Everest in winter / First attempt failed. Alex Txikon & Co return to Base Camp
14/02/2017: The mountaineers attempting to climb Everest in winter without supplementary oxygen have returned to Base Camp. Alex Txikon, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa had reached South Col at 7950m but were forced to descend due to high winds. 12/02/2017: The Everest winter expedition without supplementary oxygen led by Alex Txikon continues to make progress. The Basque mountaineer, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa and have now reached Camp 3 (7400m).
UPDATE ON 14/02/2017 AT 17:25
The first attempt at climbing Everest in winter and without supplemental oxygen has failed. Basque alpinist Alex Txikon and his five climbing partners Nurbu Sherpa, Cheppal Sherpa, Nuri Sherpa, Pemba Sherpa and Furba Sherpa had set off in two groups of three climbers last week towards the summit of the highest mountain in the world. Yesterday, Monday, February 13, Alex Txikon, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa managed to reach the South Col at 7950m but strong winds and low temperatures (estimated at around -40°C) prevented them from pitch a tent. The trio was forced to descend to Camp 3. After a night at 7400m, according to data sent from Txikon’s GPS Tracker the mountaineers returned to Base Camp a few hours ago. Official confirmation came a few minutes ago with an update via Txikon’s Twitter channel. Txikon had described the ascent to the South Col as more difficult than his ascent to the summit of Nanga Parbat, carried out a year ago together with Simone Moro and Ali Sadpara and, just a few meters below the summit, with Tamara Lunger. In his succinct tweet from Base Camp Txikon announced that it has not yet fully abandoned his attempt at climbing Everest in winter.
UPDATE ON 13/02/2017
Today Alex Txikon, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa slowly climbed from Camp 3 to Camp 4 at the South Col at 7950m where they should have begun their final bid for the summit. Due to strong winds the trio failed to pitch the tent they had deposited at the the col previously, and were forced to descend to Camp 3. They will now review their strategy, being in mind their current form and the prevailing weather conditions. It’s worth remembering that staying at this altitude, in winter, is hellish and that consequently these are decisive days, if not hours.
PUBLISHED ON 12/02/2017
As reported Friday, the Everest winter expedition led by Alex Txikon is currently engaged in its bid for the summit. The mountaineers aim to reach the 8850m high summit in winter and without supplementary oxygen.
The push began on February 10, 2017 after having spent the previous weeks establishing camps on the flanks of the highest mountain in the world. Txikon, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa reached Camp 2 at 6390m later that day and were joined by three other Sherpa - Nuri, Pemba and Furba - the next day.
Yesterday, Sunday 11 February, all rested at Camp 2 while today the 35-year-old Basque alpinist, Nurbu Sherpa and Cheppal Sherpa ascended to Camp 3 at 7400m. Nuri, Pemba and Furba will join them tomorrow.
If all goes according to plan, the group will then proceed to the South Col at 7950m where a few days ago they deposited some gear and from where their summit push true and proper will begin. The weather window is forecast for 14 to 18 February 2017.
Communicating on Facebook a few minutes ago, Txikon stated "we are very strong physically and psychologically; the truth is that we form a great team! We have had to renew the equipment in several sections that have been swept by the storm, but our positivity remains intact. Now it’s time to review the part to see the strategy of the next few days based on my instinct and the predictions of our expert meteorologists, among them Vítor Bahía (vitorbaiameteo.pt) - for me a guru. I leave you very cold, thank you very much for being there. Tomorrow will be another day!"
10/02/2017 - Everest in winter / Alex Txikon & Co start summit bid
The Spanish expedition led by Basque mountaineer Alex Txikon to climb Everest in winter and without supplementary oxygen has begun in earnest. A weather window is forecast for 14 to 18 February 2017.