Alan Arnette: This is huge! K2 and Broad's first pics.
(K2Climb.net) American Alan Arnette, member of Field Touring Alpine team, had a tough start to his Broad Peak/K2 expedition – a bad stomach bug kept him in his tent fever and unable to keep any food down for days. Cold and persistent rain didn’t help either. But when he got to Concordia, the glacier-junction where the Karakorum giants reign, Alan suddenly forgot his weakness.
"It was as spectacular as I had hoped,” he reported.
Everything is – wow – huge!
“The mountains are simply stunning. It has snowed on and off the last few days so most have a fresh white coat that makes for a stunning contrast when the sky is blue. The clouds have covered Broad most of today but I did get a quick shot of K2. It is huge! Both mountains are huge! This place is huge! Well, you get the idea.”
Field Touring Alpine team reached Broad Peak’s BC yesterday. Some members will focus on BP, while others like Alan hope to give K2 a try after Broad, if time permits. The climbers still need to acclimatize, but apparently they’ve found part of the work on the mountain already done.
Teams already in C3
“We understand that an Australian and an Austrian team have already established C3 on BP, so this is excellent news as they most likely have fixed some of the route. I am sure we will have to give them something for these efforts!”
The Austrian team, led by Markus Kronthaler, had reportedly reached C1 on Sunday. If the news is confirmed (*1), it will mean these guys are progressing – very fast!
(*1)Ed. Note: Alan reported the facts yesterday, from a camp at Concordia. Arnette was one behind the rest of the team due to a stomach bug. He reached BC today, while his team-mates slept in Broad Peak’s base camp already yesterday.
Dave Hancock’s Australian outfitter Field Touring Alpine has launched the first commercial expedition for both Broad Peak and K2. Although not exactly guided (each climber must be self-sufficient and decided on schedules), the team is fully supported.
The huge team consists of 25 international climbers, most of them fairly experienced in altitude and ranging from 23 to 62 years old. Some of them will attempt the double-header while others are only aiming for Broad. A few members will be climbing K2 without O2; those using supplementary oxygen be using Poisk for the climb. Climbing team leader is Jeff Justman.
The team will climb BP from the standard West Ridge route. Meanwhile, their altitude porters will fix lines and set the first camps on K2. Once acclimatized, the climbers will go for the Abruzzi Spur on K2. They are hopeful that they’ll need only a couple of climbs to C1 and C3 before a definitive summit bid.
American Alan Arnette is a member of the double-header team, and also collaborated in organizing the expedition.