Uli Biaho new route by Kopold and Cmarik
Dodo Kopold and Gabo Cmarik have made the f.a. of the NW Face of Uli Biaho 6417m, Karakorum, Pakistan. They also climbed a route up Hainabrakk East Tower (5800m) to 5375m.
|Dodo Kopold and Gabo Cmarik have done it again. The two climbers from Slovakia, who last year braved their impressive new Assalam Alaikum up the Great Trango tower, returned to Pakistan's Karakorum in June where they bagged the first ascent of the NW Face of Uli Biaho 6417m in a 54 hour alpine style round trip.
Prior to this success the duo attempted a new route up Hainabrakk East Tower (5800m) located close to Uli Biaho in the Trango valley, and up the Shipton Spire, but were thwarted by difficult conditions and illness. Their expedition report is published below:
Uli Biaho 6417m
Drastissima VI/6 ABO 2200m, 54 hours, 21-23.06.2006
Alpine style, no bolts
I had examined the north-west face of Uli Biaho for 3 years searching for a line, but I couldn’t find a safe way up. The wall is steep, with hard ice and a dangerous summit ridge. Until this time nobody had attempted this face.
We started to climb the dangerous couloir during the night and in the morning we reached the bottom of the main ice wall. We climbed the first 100m of 90 degree ice and then we continued up steep section to our rest place. We dug a small ledge to sit on in the hard ice. The night was cold and without sleeping bags it started to become horrible, so after a few hours of rest we continued climbing.
The hardest place was in front of us. Thin ice was just stuck on the rock. Ten metres below the summit I had to make the belay because it was impossible to climb to the summit together. The snow ridge was not stable enough for two people. It's like a big snow mushroom, like on Cerro Torre. We rappelled down all night, using just Abalaks. We didn't use bolts neither during their ascent nor during the descent.
Hainabrakk 5800m, no summit
Dolzag Dihedral VI/6 1000m, 40 hours, 08-09.06.2006
This was our second attempt in this route. During the first attempt we were hit by an avalanche and I was also hit by falling ice. As a result of this experience we started to climb at midnight, as we wanted to avoid falling ice and avalanches. The ice was in very good condition. Steep, often 90 degrees and very hard. We climbed fast and after one bivi we reached the summit ridge of Hainabrakk. We wanted to continue to the summit but we couldn’t climb the steep rock tower on the ridge in 5375m. We descended the same way.
Shipton Spire (NF), 6000m
Steep ice, snow blown on the flats and a long ridge with snow mushrooms. This is the north face of Shipton. Still unclimbed. We climbed the first 500m through this dangerous terrain. At eight o'clock in the morning Gabo climbed to belay. He was all green-red and had suffered a sunstroke. He was sick so we descended. The climbing there was fantastic. Excellent ice conditions.
by Dodo Kopold