David Lama is an Austrian sport climber and mountaineer who has explore the mountains of Karakoram for Red Bull. Check out the video by him and his partner Peter Ortner climbing the famous mountain of "Chogolisa" which is one of the mountain of Karakorum.
Transcript of the video:I have been in Pakistan with my partner Peter Ortner for four weeks now. This is our first trip to Pakistan, two weeks ago we climbed the Trango Tower and since then we are sitting in Chogolisa Basecamp on the Vigne glacier.
The Chogolisa is a mountain that is 7600 meters high and completely covered in snow. According to locals it hasn’t been summited since 1986. Peter and I are rock climbers, and therefore a mountain that consists only of snow and ice like Chogolisa is some sort of an unusual goal for us. Usually we are mostly searching cool, alpine walls and faces, where it is all about demanding climbing. But our appeal here is the quest for a high altitude experience, which we will need for sure for our upcoming projects.
The weather has been miserable ever since we reached Chogolisa Basecamp. It has been raining and snowing the whole time, and we haven’t been able to do much, except for the last spell of good weather, when we hiked to the end of the glacier with our skis.
We spent the night there and then climbed steep snow and ice faces the next day up to 6400 meters.
The weather is horrible. Three hours ago the sun was burning down on us and now there is a snowstorm.
I can’t see further than twenty meters.
The descent was really tough. Fog came in on us as we were descending snow ridges, which drop a thousand meters to both sides.
We knew that any mistakes would be fatal here. The rock was quite loose, getting down was really demanding.
When we reached the big snow face, there was suddenly a hole in the clouds and it cleared up. We immediately stepped into our skis and rode them down, which was pure enjoyment. And ever since, the weather has been miserable again.
It’s raining in base camp and snowing on the mountain, all we can do is wait. In four days we already have to go back home, but Charly Gabl predicted a last spell of good weather. We hope we can take advantage of it and make it to the summit.
It took us two days to climb back up to the point where we retreated last time.
There we made a small platform into the snow, pitched our tent and started off again around midnight the next day.
The biggest danger on a mountain like the Chogolisa arises from avalanches. You can barely imagine the dimensions… of the faces you are climbing on, and in that respect the risk is only calculable to a certain extent.
All the experience I gained on Chogolisa is really valuable to me. Even though, or maybe just because it wasn’t the kind of climbing we are used to, we had to go to our limits. We had to break trails through knee deep snow for 2500 meters in altitude.
On the summit face every step was painful. I often thought to myself how easy it would be to turn around. I’m a climber, what am I doing here?
But when I reached the summit ridge and saw the stunning panorama in front of me, like an ocean of mountains, I knew exactly what I had come to the Chogolisa for. The high altitude experience that I’ve made, no one will take that away from me. I’ll make use of that experience when I come back to climb these mountains I saw.
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