 2006, the Field Coordinator in Chengdu
reported that a "puja" ceremony has been arranged for Fowler and Boskoff at
the Lengu Monastery.
Update 12/28/2006: On December 28, 2006, the body found on
December 27, 2006 was confirmed to be that of Charlie Fowler. It appears
probable that the cause of death was an avalanche. Fowler was not wearing a
harness nor was he roped. He was wearing crampons and a large pack. At this
point, there is no evidence of Boskoff but the search continues...
Update: On December 26, 2006, the Field Coordinator in
Chengdu reported that the Field Search Teams visited the Genyen Monastery and
confirmed that Fowler and Boskoff stopped in on November 12, 2006. The Genyen
monks are certain of the date because of a festival that occurred that day.
They also confirmed that Fowler and Boskoff camped a few minutes from the
monastery that night. They told the monks that they planned to travel north of
the monastery and probably return for a visit in 4 days. The monks said they
had not seen any people go north of the monastery since Fowler and Boskoff’s
visit. They also reported that it had snowed 3-5cm during the festival, and
continued to snow thru November 14, 2006 for a total of 23cm. The search is
now concentrated on the two mountains to the north of Genyen monastery. One is
Genyen Peak, the other is a 5807m peak.
• On December 27, 2006, a body, mostly buried in the snow,
was spotted at 1:30pm (China time) by a Chinese member of one of the Field
Search Teams. The location is at an approximate altitude of 5300m (17,388
feet), 3 hours above Lenggu Monastery in the Genyen Region. The body is
currently unidentified and is not confirmed to be either Fowler or Boskoff.
Details of the sighting include modern climbing equipment, blue gaitors, and
grey boots. Dave Hillon, Chief, Consular Section U.S. Consulate General,
Chengdu, China has notified both of the families. Hillon also reported that
cooperation by the Chinese authorities has helped immensely to maintain an
accelerated effort by all parties involved. The plan now is for additional
Field Search Teams to return to the same area to confirm the identity of the
body and to look for additional climbers and/or evidence.
Two Updates: The search for Christine Boskoff and Charlie
Fowler continues in China. However, according to Liu Feng, an official with
the Sichuan Mountaineering Association the focus is on Genie Mountain. A
driver dropped them off in the town of Lamaya, near the Tibet border, on Nov.
11. The told the driver they planned to climb Genie Mountain.
Their luggage was found, Chinese state media reported
Monday, in the home of the driver in
the village of Lamaya. He said they would return in 2 weeks but never did....
Hope? A China Daily Web site reported yesterday that a man
in Chendu, China, saw a man and woman on December 10th on a highway in south
central China. The couple were spotted in the same area that search teams have
been focusing on. But it seems very strange if this was Chris and Charlie that
they would have not contacted someone...by now.....
Earlier update: Fowler-Boskoff Search
Committee (FBSC) 12/20/06 • Telluride CO
Colorado-based climbers Charlie Fowler and Christine Boskoff are missing and
presumed to be either on or below a remote mountain near the town of Dequen in
Yunnan Province, China, or near the towns of Litang and Batang in Sichuan
TIMELINE & ACTIONS
• On December 11, 2006, Mark
Gunlogson, President of Mountain Madness (Boskoff’s company in Seattle WA),
confirmed that the pair was not on their scheduled flight back to the U.S. on
December 4, 2006.
• On December 12, 2006, the FBSC
was formed in Telluride as a linked and parallel search effort.
• In order to narrow the search
area by putting
together a short list of possible stops and destinations by the pair,
information was assembled from Fowler and Boskoff’s last email communications
with friends and family, and from
Fowler’s computer that was left behind with his business partner.
• On December 13, 2006, the FBSC
proposed to Mountainfilm In Telluride that it could establish
an account under its
non-profit umbrella to accept tax deductible donations from anywhere in the
world for the search effort. Mountainfilm agreed.
• On December 14, the FBSC
established a funding goal of $75,000 in order to fully implement the
strategic phasing of a ground search, a possible search-and-rescue, and a
search from the air.
December 15, the FBSC enlisted two China-based field managers. This has
coordinated search groups to
set out to the two locations that the FBSC has deemed probable.
December 18, 2006, the Chief of the Consular Section U.S. Consulate General in
Chengdu, China, reported that the governments of Yunnan and Sichuan Province
and the Tibetan Autonomous Region are officially working on the Fowler-Boskoff
December 18, 2006, the field manager in Chengdu reported:
were sighted about a month ago in a village north of Batang, one of the
primary search areas (near Yangmalong Peak). A search team in the area was
directed to focus their efforts on tracking down more information on this
Four teams are
checking both entrance points to Unnamed Peak 6509
Checked out Batang County seat together with government officials including
County Chief. No records in hotels, one possible sighting a month ago in a
Confirmed sighting of Charlie and Christine in an Internet café around the
time of the November 8 email to friends in the U.S. Two unconfirmed sightings
of them between November 15 and 20. Driver stated that Christine inquired
about cars to Deqin. Also checking out rumors of a car accident on the Litang–Ganzi
road in Xinlong County (north of Litang).
Checking out Genyen monasteries with a high monk.
Zealanders were robbed at knifepoint in Genyen area in October. They did not
resist but their interpreter was injured. The attackers have not been found.
December 19, 2006,
a concerted effort to corral politically weighted support for the search in
hopes of elevating awareness at high levels within China was mounted from both
Telluride CO and Seattle WA:
Ken Salazar (D-Colo) sent a letter to the U.S. Ambassador in Beijing
expressing gratitude for the consular support—recent and future—regarding all
aspects the search.
Alpine Club contacted Representative Mark Udall (D-Colo) about the situation.
former Washington Governor Gary Locke informed the Chief of Staff to Premier
Wen JiaBao in person of the situation and the search efforts underway in the
Washington Governor Christine Gregoire sent a letter to the Governor of their
sister city in Sichuan Province requesting support for the search.
December 20, 2006,
the field manager in Chengdu reported:
Found by one of
the daily search teams in Litang in a visitors book at a restaurant:
9 November 06:
“Great food and people, enjoyed the food. The mountains around Yading are
awesome. Countryside reminds us of home. We’ll be back.” - Chris Boskoff and
Charlie Fowler, Norwood, Colorado, US
A reward has
been set up in the amount of 30,000 RMB (approx. $4,000 USD) for information
leading to the whereabouts of Fowler and Boskoff
were officially (and physically) handed to the Sichuan Mountaineering
Association (SMA) today with a Sichuan TV station crew filming
posters have been reprinted and redistributed with the reward info
The Field Team
in Dongba stated that, “the reward is attracting a lot of attention.”
December 20, 2006,
CCN International from Beijing arrived in Chengdu to cover the story. They
will “shadow” a field team heading for Kangding on December 21 and then travel
on to Litang and Batang. Highlighted will be the search itself, the reward,
the cooperation between the SMA and the search teams, and the towns
Earlier Update: Boskoff/Fowler Search and Rescue Fund: A new account has
been established to accept donations for the Boskoff-Fowler search effort.
The account is titled The Boskoff-Fowler Search and Rescue Fund. It is a
Fortune Bank account and the account number is 2000032. Mailing address is
Fortune Bank, 1201 Third Ave., Suite 700, Seattle, WA 98101. You can contact
Ronnie Henderson at Fortune Bank at 206-403-8023 if you questions.
All checks should be made to The Boskoff-Fowler Search and Rescue Fund. To
make a wire transfer, banking information is:
Routing/Transit Number: 121042484
Abbreviated Name: Pac Cst Bkers Bk SF
Credit to: Fortune Bank
Account Number: 125008877
For Further Credit To: #2000032 Boskoff/Fowler Search and Rescue Fund
* All donations are non-refundable. Donations to the Fund will be used
specifically to defray costs related to the search and rescue and effort. Any
surplus funds may be used for related purposes at the discretion of the
Mountain Madness Board of Directors.
Update: Searchers are out in the field looking....
Update 12/18/2006: Several readers have requested updates.
Very little news... Search parties hope to find them, but no news yet.
Donations are being accepted, if anyone wishes to donation please let us know
and we will put you in touch with the right people.
The last time we talked with Chris, she talked about how
much she wanted to go on this trip and just climb....
Background: Christine Feld
Boskoff in known as America’s leading female alpinist and CEO of Mountain
Madness, (an adventure travel and expedition operator.); in actuality she has
climbed the most summits of any woman alive, from any country (at the time she
stopped climbing 8000 meters peaks). Christine, a
Wisconsin native was born in 1967; in 1993 she took a two day climbing course.
Four years later she became the first woman from North America to reach the
summit of Lhotse. In 2000 she led a successful expedition to the summit of
The first mountain Christine
climbed was in the Bolivian Andes, 17,000ft Tariji. After this first success
she began organizing climbing expeditions to Africa, Mexico, Europe and North
America. In 1994 she made her first trip to Asia and climbed Ama Dablam. In
1997 Christine bought the name, Mountain Madness. Mountain Madness is a
company which was started by Scott Fisher; however Scott lost his life while
guiding clients to the summit of Everest in 1996. Christine has turned
Mountain Madness into one of America’s finest climbing schools and 8000m
Christine has been a member
of eight 8000m expeditions, six of which were successful in reaching the
summits. She has reached the top of Shishapangma, Everest, Gasherbrum II,
Lhotse, Cho Oyu, and Broad Peak. Other accomplishments include Jilliper North
and Ganaio in Pakistan; she has made winter ascents of Mt. Angor, Mt.
Kilimanjaro and Mt. Kenya in Africa, she has climbed Mt. Blanc and the
Matterhorn in Europe and climbed extensively throughout North and South
She is the only American
woman alive to have reached the summit of 6 8000 Meter peaks. She also has an
extensive record of unexplored first ascents, primarily in Tibet. Committed to
living her dreams, Christine will be guiding Cho Oyu and attempting to climb
K2 in 2002. She was the first North American woman to summit Lhotse.
She has taken part in 9 8000
meter expeditions, being successful on 6, including Everest, when she
summitted from the S. Col/SE Ridge, on May 24, 2000 (a Mountain Madness
expedition with Peter Habeler). Christine lives in Seattle, Washington.
Just the Facts: Christine
Boskoff: American born 9/7/67, with her 6 8000M summits
is now tied for second all time for women. Christine has summitted
Broad Peak (8/13/95), Cho Oyu (9/27/96), Lhotse (5/26/97), Gasherbrum II
(8/19/99), Everest (5/24/00), and [the main TRUE summit] Shishapangma on
10/10/00 by the British route on the Southwest face.
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