Kazakhs Urubko and Samoilov SUMMIT Manaslu
First summit in three years
Denis and Serguey have achieved the first summit on Manaslu since 2003.
The Kazakh pair shares a climbing permit with other climbers in an international team whose members split up some days ago - each of them climbing at a different pace and following different strategies. While most of the climbers hoped to reach C1 or set C2 and then return to BC, the Kazakhs decided to try their luck on a single summit push, despite the mountain being rather over-loaded with snow. Previously, Denis and Serguey had only climbed up to C1, and were forced back due to a snow storm that lasted several days.
Main goal: A new route
Denis Urubko and Serguey Samoilov were nominated for the Piolet d’Or 2005, for a new route opened last summer on Broad Peak’s SW face. Their main goal on Manaslu is reportedly to open a new route, perhaps on its West face. However, they hoped to first climb from the normal route in order to acclimatize and check the mountain’s conditions.
On July 25th, 2005, Kazakhs Denis Urubko and Serguey Samoilov completed a new route on Broad Peak’s SW face in alpine style. No one else has officially reached the real summit of BP that year.
Denis Urubko is considered one of the top climbers today. Last year, he opened a new route on the North Face of Baruntse together with Simone Moro, and made a night summit on Annapurna in bad weather conditions. Denis has summited nine 8000ers. He summitted BP already on July 18, 2003, through the normal route. He and Ed Viesturs carried out a nighttime rescue of Jean-Christophe Lafaille when he suffered pulmonary edema on descent. Denis has done many summits, but also sacrificed summits to help climbers in trouble, some of whom he had never met before.
Manaslu is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its first ascent. Climbing fees have been reduced by 50% for the occasion. However, reaching the summit has proved a tough task – no one has made it since 2003. Deep snow and bad weather prevented a bunch of teams from reaching the top in spring 2005.
The latest climbers to summit Manaslu were Polish Piotr Pustelnik and Krzysztof Tarasewicz in 2003. High winds caused the climbers to fall 300m, nearly knocking them off the mountain on their descent.
The pair used a compass to guide them through the snow storm, but Pustelnik sustained frostbite on four of his fingers. Having summited twelve 8,000m peaks, he stated, “I found the expedition to Manaslu the hardest compared to my last three climbs. Maybe K2 in 1996 from the North was harder. I didn't have such bad weather even on Kangchenjunga in 2001, and now I understand why even excellent climbers were talking about Manaslu with such a deep respect.”
Now the Kazakh pair has broken the spell.
Further information at: http://www.mounteverest.net/news.php?id=1882