UPDATE 7 (5:00 pm in Pakistan): Chhang Dawa reports that Sajid Sadpara has made it to Base Camp, although there is no detail concerning young Sadpara’s condition.
Efforts to pinpoint John Snorri’s position using the signal from his Thuraya phone have not provided conclusive results.
UPDATE 6 (3:30 pm in Pakistan):
Meanwhile, families and friends in Iceland (where the Foreign Affairs Minister is involved), Pakistan (where Ali’s friends are coordinating operations from Lahore), and Chile are working hard. They maintain hope that John Snorri, JP Mohr and Ali Sadpara, as well as Sajid Sadpara, might yet make it off K2.
The best bet is to locate the climbers through their satellite phone signal, which can be tracked even when the device is off. Arrangements have been made to obtain the necessary permits with Pakistan’s Military Authorities. These permissions are required for telecommunications company Thuraya Pakistan to disclose the information and results are expected at any moment.
ExWeb’s expert Jacek Teler:
“[…] there are two options: If they turned back because of the wind (at around 2 or 3 pm yesterday) they should have returned to Camp 3 before midnight. But, if nothing prevented them from reaching the summit (low wind, enough oxygen, enough light etc), then they should descend to Camp 3 this morning. If they made it, their fate depends ONLY on themselves. Neither helicopters nor climbers on foot can help above Camp 3. Increasing winds are making the situation extremely dangerous.”
UPDATE 5 (2:30 pm in Pakistan):
Army’s Helicopter made a search flight almost up to 7000m and returned back to Skardu, unfortunately, they can not trace anything and The condition up in the mountain and even at the basecamp is getting poor. We are looking for further progress, but the weather and winds are not permissible.
Sajid safely reached Camp I, he will descend to Advance Base Camp very soon, sent more help for him to Advance BC.
Source: Dawa Sherpa on FB
UPDATE 4 (2:00 pm in Pakistan):
A Pakistani military helicopter will take Sherpas high on K2, exact height unknown, to launch a search party for the missing three.
It’s unclear how high the helicopters can go with winds gusting over 30 mph [50 kmh] at 20,000-feet [over 6,000 m]. I understand that 7,000-meters is about their ceiling so that would be between C2 and C3 on the Black Pyramid.
Juan Pablo (JP) Mohr Prieto [Chile] was climbing without supplemental oxygen.
UPDATE 3 (12:00 am in Pakistan):
“I told 2 of the Sherpas (Temba Bhote and Phurbu Kusang) of our team to stay stand by at C I to prepare food and hot water for Sajid and also incase Sajid needs help on the way back.
Received confirmed message from Army, they sent two helicopters along with 2 Pakistani Climbers, for Search and Rescue mission. The pilot has been instructed to take the flight up as maximum as possible, it’s very low temperature and 35+ KM wind above 6500m. At the basecamp, now we have prepared oxygen bottles, high foods, masks, and regulators for 2 Pakistani climbers (HAP).
Now at Basecamp – Waiting Army Helicopter” – Dawa Sherpa
UPDATE 2 (11:00 am in Pakistan):
Two helicopters have departed for K2. Meanwhile, Sajid Sadpara has started descending from Camp 3 and sources in Pakistan say that two Sherpas from Seven Summit Treks will head up to meet him.
Ali Saltoro of Alpine Adventures reports that Imitaz and Akbar, two skilled HAP from Sadpara village, are onboard the helicopter. They took part in the Daniele Nardi and Tom Ballard rescue attempt on Nanga Parbat two years ago. They will climb as high as possible, although they are not acclimatized.
Winds are increasing. The rescuers are up against the clock and every minute counts. The helicopters were originally meant to search the mountain for signs of missing climbers John Snorri, Ali Sadpara, and JP Mohr, but they may not be able to fly above Base Camp.
Helicopters are also said to be evacuating frostbitten climbers from Base Camp, but we are waiting for further details.
UPDATE 1 (10:00 am in Pakistan):
It’s reported that Sajid Ali Sadpara is descending from Camp 3.
Pemba Sherpa, who was with Noel Hanna, stayed at Camp 1 and will help him down.
Unconfirmed: A Pakistani military helicopter will take sherpas high on K2, exact height unknown, to launch a search party for the missing three.
Note that none of the GPS trackers seem to be working anymore. I assume their batteries have run out, perhaps also for their headlamps and even radios.
Computer generated weather forecast have the summit temps at -42F/-41C with a wind chill at -80F/-62C.
At 2 am in Pakistan, there is still no news of John Snorri, Ali Sadpara and Juan Pablo Mohr. Sajid Sadpara is in Camp 3, but has seen no trace of their headlamps, 14 hours after they separated.
It is not possible to know what may have happened since they parted ways at the Bottleneck.
We don’t know about the state of fixed ropes, the ice conditions under the Great Serac or the risk of slab avalanches on the Shoulder. We do not know if they might have got lost in the dark on the way down, or if they are simply exhausted and moving down slowly or trying to get shelter.
What we do know is that dawn will come in less than four hours.
We also know that they are all strong, skilled climbers. Ali, in particular, is the most experienced winter 8,000m climber on the expedition.
We know that the temperatures were extremely cold even for winter K2, and that winds will increase tomorrow, mostly in the afternoon, as the jet stream descends on the mountain.
We know, therefore, that 22-year-old Sajid Sadpara may soon have to make the hardest call of his life and go down, with or without his father and his climbing partners.
Finally, we know that if there is someone in Base Camp fit enough to go up and meet Sajid along the route and help him make it down, that person should start preparing his backpack.
Source: Angela Benavides – EXPLORERSWEB
These climbers are all now reported back at Base Camp:
- Tamara Lunger
- Noel Hanna
- Bernhard Lippert
- Tomasz Rotar
- Colin O’Brady
- Antonios Sykaris
- Bernhard Lippert
- Tomasz Rota
- Atanas Georgiev Skatov deceased below Camp 3. Body recovered by Sona Sherpa, Pechhumbe Sherpa, Dawa Sherpa and flown back to Skardu
Seven Summits Trekking Sherpas
- Lhakpa Temba Sherpa
- Mingma Temba Sherpa
- Lakpa Dendi Sherpa
- Phurbu Kusang Sherpa
- Lakpa Nurbu Sherpa
- Pasang Dukpa Sherpa
- Pastemba Sherpa
- Temba Bhote Sherpa
Still on the mountain:
Antonios Sykaris, should descend Saturday K2 time
Last position at Camp 3:
Sajid Ali Sadpara
- John Snorri Sigurjonsson
- Muhammad Ali Sadpara
- Juan Pablo (JP) Mohr Prieto
Source: Alan Arnette