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Shingu Charpa. East face
Shingu Charpa (known as The Great Tower) is a 5600m Karakorum spire located in Masherbrum massif in Nangma valley. As against its neighbor mountain Amin Brakk climbed in 2006 by Russian team led by Valery Rozov, who made a B.A.S.E.-jump right from the summit, Shingu Charpa is little-developed. By way the object of ascent chosen by the team is a virgin abrupt, practically vertical 1500-meter East face of Shingu Charpa leading directly up to the summit.
Shingu Charpa's climbing h istory:
In 2000 a Korean team ( Shin Dong-Chul, Bang Jung-Ho and Hwang Young-Soon) made the first ascent of Shingu Charpa. Initially they planned to fix the rope via the North ridge, but soon, having realized scale of the problem they reoriented and fixed 700m of rope in a dangerous approach couloir more to the right to an altitude of 4,800m, then committed themselves to the West Face, a steep granite wall that took seven days to ascend and descend. Climbing through generally very poor weather, the three Koreans reached the summit on the 23rd July after overcoming difficulties rated at 5.11 and A2. Frequent rain and snowstorms made the route particularly dangerous with a threat of stonefall, especially in the lower section where the wall was less than vertical. B ut the "prime - line" remained unclimbed.
A group of experienced Soviet mountaineers together with the American, Carlos Buhler, planned to attempt the huge North West Ridge of Shingu Charpa. In the end they didn't but Buhler and Durashin went on to travel in the Hindu Raj as reported elsewhere.
In 2001 an American quartet (Nils Davis, Todd Offenbacher, Brenton Warren and Brian McCray) climbed more than 20 pitches in capsule style for five days before retreating because of a trauma of one of the participants but they became 2001 Mugs Stump Award Winners for this attempt.
In 2004, a Canadian team pushed the line another couple of pitches to reach about the halfway point on the ridge.
In 2006 Kelly Cordes and Josh Wharton climbed 45 pitches attempting the North ridge but failed to reach the true summit.
The French magazine Montagnes included Shingu Charpa's North ridge in the list of the most interesting unclimbed world routes. In 2006 the world-known " Polartec" company instituted a grant Polartec Challenge for an expedition aimed to climb it.
In the summer of 2006 the North ridge was climbed for the first time by the Ukrainian team in structure of Igor Chaplinsky, Andrey Rodiontsev and Orest Verbitsky. They got the summit in a five day round trip and needed two days to descend via ascent route. The ascent was nominated on the Piolet d'Or.
In opinion of Igor Chaplinsky also paid his attention to the East face, the most part of it can be free climbed.
In view of the light style the expedition does not plan to take a generator, a satellite phone and other blessings of civilization. Due to this fact there won't usual daily reports about ascent's going on. The last call before setting off to BC is planned from Skardu, therefrom we will try to inform about news of the expedition. Our constant attendant and friend Sergey Porodnov accompanies us and plans to return a little bit earlier, and probably he will give to the world some photos.
"Manaraga", the old friend and constant technical sponsor of the team.
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