ISLAMABAD: The Alpine Club of Pakistan (ACP) said seven American and Finnish climbers also reached the summit of K2 on Sunday to mark the 60 years since the mountain was first scaled in 1954.
“I am on summit of K2. The very highest point 8,611 metres. Beautiful day although may be the hardest I've done. No bottled oxygen, no support,” tweeted Finnish climber Samuli Mansikka after capturing the summit of the Savage Mountain at 8:25am on Sunday.
Samuli Mansikka waited in camp IV at 7,950 metres before his final attempt. The ACP said American climbers Alan Arnette, Matthew Dupuy and Garrett Madison along with three Sherpas from Nepal - Kami Rita Sherpa, Fur Kancha Sherpa and Kami Tshering - also reached the top of K2 at around 8am.
American mountaineer Alan Arnette also tweeted: “K2 summit unbelievably hard.”
The king in the north
These seven successful summit attempts are in addition to more than 20 mountaineers, including six Pakistanis, who reached the top of the second highest peak in the world on Saturday.
According to ACP member executive council Karrar Haidri, mountaineers made history on Saturday when as many as 21 climbers reached the top of the second highest mountain in the world in a single day.
According to the ACP, British adventurer Adrian Hayes also confirmed that he had reached the summit at 3:20pm on Sunday.
“Most excited moment of the journey, the successful summit at 3:35pm,” wrote the Nepalese female expedition team.
And Czech climber Radek Jaros, who also reached the summit at 4:04pm on Saturday, completed the conquest of all fourteen 8,000 metres-plus peaks. He was the first Czech climber to have climbed all these 8,000 metres high peaks, according to the ACP.
Mr Haidri said there were more climbers, including Chinese, Spanish, Americans, Canadian and Greek, still attempting to climb K2.
“This year is special because most climbers are celebrating the 60 years since K2 was first conquered by Italian mountaineers in July, 1954,” he said.
According to the official, Australian/New Zealand dual national Christine Jensen Burke had also climbed K2 and was one of the 20 plus mountaineers to reach the top on Saturday.
According to the ACP, Chris Burke, who had climbed all seven of the highest mountains in the seven continents, was among the few women attempting to climb K2.
She has come to Pakistan to attempt both 8,057 metres high Broad Peak and K2 one after the other. However, Chris Burke earlier had to abandoned her summit attempt on Broad Peak because of bad weather and was well acclimatised to move on to her next target – the K2 - before weather could deteriorate there too.
According to the ACP, 28 mountaineers from around the world have climbed K2 in two days.
Published in Dawn, July 28th, 2014