New Austro-Canadian Route on Nanga Parbat

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The Austro-Canadian North-West route is shown with red dots and the Kinshofer route is shown with blue dots. Nanga Parbat (26,660 feet), first climbed in 1953 by Herman Buhl, is the 9th highest mountain in the world and is the furthest west of the 14 Himalayan 8,000 meter peaks. Photo courtesy of louisrousseau.com.

The Austro-Canadian North-West route is shown with red dots and the Kinshofer route is shown with blue dots. Nanga Parbat (26,660 feet), first climbed in 1953 by Herman Buhl, is the 9th highest mountain in the world and is the furthest west of the 14 Himalayan 8,000 meter peaks. Photo courtesy of louisrousseau.com.

An ariel view of the Austro-Canadian North-West route shown with the yellow/blue dots on the left side of the photo. The red line shows the standard Kinshofer route on Pakistan's Nanga Parbat, or "Naked Mountain" in English. Photo courtesy of louisrousseau.com.

An ariel view of the Austro-Canadian North-West route shown with the yellow/blue dots on the left side of the photo. The red line shows the standard Kinshofer route on Pakistan

After a three-month expedition to Pakistan Canadian Louis Rousseau and Austrian Gerfried Göschl climbed a new route on Nanga Parbat and made two attempts to climb K2.

The goal of the team was to forge new routes on two 8,000 meter peaks: Nanga Parbat (8,125 meters) and K2 (8,611 meters). The team consisted of Rousseau, of Montreal, Quebec, and four Austrians: Gerfried Göschl (trip leader), Sepp Bachmair, Hans Goger, and Günther Unterberger. According to Rousseau, "Günther was definitely one of the strongest among us on the new route, but suffered problems with altitude and had to return to camp 4 on summit push." On a 2007 expedition the five climbers summitted Broad Peak (8,047 meters) and attempted K2.

After their acclimatization on Nanga Parbat’s normal route, the Kinshofer, the five of them ventured into unknown terrain on the northwestern part of the mountain. After four days, they reached camp 4, at about 7,200 meters, as planned. Their brand new Austro-Canadian North-West route, is over 2,000 meters long with several technical climbing sections. During this climb, another team suffered a tragic loss and lost one of its members, Wolfgang Kölblinger, who was climbing the Kinshofer route.

Louis Rousseau and Gerfried Göschl on the summit of Nanga Parbat. Photo courtesy of louisrousseau.com

Louis Rousseau and Gerfried Göschl on the summit of Nanga Parbat. Photo courtesy of louisrousseau.com

Rousseau, Göschl and Bachmair still decided to continue on to K2 but abandoned the idea of climbing a new route. During their first attempt, they reached 7,800 meters, but were stopped by the overwhelming amount of snow. During their second attempt, they reached over 8,350 meters, right after the perilous bottleneck passage and the delicate traverse, but the climbers were once again stopped by deep snow that was above their hips and high avalanche risk. They made the hard decision to climb back down, so close to summit.

For more information (mostly in French) and photos visit louisrousseau.com

Sources:louisrousseau.com and gerfriedgoeschl.at

Date of Ascent: Louis Rousseau and Gerfried Göschl summited Nanga Parbat on July 11 2009, at 11:30 am.

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