Video by Philippe Gatta - When you trek in the Khumbu region of Nepal, you are surrounded by hundreds of peaks… but one of them always catches the attention more than the others: Ama Dablam. Despite its modest elevation – 22,349 feet, compared to its giant neighbors such as Mt. Everest or Lhotse – Ama Dablam has a unique and beautiful shape that attracts climbers from all over the world.
The first ascent was made by Mike Gill, Barry Bishop, Mike Ward, and Wally Romanes in 1961 via the Southwest Ridge (VI 5.9 60°, 1,500 m). Over time, this route has become very popular, especially in October and November, but it is still possible to find fewer than 10 climbers in spring, as Philippe Gatta and Jean-Marc Wojcik experienced. The two French climbers made a fast expedition – a 16-day round trip from Katmandu. Without Sherpa support and in rather unstable weather, they climbed the Southwest Ridge, establishing only two high camps.
Finally Philippe summitted alone, after his friend Jean-Marc turned back. Find more info about the route and photos at Philippe's website: http://www.philippegatta.fr/amadablam2.htm