Wilco van Rooijen's Chogori lesson - once bitten, twice shy
(K2Climb.net) After successfully reaching both the North Pole in 1997, the South Pole from Patriot Hills in 2000, and Everest without supplemental O2 in 2004, Dutch Wilco van Rooijen is now on his way to the Karakorum range for the highest possible double-header: Broad Peak and K2.
K2’s painful lesson
Wilco already attempted K2 in 1996 – back then he learned first hand just how dangerous the peak can be: He was hit by falling rocks on the way to C2, and had to be evacuated off the mountain with a head wound and open fractures at his shoulder and arm.
Over the last couple of years Wilco has been thinking about a strategy on how to spend less time on this hazardous mountain. He concluded that climbing Broad Peak first would be the best way to acclimatize and therefore spend less time on K2. All he needed now was a team to execute his plan.
Logistical problems? Join the big fish
In 2004 Wilco summited Everest w/o O2 leading a team of three. But a Karakorum double header provides the Dutch climber with a challenge even greater than the summit, and that is logistics. But then he heard about the huge team being launched by Australian Outfitter Field Touring Alpine - and his worries, for the most part, were over. Wilco ran to sign up for the expedition.
FTA's team has 25 confirmed members. However, despite taking care of logistics and strategy, Wilco won't be exactly 'guided' to the summit.
“This is not a traditional guided expedition," organizer Alan Arnette told ExplorersWeb. "We turned down a lot of applicants who did not have sufficient mountaineering experience and needed a more traditional guided approach.”
Higher camps awaiting on K2 for BP climbers
The FTA team will split up into three groups: One for Broad Peak, one for K2 and one for the Double Header. The advantage is that the K2 group will have established camps on the slopes by the time the Double Header group arrives, including Wilco. They can therefore ascend pretty fast if weather and personal condition permits.
Prior to departure, Wilco said that he sees Broad Peak as a serious climb, not just a warming up session for K2. In fact, should he succeed, he would be the first Dutchman to reach its summit he says.
Wilco and the FTA team members are already trekking along the Baltoro glacier. They expect to reach Broad’s BC tomorrow. Wilco will send dispatches and video images using Contact 3.0. Software.
Dutch Wilco van Rooijen summited Everest in 2004 without supplementary O2. After a previous attempt in 1996, he is back to K2 this summer. Prior from climbing the Savage Mountain though, he will climb Broad Peak. Wilco will climb as member of the Field Touring Alpine team.
In addition to mountaineering, Wilco is a seasoned Polar explorer. He reached the North Pole in 1997and the South Pole in 2000. His Antarctica trip is not considered complete since he started from Patriot Hills Base instead of Hercules Inlet on the coast. However, his was a tough, cool expedition: After reaching the Pole, he kited all the way back to PH.
Autor: Exploerersweb Inc.