Monday, March 29, 2010

First Peak Ascent, Takargo (6,771m), Rolwaling Himal, Nepal

In one of our biggest overall mountain climbing efforts ever, David and I completed the first peak ascent of Takargo (6,771 meters) in the Rolwaling Himal of Nepal via the east face.

The climb was completed in a 12-day effort, without a rest day, round trip from the small Sherpa village of Beding (3,700 meters), where we had spent most of the previous month ice climbing.  Due to the remote nature of the peak, most of the effort was spent on the approach and descent, with just 3 days spent on the mountain itself.  Poor snow conditions and rugged terrain plagued most of the approach, but once on the mountain, conditions turned positive with mostly good snow and excellent ice.

Read about the full ascent on our Climb Nepal Blog:

Takargo from the east:  (Photo: JP)

David on the summit ridge: (Photo: JP)

Discovering a new ice-climbing area in the Nepal Himalaya

In February, David Gottlieb and I discovered, explored, and climbed in what may be perhaps one of Asia's greatest ice climbing venues, the Rolwaling Valley of Nepal.  Over the course of the month we climbed over a dozen frozen waterfalls from 2 pitch WI 5 and 6's to a 700-meter WI 4 and everything in between.  The high concentration of ice located just a short distance from the main Sherpa village of Beding was astounding.  And there is much more to be explored, with at least 30 high quality lines and we speculate 50 or more under idea conditions.

Check out the full account of our climbing adventure on our Climb Nepal Blog:

The Nemari Area climbs including Nemari left (WI 5+, 4 pitches) and Nemari Right (WI 5, 5 pitches):

David Gottlieb leading in the 700m Beyul canyon (WI 4).

Monday, March 15, 2010

2010 Mugs Stump Award

I am super psyched to announce that I have received the 2010 Mugs Stump Award for an upcoming climb in Tibet this fall.  One of America's most prestigious climbing awards, this grant will go a long ways in helping David Gottlieb and I follow our alpine climbing and mountain exploration dreams.

I'd like to thank the following companies for granting the award as well as their continued support in keeping the program alive:
Black Diamond, Mountain Gear, Patagonia, Gor-Tex, and Alpinist.

From the Mugs Stump Award website:
More About the Mugs Stump Award
All of the alpine objectives awarded embody the spirit of the late Mugs Stump. Mugs Stump was best known for his first ascent of the Emperor Face on Mount Robson in the Canadian Rockies and a triptych of brilliant Alaskan climbs—the East Face of the Moose's Tooth, the Moonflower Buttress on Mount Hunter, and a one-day solo of Denali's Cassin Ridge. He sought out striking and highly technical objectives, preferably first ascents, in some of the most remote mountains of the world. Mugs saw climbing as a celebration of boldness, purity, and simplicity.
Applications are reviewed for how they further the legacy of Mugs Stump with climbs proposed in the spirit of adventure and exploration, and that emphasize light, fast, leave-no-trace climbing. Award applicants are evaluated on the strength of their objective, the strength of their team, and on an objective that raises the bar defining what is possible in alpinism today.