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General sponsor of the projectis BASK company (extreme clothing and equipment)
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Great Sail Peak

The team:
Alexander Odintsov (St.Peterburg, Russia) - Master of sports of International class, the leader of the project "Big Walls: Russian Routes"
Alexander Ruchkin (Omsk, Russia) - Master of sports of International class, Multi-champion and prize-winner at the Championships of CIS, Russia, bronze in the Championship of the USSR
Mikhail Devi (Ekaterinburg, Russia) - Master of sports of International class, 25 ascents of the highest category of difficulty, 10 first ascents, Multi-champion and prize-winner of the Championships of the USSR, Russia, Army Forces
Alexander Klyonov (Ekaterinburg, Russia) - Master of sports of International class, 24 ascents of the highest category of difficulty, 9 first ascents, one of the best technical climbers in Russia
Valery Rozov (Moscow, Russia) - Master of Sports in Mountaineering, professional BASE-jumper and sky-surfer. The leader of the "Russian Extreme Project", www.ruexp.ru

Ivan Samoilenko - cameraman
Lev Dorfman - cameraman
Mikhail Bakin - doctor
Dmitri Lifanov - correspondent and photographer

Read about the previous ascent within the frames of the project "Big Walls: Russian Roues":

"BASK - Latok III expedition", Karakorum

Sponsors:
The general information and out-door wear sponsor - "BASK" company (Moscow)
Climbing gear - "IRBIS" company (St.Petersburg)
Photo and video equipment - "CANON"
"SALOMON" company
The expedition is organized with the help of "BARS" bridge-repairs company

Sponsors of the two members from Ekaterinburg:
General sponsor - "Spasextreme-Vysotnik" ltd.
"MANARAGA"
"SEROVMYASO"
Regional association "Ural Real Estate Chamber"
"Est Variant!" newspaper
"220V" supermarket
"Evromebel" ltd.
"Ural-Alp ALVOTITANIUM"

Russian

"Bask - Great Sail Peak"
Expedition

Great Sail Peak, Baffin Island
Projects "Big Walls: Russian Routes" and "Russian Extreme Project"

Expedition News:

(6.06.2002)
News from the expedition. Great Sail Peak explorers have returned to Toronto
On the fifth of June two last groups of 'BASK - Great Sail Peak' expedition reached Toronto. On Sunday they will fly to Moscow..
The members were getting to the Continent separately. Firstly, an advance team of Alexander Odintsov, Valery Rozov and Ivan Samoilenko flew to Toronto. They spent there two days, arranged everything for their triumphal press-conference, took two cars and went to an airport to meat their friends.
All climbers were deeply impressed with green grass, which made a harsh contrast with snow-white solitudes of Baffin Island. The athletes are save and sound. First flush of victory helped them to withstand extreme fatigue after climbing the Face of Great Peak.
Alexander Klenov was laconic during his phone call:
"The route turned to be very handsome; coherent and extremely difficult. We got exhausted and prostrated with fatigue. Though we were impressed with the beautiful nature, with such views -
Bolts were used only for fixing a portaledge and once for a pendulum. We worked in one shift as Arctic day enabled us to work till 3am.
We send our greetings to all who was with us during these days, who helped us. The best regards to our sponsors, who were permanently supporting us".

(30.05.2002)
A telephone call from Valery Rozov. The wall has been climbed!!!
"During the night from May, 26 to May, 27, the entire team reached the summit! 1500 metres of absolutely new route has been covered. The ascent lasted about two weeks. The climbers spent over 24 hours on the top waiting for the good weather. On May, 28, Valery Rozov performed a BASE-jump in a "wing suit" from the highest point of the wall. Everyone is feeling fine.On May, 29 all the guys descended. They are planning to have some rest and will soon leave for the Main Land."
Our heartest congratulations to the winners!

(23.05.2002)
Ivan Samoilenko reports from the Baffin Island
"May, 21. The preparatory stage of the ascent was succesfully finished yesterday. The team untied the lower ropes. The whole group disassembled ABC and carried all these loads - about 140 kg - to BC. The situatuion for today: the team climbed seven ropes to the ledge, where the portaledges are hanging now. Everyone is busy providing water. And six more ropes have been fixed on the main wall. There are still four more ropes left, which can be used for the work on the wall. The guys climb three ropes a day. The work starts at 1 p.m. and goes on till 11- 12 p.m. There is no night. Everyone is in good health. As it is always a habit with him, Odintsov was struck with a stone on his knee. But today he reported that he is Ok. In BC it is a rest day today. For breakfast we had fried eggs with red fish, coffee with rum and chocolate.
We are getting close to nature. Volodya went fishing and brought 40 ikalus - local kind of fish. We had a real holiday: our ration was enriched with salted, fried and boiled fish. Volodya managed to become friends with a couple of polar foxes by feeding them with fish. He videotaped them. Dima Lifanov, the cameraman, is disappointed with being unable to film the herds of polar bears. We are trying to comfort him. Though we are all a bit afraid that a bear will visit us some day - we saw his footprints not far from the BC. Everyone got used to cold. The only thing we are depressed by - is being unable to wash our dirty clothes. Ten more days - and we will return to civilization."

(17.05.2002)
News from the "BASK - Great Sail Peak" expedition. Sergei Porodnov - guest from the Baffin Island: impressions from the first hands.
Just a couple of hours ago Sergei Porodnov - the eye-witness and member of the events on the Baffin Island - was received as a guest at BASK. He told many breath-taking details
Sergei Porodnov from Ekaterinburg called himself a sherp and at the same time sponsor of the two expedition members from the Urals: Klyonov and Devi. Together with the team he covered a difficult way across ice and took part in carrying expedition loads from the place where snowmobiles could reach to BC.
May, 10, when snowstorm broke under the Wall, Sergei left the inhospitable Baffin, made a short but interesting trip round Canada, and on May, 16, landed in Moscow. In the airport he was met by BASK employees. He still had several hours before his flight to Ekaterinburg, so we could enjoy most entertaining details from the first hands (the full story of the witness will be published pretty soon).
Sergei passed us a letter from Valery Rozov. Though the events described in it are already known to everybody who follows the expedition news, still the lines written on the other end of the Earth are of great value.

(15.05.2002)
Valera Rozov called this morning. Four rope pitches are done. Valera performed the second BASE jump.
"Klyonov and Devi are on the wall of the Great Sail Peak now. The guys work 14 hours a day. All in all four rope pitches are done. The guys plan to reach a ledge by tomorrow, and the rest of the team will shuttle loads to this point. Yesterday 14.05 Valera Rozov, Lev Dorfman and Dima Lifanov once again climbed the neighboring peak (the new name is "Peak Pobedy"/"Victory Peak") and Valera performed his second BASE jump from the top.
The weather is cold, true severe winter, polar day, and amazingly beautiful scenery around us - all this creates some strange feeling of unreality. Today we caught a tub of fish in a fjord and cooked delicious fish-soup. Right now we are sitting and eating it and recollect home, our relatives and friends. We still fail to run the computer and telephone - must be some problems with communications, so, unfortunately, it looks like we won't be able to send a picture. The guys are sending there hellos to everybody."

(13.05.2002)
May,13. Valery Rozov and Mikhail Devi report from Baffin Island. An unnamed peak has been climbed, and Valery Rozov performed a BASE jump from its top.
"May,13. From the third attempt Valera Rozov, Lev Dorfman and Dima Lifanov managed to climb the unnamed peak situated next to Great Sail Peak, where the expedition had already started to work on the new route. They named it "Peak Pobedy"(Victory Peak) in connection with the recent holiday - Victory Day! The aim of this ascent was BASE jump.
The previous attempts failed because of the bad weather and poor visibility. It took the climbers 8 hours to get to the top, deep fresh snow hampered the way up. If it were not for the ski-tours, the ascent would have been next to impossible. We made it happen: the first BASE jump from the unclimbed peak! Indescribable feeling, true revelation! We are happy!
The height of the peak is 1480m, BC is at 50m above the sea level, the height difference of the wall is 800m of pure overhanging part, free falling time is 40 seconds in "Krylo" (Wing) suit. Though the weather was sunny, it was cold - about 10 degrees below zero. There are many faces like this good for BASE jumping in the vicinity of our camp. The only problem is very changeable rather cold weather and vast distances."
Today Odintsov and Ruchkin continued their work on the route on the Great Sail Peak. Fresh snow made it difficult to get to the wall from ABC. It took the climbers 3.5 hours instead of 1 (as it was during the first ascent of this part done by Devi and Klyonov) to cover the height difference of 500m. They managed to climb one more rope pitch before the evening. Tomorrow Odintsov and Ruchkin will continue their work on the wall, later Klyonov and Devi will replace them and, most probably, will organize portaledge bivy to save time and strength wasted on the way from ABC to the wall. The weather is changeable. It is warm only in BC big tent. Everybody is healthy and in high spirits, sending hello to all relatives and friends and to all those who is following the news from our expedition. "
Alexei Myasnikov, www.alpclub.ur.ru

(13.05.2002)
May, 10. Ivan Samoilenko reports from Baffin Island. The first rope of the route has been fixed.
"The North wind is blowing for the third day. It is cold. The pressure is dropping. Klyonov and Devi fixed the first rope of the route yesterday. Today they returned to BC. Valera Rozov with his friends made a reconnaissance trip to the plateau on the top. They discovered deep snow and vast polar fields there. It became clear that we would have to spend one night on the route on our roundabout way to the top. Though there is no night here - simply the temperature drops by 10 degrees. When will the spring come as Inuits promised us? We are sitting in the Inuit tent waiting. Preference, chess, books. Nobody has any health problems. The doctor gives us vitamins and alcohol".

(8.05.2002)
The latest news from Baffin Island. Alexander Odintsov made a call
May,7.Alexander Odintsov called from Baffin Island (Polar Canada):
The team organized BC on the SE bank of the inner lake where the Great Sail Peak is situated. The profile of our wall can be seen and it really impresses.
Yesterday 06.05 eight people carried some equipment for ABC to the foot of the wall. The distance from BC to the mountain turned out to be larger than we had hoped for - about 2.5 hours along the frozen lake.
Today we will make sort of sledges from skis and continue carrying loads to ABC. It snows every day, today it became warmer - 15 degrees below zero. We melt ice to get water.
Everyone sees incredibly vivid dreams, we are haunted by the feeling of unreality. We are missing our relatives and friends. Everybody is healthy and energetic. "

May,4. Alexander Odintsov reports from Baffin Island: "The team is in several hours walk from BC. Snowmobiles didn't reach BC. We are in for a several days' work of carrying loads to the wall. Our camp is in a picturesque place with bear's footprints. Everything is OK.
We are planning to start working on the route May, 6-7. The weather is good, 10 degrees below zero. A bit cloudy, sunny. Best wishes. We love you."

(7.05.2002)
Valera Rozov called on the 2nd of May and reported the following information:
Everything is Ok with the team. Yesterday they took a flight to Clyde River and stopped in some wooden hut for a night. The temperature was 10 - 15 degrees below zero with very strong wind. The team hired six snowmobiles with sledges and six local Eskimos, who will live for a couple of days together with the expedition members in the Base Camp, and then they will leave the guns with the team and return home. Tomorrow morning our guys are heading for the BC. They are sending their regards to everybody.

(6.05.2002)
May, 2. Misha Devi has just called from Canada. Email still won't work
"Today the team is in Clyde River village. This is the last civilized place on the continent. The weather is sunny, but the wind is strong and the cold is bitter - we nearly got frostbitten when moving on snowmobiles! Tomorrow we are leaving for the Base Camp. It will take us one day to get there provided snowmobiles work properly.
In this area even in the most remote nook there are proper hotels, internet, telephone. You can get connected with any place on the globe for a small amount of money - 19 cents per minute.
Our expedition is escorted by two Eskimos, they are adamant on being called Inuits, but they resemble our Chukchi men a lot "
According to www.alpclub.ur.ru

(29.04.2002)
April, 28. Alexander Klyonov reports from Toronto:
Alexander Klyonov: "All days are filled with organizational moments, all day today we were busy buying different stuff in Toronto. We have the impression that Canada is full of Russians - conversations and signs in Russian are everywhere. It's rather cold here. We are horrified to think what awaits us on the Pole. We'll spend tomorrow here, and then leave for Ottava, and take a flight from there to Clyde river on April, 29, and further - on sledges. We all experience the time shift. And I am the only one who got used to new time."
Alexei Myasnikov, www.alpclub.ur.ru

(26.04.2002)
April, 26, the team "BASK - Great Sail Peak" left Moscow for Toronto (Canada)

(26.04.2002)
"BASK - Great Sail Peak" expedition. BASK company press-conference
April, 25, BASK company press-conference devoted to unique expedition BASK - Great Sail Peak" to Baffin Island, took place in Moscow

(24.04.2002)
The start of the "BASK - Great Sail Peak" expedition will be in time. Canadian Embassy issued visas for the team of Odintsov
April, 26, as planned, the expedition members are leaving for Canada. Russian Embassy in Canada is getting ready with press-conference for this project. All the expedition news will be delivered for the Russian audience in real time via satellite connection, provided by the team's sponsor - "BASK" company

(23.04.2002)
The start of the "BASK - Great Sail Peak" expedition in under threat. Canadian Embassy hasn't issued visas yet for the alpinists
Further delay in the Embassy can cause additional expenses and also additional risk for the team. If the climb completes too late, the sea now frozen will be opened and it will not be possible to return using frozen sea - the only known way to the Great Sail Peak. In this case the team will have to retreat across the Baffin Island which is vast and absolutely unexplored

(18.04.2002)
"Russian Way - The Walls of the World". The next stage of the project.
The team of the climbers under the leadership of Alexander Odintsov, master of sports of the international class, starts the next stage of the project "Russian Way - The Walls of the World"

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