it was a bit windier, the wonderfully clear
afternoon was the reward for the long ascent through
the heat of the icefall. The Sherpas and Qudrathad
reached Camp III for the first time the same
afternoon along the technically most demanding part
of the route, using the fixed
ropes of the Norwegians that had already been
successful. It was going to be a long and
strenuous stage on May 9. Steep snow slopes mixed
with ice passages angled 70 degrees, until we
reached Camp III - some of us only late in the
and Harald were plagued by bad luck: Albert fell
into a crevasse twice during the ascent und Harald
lost his down jacket to a gust of wind, which forced
him to a long descent. Nevertheless, at 5.00pm everyone,
all 21 men/women had arrived at Camp III on 7450m. A
great success. Erecting the tents was not an easy
task with the early strong storm. Luckily, the
weather improved during the afternoon and it no
longer took six men necessary to pitch a tent.
10 began with a revived storm, after we had all
started to cook around 10.00pm. Shortly after
midnight everyone was ready to leave, except Paula,
who was complaining about extremely strong headaches
that couldn't even be alleviated with pain killers.
Since she also had a fast pulse and high
pressure behind her eyes we had to assume that she
had the onset of a cerebral edema.
was ready to leave, and therefore I gave Paula dexamethasome
for the edema and left with everyone else. A story
from Shishapangma, however, which told of a left
behind expedition members that died quickly only a
few years ago made Qudrat and me turn around soon.
In short time we reached the camp and saw that Paula
was in a much better state.
von Rotz summitted between 7.30am and 9.30am
together with seven expedition members, our sherpas
Danu and Tenzing, Gerlinde KAltenbrunner and Renzo
Corona as well as their Sherpa Lhakpa.
successful climbers of our expedition are in
alphabetical order: Alois Bogenschütz, Gianni
Goltz, Toni Grassl, Toni Kurz, Reinhard Müller,
Dieter Porsche, Sepp von Rotz, Sebastian Wurm.
as last year during our successful Nanga Parbat
expedition it had proved to be a great advantage
that we were two guides for a 8000m expedition and
thus able to react to extreme situations. Albeit the
return without having summitted was hard for me to
bear, but the knowledge of being close to Paula in
case of a worsening and the option of trying for the
summit the next day helped to deal with the
disappointment. During the morning Paula descended
together with our expedition doctor to Camp II and
was thus safe.
the bad luck continued and during the descent from
the summit of Manaslu Alois Bogenschuetz's crampons
broke a plate of ice and he fell a good 150m down
the summit face. Gladly, he suffered only a stretched
tendon, a slight head wound and several bruises.
Again, Sepp was the savior in distress and after my
decision to descent as soon as possible, Sepp and
Alois and Gerlinde began the strenuous descent to
Camp II, where Hannes gave medical attention to
Alois late at night.
had barely gone out of sight, when Renzo Corona came
down from the summit and complained of breathing
complications and extreme loss of power. A lung
edema was starting and thus the most important
decision for the next day was clear: priority was to
get Renzo down into the valley despite his lung
edema. It was too late for this afternoon, which
meant spending an ugly stormy night with Nifdepin.
Early at 5.30am on May 11 we began to break the
tents during the storm and unfortunately it took us
until 8.00am until Renzo and I could start the
small rise before the fixed ropes became a torture
and it took many hours until Renzo and I had passed
the many fixed ropes and rappelling stages to
finally arrive in Camp II. Even here we decided not
to stay - Renzo was to spend his last night on the
mountain as low as possible. At 7.00pm, together
with Sepp and Gerlinde, we reached step by step Camp
I. Phuri Sherpa had met us half way
and accompanied me to base camp where I collapsed
into my sleeping bag, completely exhausted, at
10.00pm. Sepp spend another night at Camp I with
Renzo and Gerlinde.
12 is a quick story: finally, Sepp arrived with
Gerlinde and Renzo at base camp and everyone was
back reasonably fit. Alois will take the helicopter
for the return, the rest will finish off the
expedition with the extreme trek "Around
Manaslu". In the evening we had a great summit
party and all the other expeditions were invited.
me, it has been the first time in years that I did
not reach the summit of an expedition goal. While
painful, the failure changes in light of the mostly
healthy return of the entire team with summit
success. To guide down a climber with lung edema
from 7400m to the valley is in hindsight the greater
performance and satisfies me in my job as a mountain
guide. I thank you for your interest during the last
weeks. Equally, I would like to thank my sponsors
SCHÖFFEL Sportbekleidung, GORE-TEX footwear, CICLO
Sportuhren und der Sparkasse Bühl, without whose
material and financial support I could not have
completed my enormous preparatory training.
I'd like to thank my colleagues Nicola Roth and
Andrea Mueller, and Klaus Friedmann.