|Success on Jannu! A jubilant call from expedition leader Alexander Odintsov to www.mountain.ru says it all: Alexandre Ruchkin and Dmitry Pavlenko have finally summited Jannu via the formidable North Face. The duo had attempted a first summit bid early yesterday morning, but strong winds had forced them back to their portaledge at 7400m. Weather conditions permitting, Sergey Borisov and Gennadi Kirievsky will make a second summit bid tomorrow.
The nine-man Russisan expedition started work at the start of April and slowly but surely established four camps up the steep Himalayan bigwall (camp I 5600m, camp II 6700m, camp III 7000m and a portaledge at 7400m). They fixed ropes throughout the climb, battling against constant snowfall, high winds and the sheer verticality of the face. Team member Mikhai Mikhaylov explained that above 7000m: "there is no meter where you can relax: it's either a vertical or hanging wall".
This is Odintsov's second expedition to the north Face of Jannu. In October 2003 his team set an impressive highpoint of 7200m before retreating due to avalanche danger.
Jannu North Face Expedition Spring 2004
Alexandre Odintsov, S-Peterburg - leader
Alexandre Ruchkin, S-Peterburg - climber
Michail Pershin, S-Peterburg/Ekaterinburg - climber
Nikolay Totmyanin, S-Peterburg - climber
Dmitry Pavlenko, Moscow/Ekaterinburg - climber
Alexey Bolotov, Ekaterinburg - climber
Sergey Borisov, Ekaterinburg - climber
Gennadi Kirievsky, Ekaterinburg - climber
Mikhail Mikhaylov, Bishkek - camera-man
Full reports and photo courtesy of www.mountain.ru