The long-awaited moment has finally arrived. The Spanish expedition led by Basque mountaineer Alex Txikon to climb Everest in winter and without supplementary oxygen has started its decisive summit push begun in earnest. A weather window is forecast for 14 to 18 February 2017.
So far this feat has only been achieved by one other person, namely Ang Rita Sherpa who reached the top on December 22, 1987. It has to said that even with supplementary oxygen the task in hand is huge, so much so that for the last 25 years Everest has never been climbed in winter. The first winter ascent of Everest, carried out on February 17, 1980 by Krzysztof Wielicki and Leszek Cichy from Poland, made history and simultaneously paved the way for a new era of Himalayan mountaineering, since it was the first ever 8000r to be climbed in the winter.
The mountaineers are now back on the mountain, committed to what may turn out to be the decisive summit bid. Shortly before setting off on Feb 9th Txikon tweeted: “IT’S TIME! Tomorrow, we leave for the 2C. From February 14-18 a window of good weather is foreseen. I need you here with me more than ever!”. According to their GPS tracker, the first group has now reached Camp 2. Txikon is accompanied by Aitor Barez and Pablo Magister, and six Sherpa: Norbu, Nuri, Chhepal, Furba, Lakpa and Pemba. Norbu has climbed to the top of Everest seven times previously and Nuri three.
Soon afterwards there was an update on Alex’s twitter feed stating that the team has successfully reached C2 “With the feet at the 2C (6400m) & the heart in the top of the world. Now, it’s time to rest & to enjoy every step forward!”
We hope that you have loads of fun and rest at C2! Wish you all the best!