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EverestNews.com Coverage of Belgian Himalayan expedition

Climbing for

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Collecting money for Médicins Sans Frontières by climbing a mountain over 8,000 metres high: this is what Koen Van Huffel, a 35-year-old commercial engineer from Mechelen (Belgium) intends to do. He will be setting off on 13 April with four other Belgians and a New Zealander on a climbing expedition to the Tibetan Himalayas. He aims to reach the summit of Shisha Pangma (8,046 m.), the mountain that plays a central role in Hergé’s world-famous “Tintin in Tibet”.

Who wants to buy a piece of the Himalayas?

Koen Van Huffel is organising a ‘Buy a metre of Mt. Shishapangma’ campaign. Each metre of the mountain (8,046 metres high) is being sold for Euro 3. Sponsors are allocated their pieces of mountain when they click at random on a computer screen. All the proceeds will go to MSF.  

Koen Van Huffel: “I chose Médicins Sans Frontières  because of your idealism. Of overriding importance for me was the fact that as a pluralistic organisation you provide a broad range of services (medical, paramedical, logistics, for example) and carry out both urgent and long-term programmes. I am not a health professional, but the  Himalayan expedition is my way of lending support to your work.”

The trip is expected to last roughly six weeks. A first attempt to reach the summit will be made around 18 May.

The route

The expedition is expected to last over six weeks. The itinerary  has been carefully worked out but depends to a large degree on the local situation and above all the weather conditions.

From Katmandu to Advanced Base Camp

The expedition leaders are due to meet in Kathmandu from where they will travel via Kodari (Nepalese border) to Nyalam (Tibet) and then on to Tingri (4,350m). They will travel by lorry to the Base Camp (5,000m) on the side of Shisha Pangma. The equipment will be carried to the Advanced Base camp (5,400m) by yaks and Tibetan sherpas.

Three intermediate camps

The Shisha Pangma expedition will unfold in semi-Alpine style, which means that starting from the Advanced Base camp the climbers will have to rely on themselves rather than sherpas. On the way to the summit the alpinists will have to establish a further three camps and supply them with equipment: Camp 1 (6,300m), Camp 2 (6,900m) and Camp 3 (7,300m). The highest camp will be the base of operations for reaching the summit.

Summit

People generally only climb the central summit (8,012 m) but the expedition will try to reach the main summit, the "true" summit (8,046 m). The first attempt will be made around 18 May. The expedition is due to return to the Base Camp by 21 May.

The Team:

 

S.N

Name

Nationality

Remarks

 

1.

Mr. Johan Jean de Bruyn

Belgian

Climber

 

2.

Mr. Michel S.P. Coene

Belgian

Climber

 

3.

Mr. Marc P.B.F De Sommer

Belgian

Climber

 

4.

Mr. Georges N.G Hennemont

Belgian

Climber

 

5.

Mr. Koenraad Van Huffel

Belgian

Climber

 

6.

Mr. Susan Erica Fear

Australian

Climber

7.

Mr. Pasang Chhiring Sherpa

Nepali

Climber

8.

Mr. Bhala Kazi Tamang

Nepali

Climber

9.

Mr. Ngima Dorjee Sherpa

Nepali

Cook

10.

Mr. Krishna B. Sunuwar

Nepali

KB