ANDALUCIA K2, Base
Camp, June 19, 2003
Important step in the
installation of the first Andalucian tent in C2.
Two small accidents in the
difficult trail between C1 and C2
Two small accidents have
taken place in the Andalucian expedition that tries to crown the summit of
K2. The expedition, sponsored by Consejería de Turismo y Deportes, has passed
an important phase of preparation in their adventure, which is narrated this
way by the chief of the expedition, 'Lolo' González, from Málaga:
"One of our groups worked
hard during the days of 15 and 16 to open the ascent route up to the bottom of
the House chimney, using Camp 1 as base. With two days of climbing for almost
12 hours, the route could be opened using again the ropes of last year's
expeditions and stocking technical material at the bottom of the chimney.
On the 17th the three
climbers were relieved by other three teammates that would finish the opening
job up to C2 and the installation of a tent in the tiny available landing.
The successful end of this works is an important step for us in the attempt we
are doing on K2. The C1 - C2 trail is possibly one of the more complicated in
the climb, although this mountain shows us everyday, along the way, that it
doesn't have easy parts and it is not willing to give us anything for free.
From BC we could happily
follow the installation of our tent in C2 (provisional altitude 6,625m); a
complicated job because a landing had to be carved in the ice on the steep
slope; the visual contact was our only liaison with our high altitude
teammates, problems with the batteries of the radio-telephones of the advanced
team leave us around 19:00 hours the following intermittent communication: we
are... in 30 minutes... camp 1. We all went to sleep with the euphoria of the
Two accidents in a key day
of our attempt to climb K2
At 6.00 h of the 18th,
Javier Sánchez and Amparo Ortega go towards C1 and connect the radio but there
is no communication, at BC everybody is still resting with the comforting
sleep of the minimum altitude possible.
It is 9.00 and all the
radio-telephones start to emit and receive frantic and impossible news: Juanjo
Garra tells of two accidents that suffered Fernando when a rope snapped in the
rappel of the House chimney, falling 5 meters at the end of the vertical
section and tumbling by the slope more than 50 until stopping in a point where
he would have gone from light contusions to we don't know what. He will be
recovering 7 days at BC.
His narration continues
with Salazar's accident. Impossible! Another rope snaps just before C1, with
worse consequences, he can't walk, an ankle has undetermined damage.
From radiant happiness we
go into Salazar's evacuation operation, with the relative calm to know that
the two teammates are OK. Amparo, Javier and our high altitude carrier
Gerard, join the three above to descend to advanced base camp, where Salazar
gets sliding on the snow. We, the rest of the expedition and Ibrahim (the
Sirdar), were expecting him in this point to get him down the glacier to BC,
and around BC we are joined by cooks, climbers, link officers and almost
everyone who is around BC to carry this kind of throne that was made for the
evacuation. Tired and reflexive we let the afternoon go by. K2 has not shown
exclusively its natural defenses, and has talked, and we have perfectly
understood the message. Four climbers will go up there again tomorrow to
continue with the work of installing the ropes between C1 and C2, and install
a second tent if possible. The mind of each one of us will work under other
concepts from now for sure, but we will continue with the idea to go always
Another Spanish expedition
has come to BC today, leaded by Carlos Soria, this fact give us new strength
because we will count with a real ally for the high altitude work. Until now
we have the mountain for us and it is magnificent, although we know that the
alliances to achieve this climbing are also very important. With Carlos Soria
we share previous experiences with some of the members of the group and we can
expect excellent collaboration.
We are very sorry that we
are not able to send the spectacular pictures of this climb, but the computer
problems and possibly our clumsiness still keep us from doing it.
A big hug for everybody,
from the Andalucians at K2". Manuel González
from Spanish by Jorge Rivera
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ANDALUCIA K2 expedition
Digital Altimeter, Barometer, Compass and Thermometer. Time/Date/Alarms.
Chronograph with 24 hour working range. Timer with stop, repeat and up
function. Rotating Bezel. Leveling bubble. Carabiner latch. E.L. 3 second
backlight. Water resistant. 4" x 2-1/4" x 3/4" 2 oz. Requires 1 CR2032
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