New route on Cho Oyu from Nepal
Corona necessity is the mother of invention. “These days, many climbers are free, so we can use good and experienced climbers to find the route,” Maya Sherpa writes to Stefan Nestler. NMA Vice President,Maya, means a new route on the Nepalese south side of the eight-thousander Cho Oyu. One that is suitable not only for top climbers but also for commercial expeditions. Maya Sherpa has already scaled four eight-thousanders: Mount Everest (a total of three times, both from Tibet and Nepal), K2, and Cho Oyu.
Up to now, expedition operators have only offered ascents on the normal route in Tibet via the northwest ridge of the mountain– the technically relatively easy route to the summit at 8,188 meters.
However, in recent years the Chinese-Tibetan authorities had drastically tightened the price screw for Cho Oyu and issued permits rather restrictively.
The Nepalese south side of Cho Oyu is considered technically challenging and at risk of avalanches. The first ascent via this side of the mountain was achieved in fall 1978 by the two Austrians Eduard Koblmüller and Alois Furtnera along with Pasang Dawa Lama, who climbed the Southeast ridge. Until today this route has never been repeated. The last successful ascent of Cho Oyu from Nepal was made eleven years ago: In spring 2009, the two Kazakhs Denis Urubko and Boris Dedeshko opened a new route through the South Face.
For clients of commercial expeditions, all routes on the south side that have been opened so far are too dangerous and challenging. “That’s why we are trying to find possible and safe routes,” says Maya Sherpa, they still need funds. The Nepalese Ministry of Tourism has signalled the government’s support. The team will probably consist of eight international mountain guides and ten experienced Sherpas, says Maya, who herself wants to be part of the team: “If everything is going well, we will start moving in the first week of September.”
Source: Stefan Nestler