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K2 and Broad Peak

Tribute to Hermann Buhl as acclimatization for the peak of all mountains

 

Here we are offering something really special: a guided expedition to Broad Peak, so that we can tackle the legendary K2, optimally acclimatized, on an already equipped route with prepared high camps, with the help of oxygen and Nepalese Sherpas. And if that feels like too much, just leave it at the Broad Peak.

The Furtenbach Adventures K2 and Broad Peak expeditions is truly a unique opportunity. A treat for connoisseurs and experts alike. From a purely statistical point of view, the Broad Peak is one of the objectively safest eight-thousanders which also has a very high success rate. The route is direct, relatively short and the few difficult passages are secured with fixed ropes. Because of this, and because of its lower altitude, the Broad Peak is the first eight-thousander for many high-altitude mountaineers. The Karakoram is often described as climatically harsher and colder than the Himalayan mountains. This, however, arises from a rather subjective sensation as opposed to scientifically validated values. First you hike for one week via the Baltoro glacier over boulders, ice and moraines to the mountain. Not through forests and meadows as is often the case in the Himalayas. It’s all barren and thus acts inhospitable. But in reality it is not colder. There are even days when you can sit on the Broad Peak summit in ski touring pants and a light windbreaker.

Following the Broad Peak, some will return home and others will undertake a short hike to the almost visible K2 base camp. Work is already underway on the mountain and while the group recovers and waits for suitable weather, the high camp and the route are being prepared. Thanks to our acclimatization on the adjacent Broad Peak, we have spared ourselves multiple ascents and descents on the objectively more dangerous and technically more challenging K2. As soon as the weather is good, we will embark on a direct summit attempt via the beautiful normal route on the south east ridge (Abbruzzi spur). Sherpas and porters will accompany us and each participant will have oxygen available. If we succeed, it amounts to the crowning glory of every mountaineer’s life!

As far as the Pakistani government continues to permit it, we will fly in our experienced Sherpas from Nepal to support our Pakistani high altitude porters and secure the route.
This is an additional safety factor.

Adventure Factor brave
Experience / Emotion lifechanging
Fitness / Struggle challenging
Risk the height and the bottleneck
Comfort expedition style

Highlights:

  • THE peak of all mountains
  • Acclimatization on Broad Peak
  • Personal Sherpa and O2 for summit day on K2
  • UIAGM guide
  • High camp equipment

 

Mountain Guide: to be announced

Some reports and pictures on our K2 and Broad Peak expedition 2017 can be found in our blog.

 

Trip dates:

Booking code:-
Minimum members:-
Price per person: 0

Due to the complex logistics of this expedition, there may be changes to the planned procedure during the trip. The exact procedure depends on the weather, snow conditions, the progress of insurance work on the route and the timetable of other groups in order to avoid potential traffic jams as far as possible. For a successful ascent, in addition to the basic conditions created by us such as oxygen supply, sherpasupport, base camp, route, high camp etc., a large portion of luck, good weather, condition, ability and mental strength of the participants are required.

The expedition can be extended, if the conditions require it and the participants wish this and bear the additional costs incurred. We move in a very remote, politically highly sensitive area where official or environmental restrictions of our freedom of movement must be reckoned with at any time.

The following schedule is planned:

Day 1 - 12: Arrival, Skardu and spectacular hike to Broad Peak Base Camp

Day 1: Arrival in Islamabad and meet-up at the Hotel Envoy Continental in Islamabad
Free day for the participants while the expedition leader takes care of the last administrative formalities the authorities.

Days 2-3: Depending on circumstances, either a two days bus ride to Skardu with an overnight stay at Chilas, or a flight to Skardu await us. The bus ride has its own charm and takes us through the varied landscape of Pakistan into the Indus valley, where we embark on the legendary Karakoram Highway. On the second day shortly after Chilas, weather permitting, we can see the Nanga Parbat with the Rhakiot flank mastered by Hermann Buhl. The ride on the second day is slightly shorter. Overnight stay at hotel in Skardu.

Day 4: We spend the day in the small but lively town of Skardu at 2300m. The carriers are organized, the luggage loaded, and you can run some last errands or go on a hike.

Day 5: Day trip by jeep through wild, stunning scenery and canyons to Askole at 3050m. For those who have never been here before, this will probably be the most exciting and thrilling ride of their lives! Overnight stay in tents in the small village of Askole.

Days 6–12: An impressive walk through what we consider the most spectacular mountain valley in the world. We spend each night in a tent. On the first day it is relatively flat with a very dry and barren landscape on the way to Jhula at 3100m. On the second day we reach the last small settlement of Paiju at an altitude of about 3500m. If required, we will lay in a day of rest there, which the carriers need in order to prepare for the Baltoro glacier. On the fourth day we will already be on the legendary Baltoro glacier. We reach our camp at Urdukas next to the glacier at about 4150m. And just across from the Trango towers! An incredibly impressive view!
On the fifth day we pass the beautiful Muztagh Tower on the way to our next camp Goro II at around 4200m. Because of the spectacular views, the walks are very entertaining here. You have to force yourself to keep your eyes on the ground. On the sixth day we reach the famous Concordia confluence at about 4600m where so many scientists, explorers and mountaineering legends have set up camp over the years. All have left their unmistakable traces. We see here two of the most beautiful mountains on this planet, Masherbrum and Gasherbrum IV.
Also Broad Peak, K2 and Hermann Buhl’s fateful mountain – the Chogolisa. All are prominent in this stunning 360 degree panorama. On the last day we reach our base camp on Broad Peak at a pleasant altitude of 4900m on a lateral moraine of the Godwin-Austen Glacier.

Day 13 - 33: Ascent of Broad Peak

Days 13-33: We will take at least three weeks for the ascent Broad Peak, however we want to stay flexible due to weather and snow conditions as well as the participants‘ needs and requirements. We will set up 2-3 high camps. The first, which we could skip later on, will be situated on a small plateau following the first firn flank at 5700m which will be secured with fixed ropes. The next camp will be at ca. 6300m and the last one at 7100m.
The summit tour first takes us to the 7800m high saddle between the northern peak and the pre-summit, then via the wide ridge with a few easy climbs (second level of difficulty – here we will use a fixed rope) to the pre-summit. From here we easily (walking terrain) continue over a wide, gently sloping ridge that is by far not as long as often described, towards the main summit. This ridge is often blown off, facilitating easy advancement. If conditions are good, and participants are in a healthy and normal state, we can accomplish this in about half an hour there and 20 minutes back.

Day 34: Ascent to K2 base camp

Day 34: The K2 aspirants undertake a comfortable 3 hour hike over the Godwin Austen glacier to our K2 base camp at 5100m. The others make their way back to Skardu via the shorter route over the Gondogoro pass or stop at a smaller base camp with reduced service (without a guide?) for another summit attempt, in case the first one was not successful. The way back to Islamabad is organized for two groups (K2 and Broad Peak only), an individually planned return is available at extra cost. The way back to Skardu usually takes around 4 days. Arrival to Islamabad would then be on the 39th day, the flight home on the 40th day, unless you decide to undertake a second summit attempt. We want all participants to have as many opportunities as possible for their summit success. For more flexibility, we recommend to book a flexible flight fare for your flight back to Europe.

Day 35 - 55: Ascent of the summit of K2

Days 35-55: Once again three weeks. First, we rest and recharge our batteries, organize material and then wait for suitable weather for a direct ascent attempt via the Abbruzzi spur with 4 high camps. We will reach camp 1 at 6000m with relatively low difficult via a 40 degree steep Firn flank. From there it continues through snow gullies and mixed terrain to the first key point, the approximately 25m high House Chimney which will be secured with fixed ropes. Shortly thereafter we reach camp 2 at 6600m. The way to camp 3 is strongly dependent on the conditions. It’s a mix of snow slopes, rocky passages and mixed terrain with individual steep stretches until our south spur coincides with the east ridge (Black Pyramid). From here we follow the easier eastern ridge to camp 3 at 7350m. The route from Camp 3 to Camp 4 at about 7900m on the shoulder is a technically easy snow ridge.
In Camp 4, we see two things very prominently: the intoxicating panorama on one side and the dangerous serac with the infamous “Bottleneck” on the other side. This is the most dangerous part of the route. The bottleneck will be the key passage for the summit day and as such it will be secured accordingly with fixed ropes. At the latest from here on in, we will use oxygen which can help us master this dangerous passage faster and safer in both the ascent and the descent. Approximately 100m after the bottleneck the terrain becomes a bit more subdued, and a few more meters of a simple snow slope lead us to the summit.
Weather permitting, we may have time for a second summit attempt. Again, we recommend to book a flexible return flight, so that we can extend the expedition for a few days if necessary or travel home earlier if we successfully complete the expedition ahead of schedule.

Day 56 - 63: Disassembly, return to Islamabad, flight home

Days 56–60: Dismantling the base camp and return to Skardu via the Gondogoro pass. Overnight stay in tents and in the hotel in Skardu.

Days 61-62: Return journey to Islamabad. If possible by flight, otherwise again the two-day bus ride. We will be so exhausted that we will simply sleep through the ride. Overnight stay at a hotel in Islamabad

Day 63: Islamabad or return flight

check_circle_outline  What the price includes:

  • All organisation for the double expedition
  • State certified (UIAGM) German / English speaking mountain guide during the whole expedition
  • 2 nights in an upscale hotel in a very safe quarter of Islamabad in a double room (surcharge for a single room)
  • All transfers including transport to/from Skardu by plane or private shuttle (depending on weather) and to/from Askole in all-terrain vehicles
  • Full board for the duration of the whole trip (half board in Islamabad)
  • Drinks during joint meals (alcoholic beverages excluded)
  • Double rooms on stop-overs during our trip to the mountain
  • Porters to the base camp and back (40kg per baggage piece per member)
  • 1 tent per participant at the base camp
  • 1 tent per two participants during the approach and for the high camp
  • A mat for the approach and the base camp
  • High camp equipment (tents, cooker, gas, dishes, food)
  • All the fixing material for the route
  • Use of the fixed ropes along the route
  • Transport of waste back from the base camp
  • High altitude porters and climbing Sherpa (1:2 Sherpa client ratio on Broad Peak, 1:1 Sherpa client ratio on K2) 
  • Oxygen package with a rental mask & regulator and 2 bottles per members for K2
  • Insurance and equipment for all staff
  • Emergency oxygen
  • Pharmaceutical travel kit, high altitude emergency medicine, pulsoxymeter
  • Kitchen crew
  • A comfortable, heated common tent, shower tent, power generator 2 hours per day etc. at the base camp
  • Satellite communication (WIFI, laptop, solar battery charger)
  • Radio transmitter for each member
  • All fees & permits
  • Government deposit for helicopter rescue (actual costs must be paid by members or their insurance / Global Rescue membership)
  • Environmental fee
  • weather reports
  • Security and warranty of an Austrian tour operator

 

help_outline Optional:

  • Extension week and individual journey back to Islamabad: € 1.400
  • High Altitude Porter (costs can be splitted by 2 members), only
  • Broad Peak: € 5.000, K2 & Broad Peak: € 6.500
  • Oxygen Pack for Broad Peak (2 bottles and rent mask & regulator): € 4.000

 

 

highlight_off  What the price does not include:

  • International flight to Islamabad (we’ll gladly make you an offer – at the moment a flight from Europe is approx. € 750)
  • Excess baggage on the flight to/from Skardu in case a flight is possible
  • Personal insurance
  • Visa for Pakistan (must be obtained by members at the Pakistani Embassy in their home country in time)
  • Personal medication
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Summit bonus for personal summit sherpas
  • Tips
  • Personal mountain and climbing equipment
  • Sleeping bags for the base camp and high camp
  • Fees for satellite phones, emails

 

For the K2 you have to be a very experienced mountaineer with eight thousand meter experience. The Abbruzzensporn on the K2 is the most difficult normal route on an eight-thousander. We recommend oxygen for the summit day at the latest (this is included in the price). This means that the statistically most accident prone passage under the Hängeserac after the shoulder and the bottleneck can be walked much faster and safer both in the ascent and in the descent. The fixed ropes in the summit area are only laid in the course of the summit ascent. If you want to ascend without oxygen, you can do so if you have the necessary experience and skills.

 

Of course each mountain can also be booked individually. The return journey can either take place with the double expedition, which means that you have enough time for another summit attempt, or within the scope of the change of the two groups to the respective other mountain. An individual return trip can also be organised at any time for an additional charge (see Options).

 

info  General

Tour operator for this trip: Furtenbach Adventures.

An expedition to high altitudes still presents an enormous challenge despite modern equipment and tactics. Besides technical and fitness requirements, the high altitude still poses the largest hurdle. That is why we place great emphasis on prudent, slow acclimatization, and recommend our eight thousander expedition participants the possibility of pre-acclimatization in a high altitude tent at home (see also FAQ).

Weather and conditions on the mountain can lead to program or route changes. Participation in the expedition lies in your own individual responsibility. Furtenbach Adventures assumes no liability for accidents, damages or loss of materials.

If you are not sure whether taking part in an expedition is the right thing for you, feel free to contact Lukas Furtenbach at Tel +43 512 204134 or per email lukas@furtenbachadventures.com for an answer to this question during a personal interview!

This package in general is not suitable for persons with reduced mobility.

 

language   Entry Requirements

Passport and Visa Regulations

Swiss or EU citizens

Pakistan: When entering the country, you need a passport with a validity of at least 6 more months and a visa that has to be obtained in time  by members in their home country at the Pakistani embassy

Information on recommended vaccines and health regulations:
http://www.who.int/ith/en/

More detailed information regarding entry, visa and health requirements for this travel destination will be provided once you’ve communicated your nationality.

 

https   Insurance possibilities

We strongly recommend taking out a travel insurance (including trip cancellation, interruption, medical and luggage insurance) For this journey, the Global Rescue Signature Travel Insurance is suitable. The price of the insurance depends on the trip and the personal data of the traveller. We happily make you an offer after booking or upon request.

To cover search and rescue costs in the mountains, we ask our expedition participants to take out a “medical only”-membership at Global Rescue. This membership can be concluded here before departure: https://ss.globalrescue.com/partner/furtenbach/. Further information are provided after your booking.

 

work  Equipment

Unless specified otherwise in the detailed program, all high camp equipment will be provided by us. You need to bring your own personal equipment such as down clothing, expedition shoes, an isolated sleeping mat and a sleeping bag with a comfort range of – 20 to -25 degrees Celsius for the high camp. Following your booking we will send you a detailed equipment list. We will be happy to advise you personally during the selection and purchase of required equipment. With years of expedition experience, we know what has proved its worth and what not.

insert_chart_outlined   Difficulty / Technique

The ascent always lies in the participants personal responsibility, while led by the mountain guide and expedition leader. Participants must be able to move safely and independently in mixed terrain (rock, snow, ice) and – if required – independently build rope teams under the guidance of the mountain guide. Cooperation, camaraderie and support on the mountain increases the chances of success for all. The guide is there to provide guidance for the whole group, the possibilities for him to respond to individual needs is limited. It is imperative that participants adhere to the instructions and decisions made by the mountain guide. Regardless, each participant must know their own physical limits, and be able to make a timely decision to turn back.

For expeditions offered by us, unless otherwise specified in the detailed program, the following is required of participants: independent getting on and off the fixed ropes on cliffs, snow, ice and firn snow slopes, as well as the independent use of crampons and ice axes in mixed terrain. On climbing passages, as well as very dangerous and exposed places, fixed ropes are attached by mountain guides and by the Sherpa team.

 

perm_identity   Physical fitness

A key success factor in expeditions is being in good shape. Train in the months before the expedition! Several hour climbs with a backpack and around 1000 meters per day should not be a problem for you. You have to carry your own personal equipment on the mountain, unless an optional personal Sherpa is booked. The porters are available for the group and set up the high camp and insure the route. We will gladly provide individual advice on how to best prepare yourself mentally and physically for an expedition!

 

local_hospital  Health

We recommend that each participant undergoes a medical examination prior to the expedition. Good health is a prerequisite for participation. Particularly important is a visit to the dentist because previously unnoticed dental problems can become quite acute due to the sudden change in pressure conditions in higher altitudes.

 

landscape  Experience

We are very familiar with the charm and attraction of an eight-thousander! However, we want to make certain that you can ascend safely, come back alive, and be able to enjoy the expedition while on it and not afterwards. Therefore, in order to participate in our eight-thousander expeditions, you must already have collected some experience at high altitudes and mountaineering. When booking, please let us know which heights you have already reached and which high mountains you have climbed. If you are a newcomer, no problem, we offer a bespoke program aimed to train you for reaching your desired destination.

In order to participate in our seven-and six-thousander expeditions, you should have at least some experience on the four-thousander peaks of the Alps or other mountain ranges. Our offer for newcomers applies here as well, we can train you to become prudent and safe high altitude climbers!

We offer a special introductory weekend for all those who want to learn about – or refresh their knowledge of – all the skills and techniques needed on an expedition. More info here.

 

payment  Payment

Deposit Payment is made less than eleven months prior to the end of the trip and is a maximum of 20% of the price. The balance must be paid no earlier than 20 days prior to departure. Please find more information regarding the payment in our GTC.

 

directions_run  Right of withdrawal

The traveller has the right to withdraw from the travel contract at any time by paying the according cancellation fee stated in the General Terms of Conditions of Furtenbach Adventures GmbH (https://www.furtenbachadventures.com/en/service/gtc/, item II. 7.).

For expeditions to 7000 and 8000 meter peaks the following fees apply for cancellations on the part of the client prior to travel: until 3 months prior to departure 50%, within 3 months prior departure 100%.

The tour operator will be released from the contract if the specified minimum number of participants is not achieved and if the customer has been notified about the cancellation in writing within the following periods: until 20 days prior to departure.