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The always awe-inspiring view from K2 base camp

Our K2/Broad Peak team is still waiting out the weather at K2 base camp.  Here’s Garrett with the latest status update:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition team.  Today’s July 22nd and we’ve had another easy, restful day here in base camp.

The stormy weather seems to be passing at the moment, but still windy up high.  We’re all doing well here in base camp, had a few showers today, and just going over our gear and our food, and our plan for our summit push which we hope to start sometime in the next week, but not sure when.  It all depends on the weather forecast.

So all’s well here in K2 and we’ll check in soon.

If climbing K2 or Broad Peak is in your future, please contact our office, we would love to have you climb with us!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

BBQ in K2 Base Camp!

With some great weather during their rest period, the team enjoyed some BBQ in K2 base camp.  Here is expedition leader Garrett Madison with today’s expedition dispatch:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition team.  Today is July 18th and we’ve add a restful few days in base camp with some great weather the last few days.

Our sherpa team has finished carrying all of the equipment, oxygen, ropes, tents up to Camp 4 and fixing lines to Camp 4 on K2 and they’re all back in base camp now.  So, we’re resting here in base camp and there is a storm perdicted to develop starting tomorrow.  Big snowfall starting tomorrow over the next few days and then some very high winds up to 100km per hour near the summit.

So, our plan is to hunker down here in base camp for a few days, let the storm pass, and then, hopefully, we’ll have some good weather the last week of July starting the 24th or 25th and we can plan for our summit attempt.

We’ve been following the teams making their summit attempts on Broad Peak today and fingers crossed for them.  Wishing them the best of luck and a safe descent.  We’ll wait to see how that all plays out for them.  But all’s good here in K2 base camp and we look forward to checking in soon.

Today's view of K2 from base camp

Today’s view of K2 from base camp

BBQ in K2 Base Camp!

BBQ in K2 Base Camp!

If climbing K2 or Broad Peak is in your future, please contact our office, we would love to have you climb with us!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Broad peak from the Gilkey memorial

The K2 team is enjoying some good weather for resting in base camp and looking forward to making their summit attempt plans after the next storm system passes through.  Here’s expedition leader Garrett Madison with all the details:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition team.  We are here in K2 Base Camp and weather is great.  It’s beautiful day and we’re just resting up.

Our sherpas are up on K2 on the Abruzzi Route finishing some load carries to Camp 3 and Camp 4 and some rope fixing as well and getting Camp 4 all stocked up with our equipment for our summit push which we hope do some time in late July.

It looks like after the next couple of days of good weather there will be some snow, a lot of snow actually, and some high winds for a few days.  So we are gonna let that storm system pass through and then hopefully by around July 24th we’ll have another patch of good weather enough to make a plan for a summit attempt.

So everyone’s doing well here, we’re just resting up, admiring the views.  We’re watching a few climbers make their summit push on Broad Peak right now.  They’re going up to Camp 3 and probably going for the summit tomorrow.  So it will be fun to watch their progress.

But, all’s well here in Pakistan on the Baltoro Glacier and we’ll check in soon.  Thanks!

Looking down the glacier towards Chogolisa from the Gilkey memorial

Looking down the glacier towards Chogolisa from the Gilkey memorial

If climbing K2 or Broad Peak is in your future, please contact our office, we would love to have you climb with us!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Garrett video interview by Alan Arnette from Broad Peak base camp

Great video interview of Garrett Madison by the nexus of all high-altitude climbing news, Alan Arnette.

Garrett Madison, founder of Madison Mountaineering is one of the few people on the planet to have summited K2 twice. He’s hoping to get his third this 2021 summer. This is his sixth expedition to K2 making him the most experienced western operator to run regular trips to the Northern Terrorities of Pakistan.

With the new 4G Cell tower in Concordia, Garret took the hour walk from K2 Base Camp to Broad Peak Base Camp to talk with me over Zoom about his expedition. We discussed their rotations to Camp 1 and 2, the snow conditions on the mountain, what happens when he finds bodies on the mountain, and more. I think you’ll enjoy getting this first-hand information directly from Northern Pakistan.

Watch the video interview here:  https://www.alanarnette.com/blog/2021/07/14/k2-2021-summer-coverage-video-interview-with-garrett-madison-from-the-karakorum/

Abruzzi Ridge on K2

The K2 team has completed the first acclimatization rotation up the mountain to Camp 2 and Garrett Madison, expedition leader, provides all the details in today’s expedition dispatch from K2 base camp:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition.  Today is July 13 and yesterday we got down from our first rotation on the Abruzzi Ridge of K2.  We spent five nights in total above base camp: one night in Advanced Base Camp (ABC), two nights in Camp 1, and two nights in Camp 2 at about 22,200 ft.

We’re back in base camp and it’s stormin’!  It’s snowing, windy, and we’re hunkering down to stay warm.  Hopefully good weather’s on the way; we could use some sun and some warmth.  But everyone’s doing well here, we’re staying entertained with books, movies, board games, and just resting up and enjoying some GREAT food.  So, we’re very comfortable here and looking forward to some good weather in the days ahead.

We’ll check in soon, thanks!

Abruzzi Ridge on K2

Garrett Madison says “hello” from the Abruzzi Ridge on K2

The view from K2's Abruzzi Ridge

The view from K2’s Abruzzi Ridge

If climbing K2 or Broad Peak is in your future, please contact our office, we would love to have you climb with us!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Climbing up K2 Abruzzi ridge!

Satellite comms are up again and Garrett and team check-in for K2’s Camp 2 on the Abruzzi Ridge with today’s dispatch:

Hello!  This is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition team.  Today is July 10th, and today we climbed from Camp 1 up to Camp 2 on the Abruzzi Ridge – about 22,000 ft. or almost 6700m.

We had great weather – beautiful sunny day today, awesome views all around.  The team is doing great, and we’re really enjoying this first rotation to acclimatize, getting familiar with the climbing route, and spend a couple of nights up here at Camp 2, and then we’ll be heading down to rest in base camp.

The sherpa team is doing great – they pushed up to Camp 3 and above yesterday.  So they’ve made great progress on the route, and they’re gonna head down tomorrow and take a little rest.  Looks like we’re going to take some high winds coming in a few day’s time, so it will be good to go down to base camp and rest for a bit and then revisit the upper mountain.

So all’s well here on K2, we’re enjoying ourselves, and having a great time here in Pakistan.

Climbing up K2 Abruzzi with the Black Pyramid above

Climbing up K2 Abruzzi with the Black Pyramid above

If climbing K2 or Broad Peak is in your future, please contact our office, we would love to have you climb with us!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

K2 2016 Climbing Season Recap:

Our K2 2016 team made a great effort to climb the peak but it was not meant to be. We are thankful that nobody was injured in the avalanche that came down from high on the mountain on July 23rd and took our Camp 3 and Camp 4 deposit off the mountain.  This avalanche resulted in the cancellation of the climbing season for all teams on K2 in 2016.  We have enjoyed our time in Pakistan and feel very lucky to have experienced this incredible mountain range, the Karakorum.  Please read the National Geographic article here for more information on the recent K2 climbing season.

To Higher Places!

Garrett Madison

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Amazing Youtube video by Petr Jan Juracka with beautiful drone shots of our 2016 K2 ascent.

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Below please also enjoy 2016 K2 climber Takayasu Semba’s photo’s from the expedition.

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Our team is now back down in base camp after our K2 summit attempt. Tomorrow was supposed to be our summit day, the weather currently looks perfect as predicted, clear skies and no wind. We had everything in position for our summit attempt, after about 5 weeks of preparations, we had established our high camps, had climbed to camp 3, and were looking forward to our summit. But it was not meant to be, as when we were preparing to climb from camp 1 to camp 2 on the morning of July 23, we saw a big avalanche come down the mountain. We later learned that this avalanche was massive, had started somewhere near our camp 4, and had covered nearly a third of the mountain down to the base,  taking out our camps 3 & 4, nothing was left. We were lucky that we were not in these camps when the avalanche occurred. Without our equipment for our summit attempt (tents, oxygen, ropes, food, etc) we cannot continue our climb, we are now heading home, as are all teams. Yesterday we searched the avalanche debris field at the base of the mountain, about 7000′ below where the slide began,  but found nothing,  as the debris was around 10-20 ft. deep in most areas. We will leave base camp in a couple of days and trek out,  then fly or drive to Islamabad and fly home. Even though we did not make the summit we had a great experience and and are thankful for the time we had in this beautiful mountain range. -Garrett Madison

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Massive avalanche on K2, camps 3 and 4 totally gone without a trace: All members currently safe in camp 2. Expedition now finished as all equipment for summit attempt (tents, oxygen, ropes, food, etc) has been lost.

-Garrett Madison

Expedition leader Garrett Madison called in this morning to report that the team has safely reached Camp 1 and are now pinned down with harsh weather conditions. The team will wait and see if the weather stabilizes before moving higher on K2.

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This is a wind graph that we use to make data driven decisions on K2. Michael Fagin and team at West Coast Weather provide our expeditions around the world with advanced forecasting models. Michael Fagin has a background in weather forecasting for major expedition groups that climb K2 and other climbing venues. He is experienced in climate data retrieval and analysis for clients around the world.

K2 Wind Graph

*Forecast issued on July 22, 2016 and weather needs to be monitored as the weather patterns can and do change over time.

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Our climbers and guides climbing to Camp 1.

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