K2 Russian West Face expedition
A Russian team led by Victor Kozlov is attempting new line up the west face of K2 (8611m).
A highly experienced Russian team is currently attempting to forge a new line up the west face of K2 (8611m) via the impressive central bastion.
The 16 strong team, led by Victor Kozlov, set up base camp on 6 June and immediately got to work, setting up ABC at 5600m. They set foot on the west face proper on 13 June and, climbing in rotating groups of four and without supplementary oxygen, forged upwards to their current highpoint, Camp 4 at 7200m on 4 July. Fixing ropes along the entire line, they have also added a further 4 pitches above Camp 4.
Victor Kozlov describes the bastion as follows: "After the first extremely steep rock band on the bastion, which can be compared with vertical rocks on Jannu North Face, no less complex rocks are on the next, middle part of the bastion, at the altitudes above 7000 m. The climbers need not only excellent climbing skills, but must resist the altitude and pressing cold. We hope, the rock features and the weather will give us the chance to climb free further. The rock is hard, there're many long vertical cracks and inner corners, covered by ice - the good drytooling. All are brave."
Kozlov is no newcomer to these types of expeditions: in 2004 he led a successful Russian ascent by the North Face of Everest via a new route.