On Tuesday, July 22nd, we plan to begin our summit push by first moving up from our base camp to our advanced base camp. From there we plan to move up one camp per day, putting us in Camp 4, our high camp, on the afternoon of July 26th. With weather and route conditions allowing, we will leave that night for the summit of K2 and hope to reach the top on the morning of July 27th. If successful, we plan to descend that afternoon to one of our lower camps such as Camp 3 or Camp 2. Then we will descend all the way to base camp the following day. If we need to spend an extra night or two up high on the mountain, we have ample reserves in place to extend our stay without having to be concerned.
There are at least 50 other climbers in camp planning to make a summit attempt this week with the good weather, some may go for the summit as early as July 24th. Currently the route is fixed to Camp 3, so we still have some work to do fixing the lines up to Camp 4, and then beyond Camp 4 through the “bottleneck” and the traverse above the bottleneck. There likely will be substantial work in breaking trail through the deep snow above Camp 3 and Camp 4. Hopefully with the sunny weather forecasted the next few days with temperatures warming during the day and cooling at night, there will be some consolidation in the snow-pack, making for easier trail breaking up high.
The weather forecast is very promising this week, with little to no precipitation and light to moderate winds up high. We will post our progress regularly to this Madison Mountaineering K2 dispatch page.