Dear Everestnews.com readers: The new forecast announcing
strong winds up high made us change plans for the summit push. We are
set to wait the passing of the jetstream, precipitation is announced at
7500m with perhaps as much as 20 Cm of new snow, however we hope the
wind will just send it to China. Our group is in great shape and
spirits, everyone is eager to get up the mountain again and wrap this
up. On a speculation note, all members believe this year will be
another repetition of 2004 with massive summits
In the mean time, we play cards and make jokes, it is a
pleasant atmosphere here at USA-EU Sunny K2 Expedition. Please keep
reading Everestnews.com, the only source of real climbing news. no
gossip, just news as reported to this site
From the Goodwin Austen Glacier
Sunny K2 Expedition
2010: Death on K2, a Mystery
This morning I frantically tried to find someone in C2 to
check on a Bulgarian man who arrived behind me in C2. His face showed that
of a totally disoriented and physically finished man. He looked like a
I got to know this man since he followed me from ABC, We
spoke several times and he asked me repeatedly where C1 was, and where C2
was. As I pointed out to him he kept asking the same question, again and
again. He seemed unable to comprehend even though his English was not too
bad. But more about him later.
The evening of Friday July 16 we heard strange noises
coming from his small Ferino tent. Initially we saw two men, one the
Bulgarian and another, well equipped, whom I thought was another
Bulgarian. It turned out to be a high altitude f****** Pakistani, and the
reason I say "f******" is because he left the Bulgarian in C2 and went
down to BC.
This morning I begged the Korean leader to radio his men,
who incidentally had just arrived in C2 from C3. After a bloody lengthy
communication nightmare, the news came over the radio.
The Korean leader, sitting at the table, looked at me and
motioned with his forefinger 'slicing' across his neck, I
didn't understood his signal but Isak, the cook, interrupted him, saying:
FINISH, he is dead. I went outside the tent and cried. This
would give K2 is another bad wrap, but the weather was fine; K2 was not at
I got back on the radio and told Rinjing and Mingma, our
two sherpa whom I placed on stand by in C1, just in case the
Bulgarian needed help.
"Go down, Rinjing, he is confirmed dead."
Initially Rinjing radioed down that he shouted at the
Bulgarian tent this morning but didn't receive a reply. Rinjing said,
Ivo Meier, our member who came down from C2 this morning,
confirmed that the backpack as well as the crampons and ice axe were still
next to his tent where I observed it the day before, when I already had
bad feelings about this man as I looked at his face.
. Ivo and I were chopping a platform for his C2 tent just
as this man arrived. He stared at me, looking like he wanted help. He
then entered his tent, where later noises were coming from, noises like
moaning or groaning. Frankly I had no idea what it meant.
In the morning when I decided to get down from C2, I had an
urgent call of nature, so I slid down past his tent where I knew the
toilet was. I kept my ice axe close since I was not wearing the crampons
and ascended to my tent, I thought I'd gather my things and before going
down just knock at the Bulgarian man's tent. Sadly, however, after packing
my things I hung onto the ropes and continued to slide down towards the
House Chimney. I forgot about my initial intent to visit Ferino's
tent. Not stopping there is my utmost regret, as I'll never know if at
that point the Bulgarian was still alive. I was alone in C2 at that time,
and there was one Poisk oxygen bottle and one mask with regulator.
To the fallen man's family: I apologize deeply. I will
regret my action til the day I die.
This is sad news of an unnecessary death, of a guy little
known by anybody here.
It reminded me of 2004 Everest when the niece of Hristo
Prodanov went up Mt. Everest in search of her uncle who perished on the
West Ridge, she wanted to descend the West Ridge in search of a body that
had been there for more than 20 years. Sane or insane, she died looking
for his body.
Here, now present in K2 BC, there is another person who is
inclined to go on that same path, so stay tuned. K2 is not done yet.
Forecast: next Sunday is the "D" day. Our group is solid,
strong, determined and ready for a safe ascent.
I hope the sad news reaches the Bulgarian man's family
I am the first to know about this tragic death; however,
laptops are plenty here.
From the Goodwin Austen Glacier, K2 BC reporting
exclusively for Everestnews.com
Sunny K2 USA-EU Expedition