Tag Archive for: Skardu

Garrett and Nelly reviewing climbing techniques nearby K2 base camp

Both the climbers and sherpas are making great progress through their first rotation on K2! The climbers will head up to Camp 2 (6700m/21,980ft) tomorrow, while the sherpas have fixed ropes all the way up to Camp 3 (7250m/23,800ft). Here’s expedition lead, Garrett Madison, with today’s expedition dispatch from K2:

Hello! This is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 expedition team.

Today is July 3rd and all is well here on K2! Yesterday, our sherpa team made great progress and was able fix nearly all the way up to Camp 3 (7250m/23,800ft) – up the Black Pyramid and beyond. The route’s in good condition up to that point. Our climbers went up to Camp 1 (6065m/19,900ft) yesterday and are acclimatizing now, their second night, planning to head up to Camp 2 (6700m/21,980ft) tomorrow.

Yesterday I came down from our first rotation with two members of our climbing team who have decided to head home. They flew out today by helicopter to Skardu (2220m/7,283ft) and will make their way to Islamabad tomorrow.

But everyone’s doing well here on K2, we’ve had great weather and are really happy about the rope fixing progress that our sherpa team made – looking forward to more climbing here in the future.


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 our daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my flash briefing.

Instagram:

The team at base camp!

The team has said “goodbye” to the trekkers and looks forward to the days ahead leading up to their first rotation.

Hello! This is Garrett checking in for the K2 expedition team.

We are at K2 base camp (4968m/16,300ft) – it’s another beautiful day here and today we saw the last of our trekkers off. They were headed down valley with Fred Alldredge to trek down the Baltoro Glacier back to Jhola Camp (3151m/10,338ft), and then by Jeep to Skardu (2220m/7283ft). It’ll be a few days before they reach Skardu. Our other trekkers helicoptered out yesterday and made it all the way back to Islamabad just in a few hours time – amazing logistics that worked out!

The rest of us are here settling into base camp. We’re happy to be here, we’re going to do some training today and an acclimatization hike tomorrow. Everyone’s doing well and the weather’s just perfect at the moment – sunny and not a cloud in the sky! Our Sherpa team just reached Camp 2 (6700m/21,980ft) – first team of the season to make it up to Camp 2. They set up 5 tents for us and we’re looking forward to doing a first rotation here in a few days time.

All is well here at K2 base camp! We’ll check in soon.

Enjoying the evening light at camp

Enjoying the evening light at camp

Piers cutting the ham for an afternoon snack

Piers cutting the ham for an afternoon snack

Training on the ice today near base camp with K2 behind

Training on the ice today near base camp with K2 behind

Nelly enjoying the nice weather here in the Madison Mountaineering base camp

Nelly enjoying the nice weather here in the Madison Mountaineering base camp


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 our daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my flash briefing.

Instagram:

Photo from Madison Mountaineering Photo Archive

The team has reached K2 base camp and will spend the next few days dialing things in, encouraged by more good weather ahead!

Hello! This is Garrett calling in for the K2 climbing team.

We reached K2 base camp today and it was a beautiful day. We had views of K2, Broad Peak, and other surrounding mountains. We got to base camp and we’ve been setting up our camp ever since. We’ve got things mostly set up for the time being, but it will take us a couple of days to get everything totally dialed in the way we want it. Everyone’s doing well. We had a mini Puja with some our Sherpa’s – they’re going to head up to Camp 1 tomorrow and we’re going to take a rest day here. Some of our trekkers are going to try and helicopter out tomorrow morning and the rest of the trekkers will take a rest day here, and then head down the following day to start their trek back to Skardu.

So, everyone’s doing well, excited to be up here, and looking forward to more good weather ahead.

Basecamp tent illuminated at dusk

Base camp tent illuminated at dusk

Garrett and porter/Sherpa team happy to be in basecamp!

Everyone’s happy to be in base camp!


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 our daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my flash briefing.

Instagram:

Big boulder blocking the Karakoram Highway!

Our 2022 K2 expedition has started!!  The team arrived in Islamabad on June 18th and drove by motor coach to the staging city of Skardu enjoying a small adventure along the way.  Here’s expedition leader, Garrett Madison, with the expedition’s initial dispatch:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 2022 expedition team.  Today is June 19th and we arrived in Skardu today after a drive from Islamabad.  The weather’s been bad the last few days, so all the flights from Islamabad to Skardu have been canceled.  So, we took buses and drove yesterday on the Karakoram Highway and reached Skardu around midnight.

There was a big boulder that came down over the road at one point and we actually had to walk across by foot and have new vehicles met us on the other side to transport us to Skardu.  It was an adventure to say the least!  A fun way to start the trip.

We’re just waiting on clearance here in Skardu, then we’ll head off tomorrow, hopefully by jeep, drive all the way to Jhola Camp (3151m/10,338ft), spend the night, and then start trekking the next day towards K2 base camp.

Everyone’s doing well, we’re excited to be here and looking forward to the journey ahead.

K2 team traveled by bus from Islamabad to Skardu

K2 team traveled by bus from Islamabad to Skardu

Climber Nelly and Ang Purba enjoy reaching Diamer, Pakastan

Climber Nelly and Ang Purba enjoy reaching Diamer, Pakistan


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 our daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my flash briefing.

Instagram:

Heading off to begin the final rotation

Our 2021 K2 expedition is now concluded with just Garrett and our crew preparing to fly home.  Expedition leader, Garrett Madison, calls in from Skardu, Pakistan with this final expedition dispatch:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 expedition which now has concluded!

We’re back in Skardu and all of our members from the UK, the USA, and Ukraine have flown out and are back home now. Just myself and the Nepal Sherpa team and the Pakastani team are here in Skardu. We arrived last night from the trek out from base camp to Skardu. It took us four days.

Today we did some gear organizing, and some sight-seeing around Skardu. We are hoping tomorrow that we have good weather to fly to Islamabad. All’s well here in Skardu. Nice weather and we are looking forward to getting back to Islamabad and on our way home.

It’s been a wonderful expedition here. We had 100% summit success with 21 summits of K2 on our team in total and everyone made it down safely and is on their way home healthy, which is the most important.

So, we had a wonderful expedition. Thanks for following along. Looking forward to our next expeditions out there on the horizon.

Starry skies above K2

Starry skies above K2

The day we set off from base camp for the K2 summit push. Serious faces..

The day we set off from base camp for the K2 summit push. Serious faces..

A very happy 3-time K2 summiteer at base camp

A very happy 3-time K2 summiteer at base camp

After getting down from the successful K2 summit rotation, happy face!

After getting down from the successful K2 summit rotation, happy face!

Garrett with Sherpa and Pakistani crew departing K2 base camp

Garrett with Sherpa and Pakistani crew departing K2 base camp

Cutting the celebratory K2 cake in Skardu

Cutting the celebratory K2 cake in Skardu

Post K2 celebration in Skardu

Post-K2 celebration in Skardu

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:

The first day of trekking is done and the team is now at Paiju camp along the Braldu River on their way to K2 base camp.  Expedition leader Garrett Madison checks in via satellite phone from their shady camp:

Hello!  This is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering K2 and Broad Peak expedition.

Today is Tuesday, June 29th and we had a great day trekking from Jhola camp to Paiju camp today along the Braldu River.  We had lunch, made it to camp, relaxed in the shade, and then had a nice dinner, watched the sun go down with the light changing on all the surrounding peaks.  Now we are just getting settled in for bed.

Everyone’s doing well and we’re excited to be on our way to K2 base camp.  We’ll probably arrive there in four or five days.  We are enjoying the trek, the scenery, and the good company with all of our Pakistani and sherpa friends.

We’ll check in soon.  Thanks!

(photo:  Madison Mountaineering archives)

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:

The K2 trekking is complete.  The team had a marathon day by finishing the trek and then 4-wheeling for seven hours (!) to Skardu.  Here’s expedition leader Garrett Madison’s update:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the K2 expedition team.  Today is July 26th and we finished our trek out from K2 base camp to Askole and then we rode by jeep for seven hours from Askole to Skardu.  We are very happy to be in Skardu and to have a nice lodge with a hot shower.  And everyone’s doing great.  We’re gonna take a rest day tomorrow and then fingers crossed for good weather, hopefully fly to Islamabad the following day.

(photo:  Madison Mountaineering K2 archives)

Loading up the jeeps in Skardu now for the ride to Askole

As the team prepares for some four-wheelin’ to Askole, expedition leader Garrett Madison provides this update:

Hello this is Garrett calling in for the K2 expedition team.  Today we are heading by jeep from Skardu to Askole.  It’s about a six hour jeep ride.  Beautiful day here, Sun’s out.  Looking forward to a very scenic and exciting ride.  Everybody’s doing well.  We are excited to get the expedition underway and start trekking to base camp.

Our lead rope fixing Sherpa Siddhi Badahur who was also the first rope fixing Sherpa to summit Everest with us this past season

 

Loading up the Land Cruisers in Skardu

 

Gear is loaded and ready to head to Askole

 

Our fleet of vintage Land Cruisers to ride to Askole

Urdukas

Hello!  This is Garrett Madison calling for the K2 expedition team.  Today is June 26th and we continued our trek toward K2 base camp.  We had a nice trek today from Paiju to Urdukas. Mixed weather today; some clouds, a bit of rain, some sun and some wind, but we had nice day overall. Had some great views of the Trango Towers on our way up to camp. Everyone is doing great and looking forward to hiking up to Goro II camp tomorrow on the Baltoro Glacier. So, one day closer to K2 base camp! Everyone is doing well and we are happy to be here. We will check in soon.  Thanks!

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Audio dispatch from Garrett Madison

Jola

Today is Monday, June 25th and yesterday we started the trek from Askole into our first camp at Jola. Today we are heading up to our next camp which is Paiju at over 10,000 feet. The group is doing very well and excited to be underway, moving up toward the Baltoro Glacier and K2 base camp. The weather has been pretty good, cool and not too hot. The team is looking forward to settling in at Paiju this afternoon. Tomorrow we will pass the Great Trango Towers! All good here and we will check in soon.

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Audio dispatch from Garrett Madison

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To learn more about the Central Karakoram National Park, which is the highest national park in the world and the largest protected area in Pakistan please visit: http://www.cknp.org