Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak (8,047 m) 2012/2013

The expedition was organized within the “Polish Winter Himalayan Mountaineering 2010-2015” sport program. All information concerning the program may be found at www.polskihimalaizmzimowy.pl and in particular in “Press Releases” section.

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The last farewell to Maciej Berbeka and Tomek Kowalski

We are saying farewell to the climbers who have died during the descent after conquering Broad Peak in winter for the first time in history.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – 8th March – statement of Krzysztof Wielicki, the leader of the expedition

Considering all the circumstances, conditions, my experience, history of Himalayan mountaineering, knowledge regarding physiology and high-altitude medicine as well as consultations with doctors and co-organizers of the expedition in Poland, I have to declare Maciej Berbeka and Tomasz Kowalski dead.

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Expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 8th March - weather breakdown

There is no new information concerning the two missing climbers.
As it was mentioned before, the weather broke down completely. The sky is fully cloud-covered and there is no visibility.

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Expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – additional information, 7th March, 3:00 PM Polish time

Due to repeated questions concerning GPS localizers and a possibility to use a rescue helicopter, we would like to inform that:

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Expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 7th March, 1:00 PM local time

We would likw to confirm that early in the morning two Pakistani climbers - Amin Ullah and Shaheen Baig - have set off from the base camp towards camp 3 at 7,000 m.

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Expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - information dated 7th March, 12:30 PM local time

There is still no contact with two missing climbers.
Artur Małek and Karim Hayyat reached the base camp.

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All climbers are descending. Bielecki is in the base camp. Fate of Berbeka and Kowalski is unknown.

6th March at 9:30 PM Adam Bielecki, Amin Ullah and Shaheen Baig have reached the base camp. Artur Małek and Karim Hayyat started to descend in the evening from camp 4 at 7,600 m as ordered by the leader. They are below camp 3 at 7,000 m.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – 6th March, 8:00 PM local time, 4:00 PM Polish time

Today, i.e. 6th March, more information has reached us from Krzysztof Wielicki, the leader of the expedition, and we may organized the events from the last twenty-four hours.

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Broad Peak – we do not lose hope

All the time we are awaiting the news from Karakoram. Since the morning we have not had any contact with two missing climbers: Maciej Berbeka and Tomasz Kowalski, who spent a night at the pass at 7,900 m.

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PZA winter expedition to Broad Peak - 2.00 o'clock local time, March 6.

Artur Małek and Adam Bielecki are in camp IV at an altitude of 7400m. Tomasz Kowalski and Maciej Berbeka bivouacking on the pass 7900m. Karim Hayyat in camp II. From basecamp go up Shaheen and Amin Ullah Baig. Their task will be to reach out to descend and help in their descent to basecamp or liquidation of camps.

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The summit has been conquered!!!!

Between 5:30 and 6:00 PM local time all four climbers of the assault team: Maciej Berbeka, Adam Bielecki, Tomasz Kowalski and Artur Małek made the first winter ascent of Broad Peak 8,027 m.

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Broad Peak - the newest information

At 1:30 PM Polish time on 5th March there is no new information. There is no contact with the base camp. We may only wonder and believe that the action continues and we cannot interrupt it (e.g. a race against darkness) with even a short radio contact.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – 12:30 PM (local time) – The attack is on!

At 12:30 PM local time Maciej Berbeka and Adam Bielecki reached the pass at 7,900 m.
Artur Małek and Tomasz Kowalski reached the pass. There are still 1.5-2.5 hours of climbing to the summit, depending on the conditions.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – the final summit attempt is on

A four-person assault team consisting in Maciej Berbeka, Adam Bielecki, Artur Małek and Tomasz Kowalski has set off from the assault camp at 7,400 m at 5:15 AM local time on 5th March. At 11:00 AM the team has passed the second difficult crevasse at 7,850 m that has been an obstacle on their way to a pass at 7,900 m and the summit.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – the second day of summit attempt

It is the second day of the summit attempt of the winter expedition to Broad Peak 8,027 m in Karakoram, Pakistani. After a night spent in camp 2 at 6,200 m Artur Małek, Tomasz Kowalski, Maciej Berbeka and Adam Bielecki reached camp 4 at 7,400 m and will spend a night there. Tonight they are going to attempt the summit.

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Especially for FAKTY TVN - right before the summit attempt of Broad Peak

All four of them are going to set off - Krzysztof Wielicki, the leader, told Fakty TVN

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – when will they set off?

The expedition has entered its most difficult stage, i.e. making a crucial tactical decision. The next attack is probably going to be their last chance. Tomorrow’s dilemma (2nd March) reminds us of Shakespeare:

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - still waiting in the base camp

Today, 1st March, no one has set off from the base camp. As you may see on the below photo, all our energy is consumed by analyzing weather forecasts that make us wait. A weather gap is supposed to appear on 5th March.

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The film of the last days

Take a look!

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – waiting for a miracle

It has been the 9th day since we came back from our failed summit attempt. It is just another day that does not differ from others. The daily rhythm is set by meal times bar breakfast as participants arrive to have it between 7:00 AM and noon. Breakfast is also the least creative meal prepared by our cook. Nine out of ten breakfasts consist in omelets and bread. Fortunately, lunches and dinners are still surprising in a positive way. One of our entertainments is still a way to our “Internet café” to check the mail and weather forecasts.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – 4th March: chance for a summit attempt

Something has changed in weather forecasts. There is a chance for an attack on 4th-6th March. Climbers should set off from the base camp on 1st or 2nd March. We hope that the forecast will not change.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak waits for weaker wind

Weather forecasts do not allow for an attack prior to at least 11th March. Average wind speed at 8,000 m is 100 km/h. Long days in the base camp are coming and we try to entertain ourselves while waiting for improvements in weather conditions. Generally we read books, play chess and discuss various matters. Our library is quite interesting: there is a Lonely Planet guidebook about Pakistan, several books about mountains, interviews, novels, such jewels like “The Three Musketeers” and a Norwegian crime story about making a snowman – “The Snowman”. Soon we are going to start to play a game called “what photo is on page number X in the last issue of ‘GÓRY’ magazine”.

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19.02 - relation of the attack by Tomasz Kowalski

The weather forecast mentions two possible days of good weather. We do not need more. The leader divided us into two teams. The first team consists in Adam and Artur, who are going to be supported with HAPs and another team consists in me and Maciej accompanied by Karim. The weather forecast mentions an almost windless 17th February and sunny but windy 18th February. Thus, both teams have a chance to attempt the summit.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 18th February - the attack, the attack ... and it's over

Maciej Berbeka and Tomasz Kowalski have left the assault camp at 7,400 m today at 5:00 AM. At 10:00 AM due to increasing wind they decided to terminate the attack and retreat. There is a claud - altocumulus lenticularis - over the summit that forecasts a change in weather conditions.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 17th February, 8:00 PM - the attack continues

Adam Bielecki and Artur Małek failed to pass a crack at 7,820 and returned to C3. They are going to spend a night 17th/18th February in C3. Maciej Berbeka and Tomasz Kowalski, who have been approaching today from camp 2, have passed camp 3 and put up an assault tent at 7,400 m, in which they are going to spend a night.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 16th February - the second day of the attack

Adam Bielecki and Artur Małek have reached C3 and are going to spend a night there. Maciej Berbeka, Tomasz Kowalski and Karim are in C2 and are going to spend a night there. Amin and Shahin set off for a reconnaissance above C3 and at the moment are coming back, but is still is not known where they will spend a night - whether it is going to be C3 or a lower camp.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - set off from the base camp in order to attempt the summit!

Watch today's film depicting the set off from the base camp of the first assault team that plans to summit Broad Peak in winter.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - THE ATTEMPT HAS BEGUN !!!

In the morning on 15th February Adam Bielecki and Artur Małek set off from the base camp to attempt the summit. Amin and Shaheen support them on their way to camp 2. Weather forecast is far from being ideal, but the team plans to be on top on 18th February.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - topo of the route to the summit

Ice Warriors purposelessly remain in the base camp. They play chess and check the weather forecasts. The break is going to last a couple of days. In the meantime, you may have a look a topography of the route to the summit.

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Audio-video relationship of 02/13/2013

Take a look at fakty.tvn24

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – a FILM depicting establishing camp and T. Kowalski’s report

After several days of resting, during which winter in Karakoram has shown us that the situation is not that rosy and blown away our sanitary tents, we are going upwards. It is supposed to be the last ascent before the summit attempt. The plan is simple: a night in camp 2, then another day and transporting a deposit with Amin to camp 3, a night at 7,000 m, a short trip up and a return to the base camp. On 6th February, me, Artur and Amin went to camp 2.

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Leader’s report of 6th-9th February 2013 – recent days’ story

When from the site of camp 2 Amin was giving signs to Artur and Tomasz that the camp ceased to exist, it did not mean anything good. They could not do anything, but to descend to camp 1 as it was getting late. Our position had to be regained at once.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – all climbers are in the base camp

Having established camp 3 at 7,000 m and spent a night from 8th to 9th February there, Adam, Artur, Maciej and Tomasz went to the base camp. Similarly, Krzysztof and Karim who spent a night in camp 2 descended to the base camp. There are snowstorms, the wind is blowing with approx. 50 km/h and the visibility is very poor.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – camp 3 has been established at 7000m

On 8th February Maciej Berbeka, Adam Bielecki, Tomasz Kowalski and Artur Małek after one day of climbing from camp 2 reached 7,000 m, where among the ruins of the so-called "Korean camp" they established camp 3 and were going to spend a night there.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak lost camp 2

On 6th February Kowalski, Małek and Amin reached the site of camp 2 in the afternoon. Unfortunately, they did not find the tent. Together with all the expedition’s equipment that partly consisted in personal belongings, gas, cooking ovens and food, the tent was completely blown away by wind. On 4th-5th February the wind was blowing with up to 100 km/h at this altitude. A well-fixed tent should have survived.

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6th February 2013 - the action has been renewed

Today the wind is supposed to be weaker. We do believe in weather forecasts. A three-people team left the base camp in order to reach camp 2 today and secure the route up to camp 3 with ropes tomorrow. The team consists in Artur Małek, Tomasz Kowalski and Amin Ullah Baig.

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Relationship film from the expedition to Broad Peak 30.01-4.02. 2013.

We invite you to watch the movie!

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Audio-video relationship of 02/05/2013

Take a look at fakty.tvn24

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – the fun is over – Tomasz Kowalski writes about gear

The expedition reached 6,550 m and the fun was over; it gets more and more serious with every meter. The period without wind is also over. The participants are going to spend at least two days in the base camp and then, they are going to try to establish camp 3 at 7,000 m. Forecasted weather gap for 7th February at 8,000 m seems less probable every day and the weather forecasts are getting worse. Typical winter in Karakorum. Tomek fought the first attack of boredom with writing about gear and food:

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – 3rd February – all climbers are in the base camp

On 3rd February, having spent a night in camp 2, the Pakistani: Amin and Karim, left the ropes at the end of the fixed line at 6,550 m and then, due to strong wind, started to descend to the base camp. Shaheen felt unwell and consequently, started going down already from camp 2. Krzysztof Wielicki accompanied him.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - fixing the ropes above camp 2

On 2nd February four from two: Adam, Maciej, Tomasz and Artur have been fixing the ropes above camp 2. Before 1:00 PM they managed to fix the ropes up to 6,550 m according to altimeter and to 6,400 m accordint to spot measurements; then, they started to descend to the base camp.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 1st February

Four climbers, Artur Małek, Tomasz Kowalski, Maciej Berbeka and Adam Bielecki are currently in camp 2 and all of them plan to spend a night there. Today, Tomasz and Artur have been preoccupied with moving camp 2.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 31st January

Tomasz Kowalski and Artur Małek after approx. 9 hours of climbing reached camp 2 at 6,200 m and were going to spend a night there.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 27th/28th January, a film

Enjoy watching a short film depicting Artur Małek and Tomasz Kowalski on 27th-28th January 2013 setting off and fixing the ropes above camp 1 up to 5,900 m.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - camp 2 has been established at 6,200 m

On 30th January in the morning, Amin Ullah Baig and Shaheen Baig set off from the base camp and after four hours of fast climbing they reached camp 1, from where they took the ropes, and climbed further.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - 29th January 2013

Having spent a night in camp 1, Adam Bielecki and Maciej Berbeka had to change their plans.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - going towards camp 2

At night on 27th January a team consisting in Małek and Kowalski set off towards camp 2. Artur and Tomasz fixed 450 m of ropes up to 5,900 m and at 2:30 PM they started to descend to the base camp, which they reached after dark.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - a film showing reaching the base camp

Enjoy!

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We have photos from today's visit in camp 1

In the place of camp 1 at 5,600 m; from the left: Shaheen Baig, Artur Małek, Tomasz Kowalski.

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Winter expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak – camp 1 has been established

On 27th January 2013 a team consisting in Artur Małek, Tomasz Kowalski, Shaheen Baig and Amin Ullah Baig reached 5,600 m and established camp 1. Having built a platform and put up a tent, Shaheen and Amin started to descend to the base camp, whereas Tomasz and Artur were going to spend a night in the camp.

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Expedition of Polish Mountaineering Association to Broad Peak - sick Wielicki draws on reserve - action has started

POn 23rd January they reached the base camp and already on 25th January the action has started. Weather forecasts are exceptionally favourable till 5th February. It is clear and up to 7,000 m there is almost no wind. Such an opportunity cannot be missed - in Himalayan mountaineering, like in any other discipline, missed opportunities tent to come back and haunt us.

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Baza pod Broad Peakiem - 24.01.2013

Po 6 dniach trekkingu dotarliśmy do bazy pod Broad Peakiem. Pogoda jest dla nas na razie łaskawa.

Ze Skardu , mimo obaw i złych wspomnień z poprzedniego roku, dotarliśmy szybko jeepami do Askole bez żadnych problemów.

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Zimowa wyprawa PZA na Broad Peak - baza osiągnięta

23 stycznia w godzinach południowych czasu lokalnego zimowa wyprawa Polskiego Związku Alpinizmu na Broad Peak 8047 m, po 6 dniach marszu lodowcem Baltoro, dotarła do bazy ekspedycji. Baza usytuowana jest na wysokości 4900 m, na lodowcu Godwin Austen pod zachodnią ścianą Broad Peaka.

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Wyprawa zimowa PZA na Broad Peak - w Urdukas

Noc z 20 na 21 stycznia wyprawa spędziła na biwaku o nazwie Urdukas na lodowcu Baltoro, na wysokości 4000 m, na przeciw ścian grupy Trango 6286 m.

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Zimowa wyprawa PZA na Broad Peak 2012/13 - Skardu

Dotarliśmy do Skardu 15 stycznia. Po 12 dniach przerwy tutejsze lotnisko w końcu zaczęło działać. Całe szczęście, bo drogi do Skardu dalej są nieprzejezdne. Szczęśliwie dla nas mrozy zelżały i teraz pogoda jest dobra - świeci słońce i jest tylko kilka stopni poniżej zera.

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Zimowa wyprawa na Broad Peak - północny Pakistan sparaliżowany falą mrozów

Północne rejony Pakistanu zostały sparaliżowane silnym atakiem zimy - przede wszystkim mrozów. W Skardu,, które leży na wysokości zaledwie 2200 metrów temperatura spadła do minus 27 stopni Celsjusza.

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Zimowa wyprawa PZA na Broad Peak - w drodze

Osiągnięcie miejscowości Askole w północno-wschodnim Pakistanie, skąd rozpocznie się już tylko piesza karawana do bazy planowane jest na 15 stycznia.

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Zimowa wyprawa PZA na Broad Peak - ogłoszono skład ekspedycji

W dniu 21.12.2012 podczas konferencji prasowej w Centrum Olimpijskim w Warszawie ogłoszono skład uczestników wyprawy, która będzie atakować tej zimy Broad Peak 8047 m.

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Konferencja prasowa Zimowej Wyprawy na Broad Peak (8047m)

Polski Związek Alpinizmu oraz uczestnicy Zimowej Wyprawy na Broad Peak (8048) 2012/2013 zapraszają na przedwyprawową konferencję prasową, która rozpocznie się 21 grudnia 2012...

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Broad Peak wyprawa zimowa 2012/2013 - trwają przygotowania

Trwają przygotowania do wyjazdu zimowej wyprawy na Broad Peak. Dopinany jest skład, finalizowane są sprawy organizacyjne. Kierownikiem wyprawy jest Krzysztof Wielicki. W wyprawie ma uczestniczyć w sumie 5-6 osób.

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