Everest 2011: when people want more than just reach the top

There is a group of climbers, that every year come to Everest planning to make something amazing. Englishman David Tait intends to make two climb to the summits above eight thousand meters. First, he plans to climb a new route on Lhotse, ... read more

There is a group of climbers, that every year come to Everest planning to make something amazing. Englishman David Tait intends to make two climb to the summits above eight thousand meters. First, he plans to climb a new route on Lhotse, then on Mount Everest without artificial oxygen. 69-year-old American Bill Burke with Mexican David Liano intends to make two ascents of Everest during the spring season, from two different sides. The first – by the northern route from Tibet and the second - from the south, from Nepal. 46-year-old Englishman Paul Parkinson has announced his intention to climb the western ridge of Everest solo, without oxygen and in the clothing of twenties of the last century.

George Atkinson from England plans to become the youngest conqueror of the Seven Summits, his ascent of Everest, he would commit to 29th May, when he turns 17 years old. However, he has a rival. This Romanian girl Crina Popescu, who is now in Antarctica with the 7 Summits Club. She turns 17 years until December 2011. She has currently six summits of the Seven Summits project, missing just Everest. And she plans it also for spring 2011.

 

David Tait with his partner Phurba

Bill Burke from California

 

David Liano

In our expedition led by Alex Abramov, also we will have climbers who plan to go not by the classic ways. Gleb Sokolov and Vitaly Gorelik from Siberia, plan to open a new route on the East Face of Everest, to the right of the American routes. The second idea is to make traverse of Nothern Peak of Everest to the Main Summit.

 

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BBC

 

Surrey teenager George Atkinson aims to conquer Everest George Atkinson has recently returned from climbing Mount Vinson in Antarctica

Sixteen-year-old George Atkinson from Surbiton is aiming to become the youngest person to climb the Seven Summits - the highest mountain on every continent.

He has just returned home from Antarctica and scaling Mount Vinson, his sixth successful climb.

He got the mountaineering bug from his father Mark, and by the age of 7 he had climbed the three highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales: Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdonia.

George told BBC Surrey: "My father really got me into climbing. When I was six we climbed Slieve Donard, the highest mountain in Northern Ireland.

"We did that because we needed to find something we needed to do together. I really loved it."

He started off his challenge when he climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya at the age of 11 in 2005, before scaling Europe's highest peak, Russia's Mount Elbrus, in 2007.

He then tackled Puncak Jaya, also known as Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia in 2008, followed by the South American peak Aconcagua later in the same year.

"There are a number of things that drive me. I do enjoy any mountain and I feel there is an amazing sense of freedom in any mountain range.

"I like a good challenge in life and the Seven Summits is something which gives me that.

"I find these mountains to be a good adventure by going off to exotic places and it's a good chance to travel the world."

George ticked off his fifth peak when he climbed Mount McKinley (known as Denali) in North America.

"Denali has been the toughest so far. It was full-on mountain climbing," he said.

"You land on a glacier and spend 18 days living in the snow pulling everything you need for the expedition with you, and you have to bring it back down with you.

 George on top of Denali last year

"It was harder physically and the weather was more extreme."

George is now preparing for his final climb. He will tackle Mount Everest in Nepal, which at 8,850 metres is the highest mountain in the world.

He aims to climb Everest in April or May this year, and if he is succeeds in his ascent before his 17th birthday on May 29, he will become the first person do climb every summit in the world before the age of 17.

"I have a training regime which I'm trying to keep up to. I go running twice a week to increase my lung capacity and go to the gym three times a week.

"It would mean an awful lot to get to the top of Everest. I'm not doing it just to get the record.

"I find it a good challenge. If I got the record it would be the cherry on top and finish it off well."

Kazakhs summit winter Khan Tengri for 7th Asian Winter Games

Explorersweb (By Angela Benavides). Kazakh Vasili Pivtsov, Alex Sofrygin and Ildar Gabassov bagged the summit of Khan Tengri in northern Tien Shan, yesterday. This is only the third ever summit of the peak in winter - the two previous took ... read more

Explorersweb (By Angela Benavides). Kazakh Vasili Pivtsov, Alex Sofrygin and Ildar Gabassov bagged the summit of Khan Tengri in northern Tien Shan, yesterday. This is only the third ever summit of the peak in winter - the two previous took place in February - yesterday's success is the first in the deep cold of January.

“Without exaggerating, winter conditions in Northern Tien Shan are usually harder than in winter Karakoram,” said ExWeb's correspondent in Kazakhstan Andrey Verkhovod, who provided the news.

Members of CSKA (Kazakhstan Army Sports Club) Vaso, Alex and Ildar summited Khan Tengri (7010m) yesterday at 2:30pm local time, and made it safely back to C3 (at 5,900m on the col between Kang Tengri and Peak Chapaev) for the night.

Fast push up the northern route

The entire climb was done in full winter time and rather fast: the team was airlifted to Khan’s north side BC on Jan 8th, and set up the two lower camps during their acclimatization process up the normal northern route which, in spite of the “normal” tag, is rather hard: 5b in Soviet scale, and with the most difficult section (mixed terrain, a steep couloir and a wind-exposed ridge) from 6,700m to the top.

Expedition leader Maxut Zhumayev had to be airlifted back to Almaty due to acute pulmonary problems.

Vaso, Alex, Ildar and Dmitry Khonin launched the final summit push on January 16. They set up C3 on Jan 18 and spent the following day waiting out a wind storm. Three of the climbers topped out yesterday in very hard weather that forced back Dmitry. The climbers were expected back in BC today.

First time in the coldest month

After Pobeda, Khan Tengri is the second northernmost 7000er in the world. The only two previous winter summits on Khan Tengri (in 1993 and 2002) were achieved in February, when conditions are not as tough as January’s.

The expedition was mainly supported by Kazakhstani Ecological Union Tabigat, led by Mels Eliusizov, and hoped to raise attention towards the Winter Asian Games that are due to start on January 30, in Kazakhstan.