Two teams plan another attempt to summit K2

Published February 2, 2021
Two teams of mountaineers are planning to make another attempt to scale K2 by Feb 5 as the weather is usually sunny. — File photo provided by Imad Brohi
Two teams of mountaineers are planning to make another attempt to scale K2 by Feb 5 as the weather is usually sunny. — File photo provided by Imad Brohi

GILGIT: Two teams of mountaineers are planning to make another attempt to scale K2 by Feb 5 as the weather is usually sunny.

According to a tour organiser, Asghar Ali Porik, a three-member expedition team comprising Iceland’s John Snorri and Pakistani mountaineer Mohammad Ali Sadpara and his son Sajid Sadpara had to return to the base camp from the higher points three times in the recent past due to high speed winds. They will start another attempt to scale K2 on Feb 4 or 5, he added.

Mr Porik said the climbers were currently at the base camp waiting for good weather to start another summit push.

Separately, a 28-member international SST K2 winter expedition plans to start their trek on Tuesday (today) and reach the summit on Feb 5.

A team comprising eight Sherpas went up from the base camp on Monday to recheck all the equipment left at higher camps, repair the ropes and deposit oxygen bottles there, according to a press release.

Meanwhile, international award winning Canadian filmmaker Elia Saikaly along with crew members, including two local high altitude climbers, Fazal Ali and Jalal, is currently at the K2 base camp, shooting the heroic actions of the climbers to make a documentary on their incredible achievements, and also narrates the difficulties he is currently facing in shooting the movie.

Praising Mohammad Ali Sadpara, he said the noted Pakistani mountaineer was amongst the greatest mountaineers of ‘our times’ as he has a vast experience in climbing peaks and mountains of 8,000 meters and above, both in summer and winter. His accomplishment of first winter ascent of Nanga Parbat is legendary.

“I sat with Sadpara and listened to him as he told me incredible stories of combating minus 60 Celsius temperatures in winter while attempting and succeeding on 8,000 meters peaks over the years,” Elia Saikaly explained.

Elia Saikaly said the repeated stories of getting frostbite due to extremely harsh climate were especially impressive considering he (Sadpara) still had 10 fingers and 10 toes.

He (Mohammad Sadpara) recounted how one year after an especially difficult winter expedition he returned home with frostbite on his fingers and used a sheep stomach in combination with appropriately warmed water to heal his extremities.

Explaining the difficulties at K2, Elia Saikaly said it had been a pretty wild ride over the past 30 days. “I’ll be lying if I said I was not nervous because one mistake up there can cost you your life.”

Published in Dawn, February 2nd, 2021

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