K2 was climbed without supplementary oxygen today by Adrian Ballinger and Carla Perez. Shortly beforehand the summit of the second highest mountain in the world was reached by Nirmal Purja and his sherpa team climbing with O2.
Adrian Ballinger climbing K2. Photo by Esteban Mena
Just when the pre-monsoon season seemed lost, when the vast majority of teams on the mountain had abandoned their attempts due to the extremely dangerous snow conditions above the Bottleneck, the news comes in that some teams have managed to submit K2 after all.
8611 meters tall, the summit of the second highest mountain in the world was reached without the use of supplemental oxygen by America’s Adrian Ballinger and Ecuador’s Carla Perez who climbed the Cesen route with a support group comprised of Esteban Mena, Palden Namgye and Pemba Gelje Sherpa. These three summited too, probably with supplementary oxygen.
Perfectly acclimatised, this group teamed up with 35-year-old Nirmal Purja, the Nepalese mountaineer and former Gurkha who, with the help of supplementary oxygen, is attempting to climb all 14 eightthousanders in just 7 months.
After having arrived at Base Camp just two days ago, Purja immediately met up with Ballinger and asked for a first short at the section above the Bottleneck that had thwarted previous expeditions. Together with Lakpadendi Sherpa, Gesman Tamang, Changba Sherpa and Lakpa Temba Sherpa he rapidly reached Camp 4 at 7950m, while yesterday at 22.20 the group made its summit bid, reaching the top of the Savage Mountain at 7:50 am this morning. According to initial reports still to be confirmed, it appears that the recent jet stream swept away the dangerous snow around the Bottleneck, and that ropes were fixed all the way to the summit.
Currently the teams are descended and are expected in Base Camp for more details. Purja has now climbed ten 8000ers in just over three months (with the use of supplementary oxygen). His next goal will be Broad Peak.
This article first appeared on http://www.planetmountain.com. The original can be read here.