The "Big Wall - Russian Way" project
consists in climbing new routes on the most famous walls in the
world. A mountain wall is a natural phenomenal occurrence represented
as a precipice more than 1000m long and with a steepness more than
On St.Petersburg' anniversary the strongest mountain-climbers
set to summit a still unclimbed top in the Himalayas and give
it the name "Peter Velikiy" (the project did not take place) and
to climb new russian route on the hardest North Face of Peak Jannu
in the autumn of 2003.
At present phase of the Project the members
of the team were confirmed.
The climbers are:
Odintsov- the leader, St.Petersburg
Ruchkin - St.Petersburg
Totmyanin - St.Petersburg
Devi - Ekatherinburg
Bolotov - Ekatherinburg
Pershin - Ekatherinburg
Mihailov - Bishkek
Samoylenko - St.Petersburg
Bakin - St.Petersburg
of physical training and Sport under St.Petersburg' Administration.
Articles and News:
North Face. Alexander Odintsov - interview for Mountain.RU
"...Whether we saw that we had expected?
The Wall did not present any unexpectedness. From the point
of view of extent, we knew, that it was three and a half kilometer
long, from the point of view of steepness, we knew, that the
Wall was practically vertical. Though nobody has seen it close
as anybody hasn't come up to it. If we take under consideration
the complexity of its relief, we saw that we had expected
in the bottom and average part, with one exception: the present
relief of ice-fall is the most objectively dangerous place
I have ever seen... Daytime norm was 15-20 ice-falling collapses
in different places. And we had to manoeuvre between these
traps of surprises, well, and also we expected constantly
when you would finally fill up. That we have stayed safe and
sound is the great success..."
The team leaded by Alexander Odintsov after climbing up
to the record altitude of 7200 meters on still not summited
North Face of peak Jannu now is on a back way to Katmandu.
Guys is going to arrive to Moscow on October, 27. Press
conference will take place on October, 28.
Anna Stolbova informs:
"Jannu_news Expedition leader Alexander Odintsov has
informed us of the following over the phone: they have a problem
with Internet. It has been snowing for 5 days and the Base
Camp is covered with 40-cm snow blanket. So the team has to
stay at the Base Camp. The mountains are rumbling by avalanches
around like a real war has begun. On the photo they at the
altitude about 6500 m. And the snow blanket there is about
1.5 m. It will be difficult to go out through the snow from
the Base Camp. So they are going to traverse 700 m to clip
the slope. According the weather forecast the it will become
dry from the 11-th of October. They are going to climb upper
to look at the fixed ropes left and then to make a decision.
We came in the base Camp. The Mountain looked like an absolutely
unknown mountain from there. It seemed enormous, white and
not vertical comparing with it on the photos. We were estranged
from it and we were in a quandary: "What do we have to do
and what the route should we climb?"
We couldn't pass the ice-fall looked like an intricate labyrinth
through a heap of ice-blocks. And we couldn't find the visible
exit from that site of route. To correct the ascent from another
side of the valley was impossible because of the cloudy sky.
And the ice-fall was really dangerous. Trying to shoot avalanches
going down I counted 14 ice collapses for a day. But I couldn't
shoot them through a fog- I could to tape only a roar.
The rhythm of the ascent was not set. We spent 5 days instead
of one working on the ice-fall. We couldn't take the fixed
ropes off from the ice. Everything was hidden under the snow
the plateau. I enjoyed the beautiful stiffened waves of a
snow, a game playing by penumbras. There were nice views to
shoot. But a cold wind made anyone feeling alone and homeless
there. You feel yourself like a unique warm droplet on these
open spaces! After climbing upper I could shoot a film there.
There was a little drier and there were more shafts of light
in the sky. But the valley under legs was hidden by clouds
and there was raining there. Here the snowfalls begin after
the afternoon as a rule. It takes us 4-5 hours to climb up
to the end of the fixed ropes. Sometimes we had to move hard
through the snow falling with might and main. There was even
white colour from all four sides. And if you can't understand
where you have to move: up or down, the most pleasure thing
you can do is to descend on your fixed ropes to a warm tent
in a Camp. In the mornings it's too difficult to force yourself
to wake up and begin the ascent. We spend 2,5-3 hours to have
breakfast and gather.
A lot of days and nights you have been in the great ignorance
of our expedition's details and we haven't known about everything
happening in the world. In spite of civil war in Nepal, our
broken satellite phone, injured team member had to go home
and the weather fool of autumn surprises the Five climbers
stayed in a team have climbed up to 7070m. We settled a few
high-altitude intermediate camps.
The first one was
settled at 5600m on the rock bastion. The second one- at 6500m
in a snow cave. The third one- at 7000m in a snow cave too.
We could fix two ropes upper: the first on the snow site and
the second on the Wall.
To climb the Wall upper 7000m takes 3 days to reach it. Everything
around seems like a winter has begun. It is strong snowing
now. Having worked at 7000m Bolotov, Davy, Ruchkin descended
to the Base Camp for rest. Totmyanin and Pershin are waiting
till the snowstorm will be over at 5600m. All of us are safe
and sound and wish a good luck to you and us. Ruchkin.
Hi, friends, It would
appear a monsoon comes and to struggle with it becomes more
and more difficult. If the Base Camp is covered with 30-cm
snow blanket upper 5000m we have to move through a knee-deep
and more snow blanket. A lot of our fixed ropes buried by
a three-day snowfall we couldn't dig. It isn't necessary to
fix the rope on the not steep slope while ascending it. We
go on traces we regularly renew. They are deep and to drop
out of them is difficult. But on the steep slopes avalanches
are going down unpredictable. It becomes very dangerous to
climb there. We spend a lot of forces for overcoming of a
snow. It is useless to struggle with the nature in general,
but with a monsoon especially. We decided to preserve that
equipment on the mountain that the weather has not preserved
yet. And to not stop on achieved, to continue the expedition
next spring. How as it is not sad, the expedition is had to
turn off. .
P. S. Hi, friends, As you can see on the photo
We have already got a winter for a long time in our Base Camp.
And therefore, we are moulding snowmen, missing and preparing
for a meeting of new year. If speak seriously, the expedition
is turned off, and we decided to continue it next spring.
Jannu update Ivan Samojlenko says: I ought to say my
Having seen the information on our sites I fond out that
we have turned over in the cheerful enthusiasm of information
we sent from the slopes of Jannu. The Mountain has not appeared
like a little girl named Jannu but as a terrible demon by
name Kumbakarna. Nobody of us has seen such stable bad weather.
All our plans and schedules were broken. Instead of climbing
on the rocks we have to swim through a fresh snow speeding
up of the snow rivers and play game in Russian roulette with
avalanches. We expected when we reach the Topmost Tower it
would be blown from snow. Alas and ah! You can look at the
These photos are from the 29th of September.
The Red dotted line - a track on a plateau,
in a mug - the two men on a fixed rope. To the left side -
one of the daily avalanches. If you find yourself on a plateau
-you will be dumped in the ice-fall.
Ris. I. Samoylenko
Ivan Samoylenko, a cameraman of Jannu team of "Big
Wall - Russian Way" project, has returned from Nepal.
We looked forward to meeting him in Sheremetyevo
Airport He is the first member of the expedition who has reached
us by himself keeping unique information and the films haven’t
been seen by anyone yet. He explained us emotionally the details
and we could clearly realize the picture of the events going
on the slopes of insidious and not predicted Jannu.
Have I managed to shoot a film, as I
wanted? Certainly, no! It seems to me it just couldn’t be.
But exotic character of the events has been taken sufficiently.
My original idea was to ascend 7000m, where I considered were
entirely another views: route, high altitude, but… The state
of mountain proved us to be not such as we expected. We planned
to climb on the rocks (Can you remember a granite tooth on
the photo?), but we had to swim through snow! Uzbek Expedition
leaded by Shabalin and Tukhvatullin had reached the Wall for
10 days, but our team "killed" three weeks to get there and
each day was like we dispatched to the battle!
We have no luck neither only at the weather
this autumn but at the connection on satellite phone: It "died"
itself without any clear reasons (now, as we know, the problem
with the connection they have solved). Extraordinary accidents
with Mikhaylov and Odintsov got us out of time and corrected
All of us consider unanimous: no one
of us has no met such a living, active icefall. At first the
daring plan of Alexander Odintsov was to rush by this dangerous
part of the route (approximately 1200m on the vertical line)
for one day. We thought, that it would be easier to go on
the ice, than to climb on the rocks. But as it appeared the
relief of icefall is changing very rapidly and radically:
that part easily passed by Uzbek’s team several years ago
had probably just fell down. Three days we "rummaging" on
this icefall – climbing on the turn between the swinging ice
dims of 5-8m height.
It became clear soon that it would be
more simply to climb the rock site: this experienced team
would climb on the rock route about 5B category safe and sound
for the pair of days.
Now the ropes, leading upward, were fixed
exactly on these rocks. Probably, it was necessary to change
the direction of movement. But then it seemed we were to close
And we consider the ice fall accident
happened with Mike Mikhailov just a simple statistics. For
three days seven people were going up and down on the extremely
dangerous place, and there was accumulated a level of accident
risk. And the situation discharged such a way.
When the accident occurred, Totmyanin
was next to Mike: he had time to flatten somehow against the
wall and to rescue, and then he dug up Mikhailov.
A huge ice-fall on, which was fixed the
rope, fell down. Mike went on the rope thus he lost fulcrum
and fell. And several enormous ice lumps collapsed from the
top and chunks icy two-meter "cubes" were wedged between themselves
that is why they didn’t squash him.
Well, further – there were the stressed
saving works. Two days we prepared to descend him on the ropes,
and waited for a helicopter, without any hoping: they said
to us at once that all civil helicopters were mobilized. We
had a lucky chance that the pilot of a helicopter appeared
a Russian: only the Russian could help us at such bad weather
conditions in this situation. The Nepalian simply did not
The state of mountain was very hard.
We didn’t have any rest day. Each day we had to work hard
like a navvy. The weather was just disgusting. And all those
accidents were on the top of ii all. The accident with Odintsov
happened on 25 or 26 September. A stone flew off, bounced
off his helmet, and struck his hand - at the altitude about
I just was going to ascend up to 5400m
to shoot the work on the route. At first we couldn’t determine
whether he had got his hand with a strong injury or a crack
of a beam bone. I fixed his hand bandaged to the hand of stick,
and went upward to work, and Alexander began to descend.
All team members endure the high altitude
normally, but they are strongly tired. It takes 7 hours to
trek from below up to 5600m. You have to trek hard for another
day to reach 6400m. After that, you have to work for 2 days
of to move forward and through that heavy snow. Nikolay Totmyanin
(Tatosha) feels himself the best of all at the high altitude:
he has an infinite capacity of health for work!
It always is snowing upper, snowy streams
are flowing along all couloirs. From time to time large avalanches
are descending. Under such conditions a good jump-suit is
so indispensable thing. (gale jump-suit from Dermizax made
by BASK) - snow is flowing, and you is completely closed,
and feel warm all the time. But generally, concerning the
gear, each loves that, to what he get used to. Ruchkin and
Pershin, for example, enjoy windblock. Totmyanin, after climbing
up to 6400m, inquired powder puff (not long before he used
it as a pillow in the Base Camp) it substituted for it), and
soon Bolotov wanted the same. Now, probably all climbers wear
the powder puffs there. It became chilly. When I was going
down, an intermediate snowy cave was dug out at 7000m. Everything
seems very complex. Every day we awaited the Wall be cleaned
and opened from the snow. Our wishes did not come true. When
I was descending on 28 September, the Wall was still white
as before. But our “soldiers” still have got the reserve of
time and power.
Mountain.RU note: And there has also
been a rumour going around us that all members backed safely
in BC to make a final decision: the route they had planned
for now looks impossible, the way too loaded and avalanche
danger was definitely high. So they will look...
Royal Mt. Trekking (P) Ltd informs:
Lost dispatch …
On September, 27 Ruchkin wrote:
We are all safe and sound and this is the main thing. On
September, 12 while we were working the ice-fall up at about
5300m a huge-sized ice block tumbled from the ice-fall and
Mike Mikhailov was involved in serious ice fall accident.
He was evacuated from 5000m in tough weather conditions,
in a fog by Mi-8MTV-helicopter piloting by the Russian pilot
Kolesnikov to Katmandu's hospital and now he is still there.
And all began in working ways. On September, 10 Ruchkin, Totmyanin,
Mihailov started to work up the ice-fall in the lower part
of the North Face of Jannu. The ice-fall impressed us. It
is also called Khumbu-2. The stories of the Uzbek expedition
on Jannu have proved to be true: to start climbing the ice-fall
without a glass of alcohol beverages is terrible. The team
made some ascents. First day we fixed the rope and made 16
pitches. As we couldn't see the end of the chaotic location
of ice blocks we descended and spent a night under the Wall
and decided to make the final attempt to climb the plateau
tomorrow. Next day we took more ropes and tried to climbed
upper. After making two pitches to our regret we should turn
back because of the great 5-7m- width crack. But as they say,
"the locomotive has gone", as the equipment was brought with
regularity. We had to spend a night settled the tents on a
big ice block on the middle of the ice-fall.
On September 12 we descended to the 8th rope and began to
ascend via another route on the right side. To find way in
an ice labyrinth was not quite simple. It looks like the ulimit
in the American film "Vertical limit". Handing two ice tools
we had to make multi-jumps from one serac to another. There
wasn't any route there. All looked like a solid mass of fallen
ice blocks. Finally we made the 15th pitch and reach the rock
going in parallel with the ice-fall. At 13.00 at 5000m we
fond the signs of other expedition's stays. We made sure of
the right way we went. We had enough time and decided to not
stop climbing. The team's members climbed one by one bringing
the gear and the camp. We climbed upper. Out simple route
ran between the ice-fall and the rock. Making the seventh
pitch I had had no time to make a station as I heard a thunder
and felt the rope jerked and gripped the handles of the tools
stronger. The ropes stretched as a string. That moment I would
tear off from the ice I held on with the help of the ice axes.
I made the belay station and began descending in a hurry.
The huge ice block overhanging as a turned horn I was afraid
when I was passing under tumbled. I couldn't recognize the
place of my station. An ice wall that served as a cover was
taken off. All around was showered with broken ice blocks.
Mikhail was standing strewn up the waist and the ice stones
jammed his legs. As it appeared he was standing next to Nikolay
Totmyanin at the station at that moment. We found out that
Mikhail got off with scratches, bruises and fear, gave him
a jab and called Mikhail Davy and Alex Bolotov who were at
5000m after climbing the gear for help began to descend with
the injured climber. He was the good fellow when he descended
in his own. We only helped him a little. He could move hard
and painfully. There were 200 hard meters he should to go
on the snow and stones to the tent. Alex hoisted him into
his back brought him to our high-altitude Camp at 5000m helped
from different sides. In the tent we put him to a warm sleeping-bag
and communicated with our doctor Bakin. He guided us to do
all necessary medical operation. To find a helicopter in Nepal
is too difficult because of struggle with Maoists we consider
so all next day we decided whether any helicopter could evacuate
him from the ledge of the wall at 5000m altitude, would we
have enough money to pay for it and many other question. There
was a miracle. The helicopter could land at such weather conditions
when we could hardly see it. We were so proud for Russian
Odintsov, Pershin and Totmyanin took Mikhail wrapped up in
a sleeping-bag into a helicopter was hanging in the air for
a moment. Mikhail is in now, without any doubt in good hospital.
The doctors who treat the King now are treating him and we
hope they will put him on his legs. It is a pity to understand
that he will not climb the mountain together with us. The
weather does not indulge us. There is raining all the days
and nights. The sun appears for a few hours in the mornings
reminding about its existence.
Tomorrow Davy and Bolotov is climbing the part of the gear
and food up to 5000m and going to try to fix the rope till
the plateau. At the moment we are all in the Base Camp and
w e send warm greetings to all friends.
Hoping for the next communication,
Royal Mt. Trekking (P) Ltd informs:
After the 15th of September it seems our satellite phone Turaya
started to live its own life. It finds the satellite and there
is a constant signal, but it does not recognize anybody and
does not call. We don't have any communications with continent,
either with Russia, or Katmandu. That is why we have been
lost in the Internet and we couldn't have put on the air.
A unique communication we use now, is the doctor who is running
down to Gunsa for 3 hours for communication on radio station
with Taplejung. But it isn't yet everything. From Taplejung
they call to Rojal Maunt Trekking office in Katmandu and ask
them to come on there by the fixed time for communication.
And the information is transmitted at very bad audibility,
intelligibility and perhaps imagination. Then the doctor is
running back 6 hours to our Base Camp. There is everything
normal at us except for the weather. Though have already started
to get used to it. The weather is stable: every day and night
it is raining or snowing. The sun is shining for a few hours
a day, and our gear doesn't have enough time to dry. Then
a fog covers everything. It looks like an animated cartoon
"Hedgehogs in a fog ". In a fog the rain is already drizzling
and sometimes it is snowing. It seems like the winter coming.
But in spite of all these charms we regular go on a route
to throw a gear a little higher and ascend further. At present
we have climbed up to 6400-6500m, and settled the temporary
camp at 6100-6200m. And we sally out from it under a snow
dropping out of a fog or showering from the wall.
The North Face of Jannu looks at us in absolutely other attire
completely covered and wrapped up in a snow. The Wall was
not cleared of a snow till now. Today is the 27th of September
and for the first time there is the sun shining from the morning.
There isn't any fog, Everything is covered with rime and frozen
up. In the Base Camp the temperature is 5 degrees below zero
since the morning, but grass is still green. We hope that
this simply bad summer. Finally the picture of the area has
shown itself. We can see the snow and rocky summits, overhanging
ice-falls. Huge-sized ice blocks tumble from them with a roar
with frequency of departure of local trains but they do not
fright us any more.
and Pershin are working upper on the route digging a snow
cave at 6500m. It's planned as a staging post on a way to
7000 meters under the Wall. For the short period Alexander
Odintsov has taken the doctor's bench. Ascending on fixed
rope he threw down a big stone with the rope and tried to
parry it by his head and a hand. As a result the head has
remained intact but he has got his hand with a strong injury
or a crack of a beam bone. He has woken up plaster. All is
going right course. Having worked at high-altitude some days,
the group, descend in the Camp to rest. Then couple of days
we ascend to the end of fixed rope with the gear-cargo and
make a force of working for some days to climb higher. Tomorrow
Bolotov and Davy are starting to ascend the route. Certainly,
when this information will reach the centre, it has become
a little obsolete. We sent one of Nepalians in Katmandu to
change the satellite phone and we hope that he will come running
back soon, and communication will be adjusted soon.
See you soon.
With huge greetings from all us,
Royal Mt. Trekking (P) Ltd informs:
On October, 2 broken satellite phone was taken Katmandu, and
THURAYA put at expedition disposal the new one. Today, on
October, 3 Igor Kulishov left for Tapledjung. He's about to
be back at Base Camp on October, 5-6.
Igor Kulishov informs:
On Monday, October, 1, at 17.20 local time, Odintsov reported
via radio that he had hairline fracture - he proposed being
ready for climbing again in about a week. 4 days ago his
teammates moved up to 7000m and there dug the cave. Everything
Igor Kulishov informs:
I've got a radio message from Gunza, expedition leader
has had a hand fracture. Evidently they speak about Odintsov
but the locals could be mistaken. We don't know any details
besides that he doesn't need to be evacuated. Doctor Bakin
has all wherewithal for wound repair. As soon as we get
some news we'll inform you immediately.
Igor Kulishov informs:
"Today, on Wednesday, 24, at 12h00 local time, the expedition
doctor Mikhail Bakin reported via radio that during two days
the weather condition left much to be desire but the guys
continued moving forward. They decided also to send the
satellite telephone to test and to repair to Katmandu. I hope
that in 7-10 days I'll leave for BC with a good nonfailed
phone. Ivan Samojlenko - the cameraman - is going to come
down from BC in 2-3 days."
You may send the message Jannu-team via firstname.lastname@example.org
Igor Kuleshov informs:
Monday,15h00 local time. Mikhail Bakin reports via radio that
everything goes right way. Totmjanin and Pershin are planning
to climb tommorow, the rest are on the mountain. They've established
Camp II at 6000m and going to push the route forward. Odintsov
and Ruchkin will descend to Base Camp tommorow.
Igor Kulishov informes:
"Today, in spite of the general strike I succeded to
check up the subscriber's account and support - everything
is OK. It seems there is a problem in the telephone receiver.
Misha will leave for Bishkek today (via Deli). He has hip-bone
contusion and two ribs fracture (on the left side). I'm going
to be back to Base Camp but it depends on the situation with
the telephone connection.
On Sunday, just after the strike completion, I will try to
get local radio contact with Gunza and ask somebody there
to go up to BC and thus to keep in touch with the members
of the expedition, maybe some of them (most likely the cook
or kitchen boy) will low down to Gunza with the dispatches.
Igor Kuleshov informed from Katmandu:
"We've got information that the guys have some problems with
the telephone communication. Tommorow it will be three days
general strike in Katmandu. Misha Mihajlov will leave for
Bishkek by air liner on Friday, September, 19. He is OK".
On Friday, 12 an accident occurs with the youngest team-member
Michail Mihailov. He was involved in serious ice fall
accident while he was trying climbing up the ice part at 5100m.
He has injured badly and the situation became complicated
with his nontransportability from that altitude. The team-mates
watched by his bedside by turn and yesterday, on Sunday, 15,
the helicopter picked Misha up from the wall and he was evacueted
to Katmandu's hopital. The rest is OK.
The climbing will go on via another way proposed by Pershin,
Davy and Bolotov, their variant seems maybe more technically
difficalt but more safety.
The latest news from 11.09.03
"Hello, friends! It turned out that the life corrected
10.09.03 Ruchkin, Totmyanin and Mihaylov fixed 16 ropes
over the ice part and descended to spend night in the Camp
installed by Odintsov and Pershin right at the foot of the
ice fall. At the same time Mikhail Davy and Alex Bolotov ascended
as higher as possible and lifted the part of the equipment
and the ropes. However the glacier proved to be harder and
more tangled then we supposed.
11.09.03 The leading three-men and Bolotov added them
fixed two ropes more upwards, lift the load and came up against
the huge splits. They had to descend to the 8th rope and to
search another way to climb the ice fall. Today they are spending
this night on the small plate among the ice fall. It's such
a safe place. And tomorrow they are going to search for a
new way. That part of the ice fall was quite firm with the
ice covered by a layer of shifting ground. While the right
part of the ice fall to has crumbled we think. And the huge
ice blocks are continuing to fall every five minutes. I decided
to ascend the opposite side's slope tomorrow a little higher
to coordinate on a radio transmitter the Alex's climbing.
It's everything OK in our Base Camp. We all send the warmest
regards to our friends, familiars who support us.
Bye-bye Mikhail Davy.
The latest news:
Hi, all our dear friends, familiars. Everything is all right.
Finally we reached the Base Camp (4500m) near Jannu after
a long 7-hours march from Gunza in spite of Maoists, civic
wars, unflying helicopters and terrible leeches. All the way
we could enjoy the nature of those pleases. The mountain was
like mirage appearing through the mist and the storm clouds
and disappearing. The weather was playing with us. And it
was always raining in the afternoon.
09.09.03 The Camp was adorned with sacred flags,
fires, rice and consecrated by sacred Nepal's prayers to bring
us luck and good weather. All the day we were preparing
for tomorrow's start and inspecting our equipment. It was
planned Ruchkin, Totmyanin and Mihaylov to work the ice falls
and then to climbed the plateau at 5400m and all the others
to have working trekking to lift the equipment and to install
10.09.03 the above-mentioned guys went out to assault
at 06.30. At 08.30 they were under the ice falls. The others
went out at 09.30. This part of the route isn't safe so we
should take off the ropes. Tomorrow three-men Bolotov, Davy,
Pershin are planning to fix rope over the steeper and difficult
but less dangerous rock route to go round the ice falls. And
four-men Ruchkin, Totmyanin, Mihaylov, Odintsov are going
to climb straight upwards.
Wish us good luck and good weather, Odintsov, Ruchkin, Davy.
Aleksandr Odintsov called from the Base Camp and
said that after a week's way they reached the place at last.
They are going to be resting tomorrow but the 10th of September
they'll start to work.
"Hi, all friends, we are all right.
We had to keep silence and to tiptoe through the taiga to
avoid meeting mayoists. Now we are nearly in Los Angeles.
They call so a small village (altitude 2350m). Actually it's
named Amjulhasa. Now start in succession. We were living
in clover in Taplejung village negotiating about a helicopter
for three days and nights and. But it seems to take a
helicopter is a great luxury in Nepal. Finally we became tired,
and all members began to beat a hoof and we decided to go…
large caravan comprised 67 porters including three women.
Three men were caring a luggage of 65kg and some of the others
were caring 45kg. The White man or woman would die but the
sherps are very hardy and unpretentious people. Their children
go to school for a few hours a day getting across mountain
With the help of two bottles of changa we persuaded the sherps
to move faster as soon as possible to make several crossings
a day. It takes 7-8 hours and was very serious. Usually the
trek Taplejung-Jannu takes 7-8 days. We are planning to do
it for 3-4 days.
First day we hopped to Mitlung (altitude 900m) for
4 hours. We stayed for the lodging for a night at a hotel
like a balcony on the second floor. The second crossing Mitlung-Topletok
(altitude 1300m) took 7 hours. Topletok is fantastic! The
hotel like a shed turned out was closed. So we had to install
an only huge tent on a good ground. All the night it was raining.
It seemed as a river flowed right here. We didn't enjoy very
much being there at all when some guys were washed away under
the neighbouring awning.
crossings were very dangerous. And you are been waiting
on each meter of the path by…. Maoists? Not, leeches. They
are like wild hungry animals. Some guys managed to catch 10
leeches at once. But the doctor calmed us down and said that
some people paid a lot of many for applying leeches and you
got them free as in a health resort.
Today is the 5th of September and with a bit of luck we
can get Gunsa. The temperature is about 30°C at night
in shade and it rises till 50°C in the Sun. The humidity is
simply incredible- 69% probably. It could depend on a lot
of waterfalls, rivers and streams we encounter here. But we
are still keeping going with all our will-power despite sweating
and growing thin. We had a lodging for a night in a hotel-balcony
again. Fortunately we found beer there and we drunk a little
of course to resist such the mad heat and to improve our health.
Thanks to the doctor's prescription to eat 30gr of Whiskas
to avoid catching liver worms we are still living. And now
our toast is "Liver worms go home!" in place of Russian "Your
health!" We are alive, we love all of you, and we are not
going to be missing and we say to you: "Good-bye!"
On the 8th of September we are in Gunsa. All of us
are assembled. Samoylenko and Kuznetsov look like aboriginals.
Tomorrow we are starting to Kombachen and then going to the
Base Camp. It takes 5 hours. The yaks are caring the luggage
and we are caring ourselves. It's not so bad. Hope for the
next connection from the base Camp.
Ruchkin and companions"
Hello friends, As the situation with the helicopter
hasn't been solved, we have chosen to start to BC with the
caravan. Today, September 1, we were driving for 10 hours
non-stop along a very bad road, but in the end had only aching
backs and 25 km distance from Fidim. Though we did reach
our destination - Taplejung village - but the truck with
our luggage failed to start today, so it will arrive tomorrow
evening at best. We stayed in the only functioning hotel -
it's hasn't been built up to the end yet - it has no electricity,
so we'll have some problems with charging our laptop. We had
a meeting with the head of local police office. He doesn't
think we will have any problems with mayoists during the trekking,
because they hate mainly Americans. To be on the safe side,
we took red T-shirts with hammer and sickle (national anthem
of the former USSR) with us
For the time being we are planning to proceed from here with
the porters the day after tomorrow.
Best regards to everyone, Mikhail Devi.
Aleksandr Odincov report:
"Hi, everyone, August 15, our whole team summited
Khan-Tengri peak, and the following day all members safely
descended to Base Camp. According to the results of altimeters'
measurements, the snow dome this year is 30 meters higher
than the tripod (which is 6995m over sea level), so the climbing
of Khan-Tengri can be considered to be the climbing of a 7-thousender
if you reach the top of this dome
The team spent 2 nights at 6400m for better acclimatization.
During the whole time of the ascent the weather was perfect.
Tomorrow we are planning to take a helicopter back to civilization,
where Alexei Bolotov is waiting for us in Karakol.
We have tickets from Bishkek to Delhi on August 22, and
further to Katmandu on August 24, but it hasn't been confirmed
yet. Is this is true, we'll try to get Indian visas in
Bishkek so that we won't have to hang around 2 days in Delhi
airport. We'll tell you our new email address a bit later,
Good luck, Till soon. "
Chronicle of Khan Tengri Acclimatizing Ascent.
The Odintsov's team has made the acclimatazing ascent of Khan-Tengri.
In the evening, August, 6 they were at Camp I at 4200m. On
Thursday, 6 at 7 a.m. they went along the Semenovsky Glacier
to Camp II situated at the end of icefall at the altitude
of 5250m. In the unceasing snowfall they spent the rest of
the day in their tents. There was a heavy fall of snow in
the night (20cm of snow-blanket).
On Friday, 8 the weather has become better, it became possible
to go up to Camp III (5800m), situated at the dam between
the peak Khan-Tengri and the peak Chapaev. The night was spent
at the snow cave.
On Saturday, 9 at 9.00a.m. the team downhilled at the Tjan
Shan' Travel Base Camp, located at the U.Inilchek Glacier
Jannu -2003. 8.08.03
The message from Mikhail Mihailov, Khan-Tengri :
"The team has started an acclimatizing ascent. This night
they spend at Camp II at 5300m. The weather doesn't give any
cause for joy, it's snowing hard every day and there is a
high avalanche risk. Tommorow if the weather allows them to
go on, the guys have an intention to climb up to the col at
Camp II, at 5900m."