Showing posts with label Mountains. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mountains. Show all posts

K2 | Routes & Deaths on K2 | Theinfromationworld

K2 is located in Karakoram mountain range in Baltistan Pakistan. It is the second-highest peak in the world, with a peak rising 8611m (28251ft) above sea level. For most climbers, a climb to K2 is more difficult for them than the gigantic Mount Everest. It is accessible from both China and Pakistan. In Pakistan, it can be accessed via Askoli Shigar valley while in China it can be accessed via Shaksgam valley.

Naming of K2
K2 was named as such for the first time by a British surveyor named T.G Montgomerie  in 1852 during his first survey of Karakoram Great Trigonometric Survey of India. They named the two most prominent peaks as K1 and K2 while surveying from Mount Harmukh some 200km towards the south. But the local Balti people started to call K1 as Masherbrum and K2 as Chhoghori. A few years later the name Masherbrum was used officially but the name K2 remained the same, The ‘K’ was in the reference to the Karakoram mountain range and the ‘2’ referring to the fact that it was the second-highest peak recorded in the world.

Climbing routes
Mountaineers use the routes which are pre-determined by the classic mountaineers like Prince Luigi Amedeo. There are many routes up to the top, the names of those routes are West ridge(A), West face(b), Southwest pillar(C), South face(D), South-southeast spur(E), Abruzzi spur(F).

The Abruzzi Spur Route
The standard route out of all the routes is the Abruzzi spur route, this route is located on the Pakistan side. Prince Luigi Amedeo, Duke of the Abruzzi first attempted this route in 1909. So in the recognition of his work this route is named the Abruzzi spur route. 75% of all the climbers use this route to reach the summit. This is the Southeast Ridge of the peak, rising above the Godwin-Austen Glacier. The spur properly begins at an altitude of 5,400m.

The North Ridge Route
The North Ridge is the most dangerous and difficult route to the summit of K2. Due to extreme difficult access, including crossing the Shaksgam River, this route is rarely climbed. It is present almost at the opposite side of the Abruzzi spur route. This route is accessed via the Chinese side of the mountain.

The Northeast Ridge Route
This is the long route that finishes on the uppermost part of the Abruzzi route. This ridge was first crossed by a Polish expedition led by Janusz Kurczab in 1976, but the team was unable to reach the top due to poor weather conditions.

The West Ridge Route
The West Ridge route begins on the Negrotto Glacier, it was first climbed in 1981 by a Japanese team. The technical aspects of this climb include traversing and unpredictable bands of rocks and snowfields.

The Southwest Pillar (Magic Line) Route
The Southwest Pillar route is considered to be the second most demanding, it is also a technically challenging route to start with. It was first climbed by a Polish-Slovak expedition. Another known successful attempt to climb this route was accomplished by Jordi Corominas from Spain in 2004.

The South Face (Polish line, Central Rib) Route
The South Face route is the most dangerous, exposed and demanding of all. Jerzy Kukuczka and Tadeusz Piotrowski were the first to climb on this route in 1986, Piotrowski was killed during descending. The entrance to this route is via the Pakistan side. It starts off the first part of the Southwest Pillar and then gradually deviates into a highly exposed, snowy cliff area. This route further proceeds through a gully known as “The Hockey Stick”, and goes through another exposed cliff-face, and the route goes continuously through another highly exposed all the way up to the point at which the route joins with the Abruzzi spur route about 300m before the summit. This route is so avalanche-prone, that’s why after Jerzy Kukuczka and Tadeusz Piotrowski no one has ever tried to climb on this route.

The Northwest Face Route
This route is popular for its chaotic rock and snowfields all the way up to the top. Access to this route is via the Chinese side. The route was first ascended by a Japanese team in 1990 from the Chinese side of the mountain.

The Northwest Ridge Route
The first attempt to climb the Northwest Ridge Route was accomplished in 1991 and it finishes on the North Ridge.

The South-southeast Spur (Cesen Route, Basque Route)
The South-southeast Spur is considered to be the safest way to summit because it avoids the Black Pyramid, it passes above the Black Pyramid and below Bottleneck. Tomo ńĆesen was the first person who ascended to 8,000m via this route in 1986. The first successful summit via this route was accomplished by the Basque team in 1994.

The West Face
The West Face Route is a technically challenging at higher altitude. It was first ascended by a Russian team in 2007, this route almost completely comprises of rock crevasses and snow-capped couloirs.

Achille Compagnoni on K2's summit

Deaths on K2
K2 the second-highest mountain in the world, only 237m shorter than Mount Everest, has a high death rate, more than the other mountains. For every 100 climbers that attempted a summit on K2, 29 have died. For Everest this ratio is low. For every 100 mountaineers to attempt a summit on Everest, 4 will die. It is clear that K2 is more dangerous and difficult to climb than Everest. Only 306 climbers have completed the task of getting to the top of K2, but 80+ have been dismissed. Compared to Everest, 5,600 people have obtained their dreams of summiting Everest but only 300 have died while summiting Everest.


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