Rotations on K2

Until now I have completed my necessary acclimatizing and rotations on K2’s Abruzzi Ridge and I hear teams are starting to look at suitable summit dates according to their forecasts. I have spent a night at Camp 3 (7450m) at highest which should give me adequate acclimatizing for attempt on the peak’s 8611-meter summit.

I of course had slight doubts about switching over from Broad Peak. K2 is notorious for being one of the World’s most dangerous mountains if not the most so. Avalanches, rockfalls and sudden storms have taken toll on climbers attempting the peak over it’s history. When compare the number of casualties related to number of summits this certainly is one of the most dangerous places on this planet. I did not feel comfortable on the mountain as I arrived at it’s base on July 5th.


On my two rotations up to highcamps I started to get a feel of the mountain. Apparently the conditions are fairly good this year and my take on the mountain has altered. All the time I have the awareness brought by knowledge over the numerous accidents they’ve had here but still, I have in fact felt safe and comfortable. There’s been no avalanches on or close to route. I have not seen many rockfalls and also I have been able to quickly retreat from the mountain if the weather’s started to turn worse. In a way I have greatly enjoyed climbing the ”mountain of mountains”.

The abruzzi Ridge differs greatly from all the other 8000’ers normal routes. It is steep, mixed, rocky, complex and offers fine and enjoyable climbing in places. The crux pitches of House’s Chimney and the Black Pyramid are World’s mountaineering classics. Highcamps are stunning giving splendid views over Concordia and Godwin-Austin glaciers.
Close to Camp 3 (7450m.) you move to a different terrain as the ridge slightly flattens and widens out to form the Shoulder. Here you have views North to China as well as to many more peaks including the Gasherbrums.


I have one more rotation to go to reach for the top. After a long period of heavy snowfall weather today started to get much better. I hear teams are starting to look at summit dates after 25th or 26th. This means I would tag along and hopefully start my summit attempt very soon.
I did not set up Camp 1 (6200m.) but will climb direct from Basecamp (5200m.) to my Camp 2 which I set up at 6700m below House’s Chimney. Next stage is to Camp 3 at 7450m from where it is a short, but strenuous climb to Shoulder at 7950m. Climb to Camp 4 is what I expect to be the hardest as I will be carrying a complete camping set-up as well as all the summit-gear and do that at extreme altitude with very little oxygen in the air.
From Camp 4 the summit-push is started late in the evening. First sections goes over a vast snowfield to base of so called ”bottleneck-couloir”. This can be considered as the single most dangerous part of the whole climb as you are climbing up a narrow funnel with a massive hanging glacier looming above. One can only hope the glacier sticks there solid long enough for you to climb the couloir and finally get aside at the ”bottleneck traverse”. After ”bottleneck traverse” you climb the steep snow slopes up towards the summit and hopefully, reach it in the morning.

During my summit attempt I will be sending daily tweets at ! Please follow my climb on World’s 2nd tallest mountain – ”Mountain on mountains”!