Tuesday, August 9, 2011

FTA Spantik 2011 - headed to C1!

from stu in the usa office
9 August, 2011

Tim called in to let us know that everyone is doing really well and ready for the climb. They arrived at base camp after a beautiful trek in Arandu and found themselves one of two teams at BC. Tim said he was really taken with the expansive and flat glacier walk in and had never seen anything like it. We commonly find that members who have been to the Khumbu, Tibet, Evest, Ecuador, Peru and more find that the Spantik scenery is the finest they have ever encountered. It will be great to see all the team's pictures when they come out! In the meantime enjoy pics from previous trips below!

The other team was a joint Australia/Pakistan army team so they had some nice company! The base camp is situated about 250m above the Chogo Lugma glacier and provides a phenomenal vantage point for our team. After settling in for the night the team arose the next am to practice some fixed line work and enjoy an acclimatizing day. They were greeted with a series of 7 MI8 helicopter loads as the army team decided to call the expedition and had all their gear airlifted out! Tim said the wash from the chopper blades made a bit of mahyem with personal tents and mess tent but in the end was a good show! The members as well caught rides on the helicopters so avoided the long march out to Arandu!

The departure of the army team leaves our tiny band of climbers and staff the only expedition on the entire 7027m mountain...a glorious opportunity to climb a big remote peak with zero crowds! It has been common on our trips to Spantik to have 2-3 other teams at a time at BC and to have some company on the hill but rarely more than this. It is one of the great aspects of our Spantik expedition to have such a wonderful peak to enjoy such superb climbing with few crowds ever. Already we are making plans for next august so drop us a note if you have interest in climbing a moderate 7000m peak!

The team took advantage of the sudden calm to take a walk up to C1 the 7th of August and returned for a good supper and the joy of knowing they had a rest day to follow. The rest day of August 8th was spent prepping loads and readying for the first true foray up the hill. Today they have headed up to C1 to spend the night and enjoy an even great view of the valley below as well as to begin to get good close up views of the enormous 8km ridge they will have to climb to reach the top. If all goes well they will take loads up to C2 tomorrow and then drop all the way back to base camp. The next cycle will see them spending the night at C2 before descending or possibly making a full summit push. Based on how everyone is feeling this time around Tim will let us know the plan!

More news from Spantik to come!
FTA Spantik 2011 team and staff © Dave Hancock

view to Spantik on the trek in from Arandu
Trekking through Arandu village © chris szymiec
Nearing Spantik on the Chogo Lugma Glacier © Chris Szymiec

C2 on Spantik © Chris Szymiec

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