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|Gasherbrum I (or Hidden Peak 8068m) |
On Friday 3 August, while all other expeditions were busy preparing to return home after having endured one of the worst Himalayan seasons on record, the Italian Silvio Mondinelli reached the summit of Gasherbrum I, solo and without supplementary oxygen.
Mondinelli, who had been attempting a new route together with a strong team from Kazakhistan led by Deni Urubko, obstinately tried to reach the summit three times in quick succession, each time though he was forced to turn back due to the high risk of avalanches.
When the expedition finally decided to give up their summit bid, the Italian set off alone, producing a physical and psychological exploit. Gasherbrum I is Mondinellis third 8000m peak this year; in Spring he climbed Everest without supplementary oxygen, while on 22 July he climbed Gasherbrum II just one week after reaching Base Camp. He is now on his way back to Italy and his hometown of Alagna is bound to celebrate this outstanding season.
Other 4 members of a Basque expedition led by Jesus Maria "Txetxu" Lete (who summited GII together with Mondinelli on 22 July) reached the summit of GII despite terrible weather and avalanches constantly sweeping down the mountain.
by Manuel Lugli
Everest success for Mondinelli (25/05/2001)
Silvio "Gnaro" Mondinelli, Mountain Guide from Alagna, Italy has now climbed seven 8000m peaks: Everest ('01), Gasherbrum II ('01), Gasherbrum I ('01), Manaslu ('93), Lhotse ('94), Shisa Pangma ('96), Cho Oyu ('97)
Gasherbrum I, 8035 m
Himalaya, Karakorum - on the border between Pakistan and China.
First ascent by the Americans Swift, Clinch and Nevison on 4 July 1958.
Focus World Expeditions
Photos: Gasherbrum I and Silvio Mondinelli (archive S. Mondinelli)