Korean Highway Corporation 2002 Shishapangma Expedition

Mr. Sang-hyun Mo who reached the summits on both Everest and K2 in the same year (2000) attempted Shishapangma as a member of the Korea Highway Corporation team.  They attempted a new route in semi alpine style. They arrived at Base Camp at the beginning of the month and this is the report of the expedition below:

Update 5/17/2002: Korean Alpinists Climb New Route on SW Face of Shishapangma
South Korean alpinists Park Jun Hun, 31 & Kang Yeon Ryoung, 30 made semi alpine style successful ascent of Shishapangma on the 05 May '02 via a new route on the South West Face of the mountain.  Maneuvering a 250 meter  steep rock and ice face right at the start of the climb, they gained access to  the  huge snow field coming below the Left Hand Couloir climbed by Loretan/Troillet/Kurtyka in 1990 and flanking towards the Central Buttress route climbed by Stemfelj/Kozjek in 1989.  At 6800m. laboring 3 hours to dig a suitable platform, they put a 3 men tent camp at the head of the snow field on a narrow ridge next to a narrow couloir which led them to a smaller snow field right below the huge buttress near the summit.
Climbing up from Camp I on the 4th May, Park and Kang found a little spot to erect a two men tent at the foot of the buttress at 7350m. for the summit push next day. On the 5th May, they  left Camp II around 6.00 am and soon faced with a challenge to over come a 150 meter solid rock face. It took them 4 hours to climb the face which also posed the biggest technical challenge of the whole climb.  Above the rock face, they found an easier snow slope leading to the summit, which they reached at 4.00pm.  Due to clouds building up in surrounding from local weather, they couldn't not much view on the summit to admire even though their mood happily elated  having just completed a challenging and very satisfactory new route on the mountain.  After taking time to complete the customary summit photo and spend a few minutes quiet time to ponder on their climb, they carefully made their descent from the mountain reaching at their tent at Camp II around 9.00pm.

This 8 member expedition, Korea Highway Co-operation Shishapangma Expedition was led my Mr. Yark Jang Soo, 45.  The expedition team left Kathmandu on 26 April and reached base camp on 06 May.  They set their ABC at 5400 meter on the 10 May.  Even though the climb above Camp was completed by Park and Kang in all alpine style, other expedition team member help prepare about 1500 meter of fix rope from the base of the mountain at 5700 meter to Camp I 6200m. 

About the Summiteers:

Park Jung Hun, 31, is among of the finest climbers of Korea.  He is also the leading 'South ( West) Face' Korean alpinist having successfully climbed the South Face Annapurna in 1994, the South West Face of Everest in 1995 and now a new route on Shishapangma on the South West Face.  He has also summitted on K2 and few other 8000 meter peaks. He is also well known in Korea for his climbs in the European Alps.

Kang Yeon Ryoung, 30 seeks the challenges and finding thrill in climbing 8000 meter Faces.  He was member of the 2002 Korean South East Face Cho-Oyu expedition.  He has climb Shivaling in 1995, Gasherbrum IV in 1999 and K2 in the summer of 2000.

(Above report based on interview with summiteer Kang Yeon Ryoung by AKS)

For the picture of the route of the Korean Alpinists Route on SW Face of Shishapangma see here.