Two Big Routes in Nepal

By Dougald MacDonald ,

Seth Hobby and John Kear made the second ascent of 6186-meter Kyajo Ri via a new route and then made a fast, alpine-style ascent of the Northeast Face of 6440-meter Cholatse in Nepal. The two U.S.-based guides first climbed the Southeast Ridge of Kyajo Ri, a peak that was only opened to climbing in 2001. In a 21-hour round trip from their high camp, they climbed the ridge at 5.9 AI3, descended the Southwest Ridge (the peak’s first-ascent route), and then endured a long slog over a high col to return to camp.

Moving to the base of Cholatse, the two men started up a beautiful ice line on the Northeast Face, first climbed by an American expedition in 1984. They climbed the 1800-meter route in three days, with difficulties up to WI5+ M6 and some scary incidents with rockfall. After summiting via the East Ridge, the two rappelled in the dark to their high bivy, and then rappelled the next day to the base. Comment on this story

The Hobby-Kear line on the Northeast Face of Cholatse follows part of the 1984 route, with an independent finish.

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