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Basque mountaineer Alex Txikon has called off his attempt at climbing Everest in winter after retreating from Camp 2 (6400m) due to high winds.
Photo by Alex Txikon
During the attempt to climb Everest in winter without supplementary oxygen
Photo by archive Alex Txikon

Alex Txikon ends Everest winter expedition

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Basque mountaineer Alex Txikon has abandoned his attempt at climbing Everest in winter after retreating from Camp 2 (6400m) due to high winds.

The chances of success tend to be extremely low. Nevertheless Spain’s Alex Txikon and his team of Sherpa attempted to climb towards the summit of the highest mountain in the world one more time in winter, but once again the mountaineers were pinned down on Everest’s slopes by winds that were simply too violent.

Forced to accept the inevitable, the 35-year-old basque alpinist descended from Camp 2 (6400m) down to Base Camp with the other Sherpa and called an end to his winter expedition. This had begun towards the end of December 2016 and during a previous push the climbers had reached a highpoint at 7950m at the South Col. While the lowpoint, unfortunately, was certainly the death of liaison officer Padam Jung Rai who died due to altitude sickness in mid-January.

Txikon had carried out the historic first winter ascent of Nanga Parbat in 2015 with Simone Moro, Ali Sadpara and - to just a few metres below the summit - Tamara Lunger. Writing on facebook, Txikon stated "This isn’t a goodbye, it's a "see you later". Everest hasn’t wanted this year to conquer its heart, but what I do appreciate clearly is that it has stolen my heart. I dream, every day, since we left our home on December 25 that we reach the 8848 meters that separate us from the sky, but greed is useless in the mountain. You never have to go against nature; this is something that has been engraved during my entire career in which I have lived very difficult moments: if you don’t want the mountain defeating you, don’t end with it; respect and care of it. Therefore, although I feel very strong physically and psychologically, the winter hasn’t given a truce, the strong wind tossed us to the ground and the forecast of the next few days is terrifying."

RELATED NEWS
10/02/2017 - Everest in winter / Alex Txikon & Co start summit bid
14/02/2017 - Everest in winter / First attempt failed. Alex Txikon & Co return to Base Camp
07/03/2017 - Alex Txikon sets off on last Everest attempt

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