Three Iranian mountain climbers have gone missing while descending Broad Peak (BP), 26,400 ft (8,047 mts) in northern Pakistan and chances of their survival are slim, official sources said today.
The missing climbers were identified as Aidin Bozorgi, Mojtaba Jarrahi and Pouya Keyvan.
They were stuck at 25,590 ft (7,800 mts) last Wednesday while descending the world’s 12th highest mountain in the Karakoram area of Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan region, Mr Abu Zafar Sadiq, Secretary, Alpine Club of Pakistan (ACP) told The Outdoor Journal on Monday.
Broad Peak is located approximately five miles from K2 along the Baltoro glacier. It got its name as the summit is over a mile long. The stranded mountaineers contacted the local authorities for help via satellite phone and rescue teams were sent but no one could be traced due to bad weather. Contact with the three climbers was lost on Saturday and since then all efforts to locate them have failed, the ACP said.
The Iranians, led by Mr Bozorgi, left the Base Camp on July 13 and made an attempt to scale the peak from a different route on the south-west side of Broad Peak. The West Ridge route is considered the ‘normal’ route to attempt this mountain.
BP is often considered ‘easy’ to climb in the sense that there is almost no technical climbing (e.g. vertical walls). However, there is always a danger of an avalanche, plus the biggest challenge is that Broad Peak actually has three summits. Many climbers who claim they have summitted BP have actually only attained the fore-summit. It is another hour, more or less, across a clean ridge that allows climbers to claim the true summit.
Climbers have died near the summit from dehydration and exhaustion, while others have fallen into crevasses and not been rescued.
The ACP confirmed that the three Iranians accomplished their mission when they reached the peak three days later. More than 359 people have successfully ascended Broad Peak since the first summit and at least 19 have died in the process.
This was the third tragic incident involving trekkers in Pakistan in recent times.
Last month, militants in security forces’ uniform attacked a team of foreign climbers and shot dead 10 of them at the Nanga Parbat Base Camp. Last week, a German climber went missing but her body was retrieved later on.
Austrian climbers Marcus Schmuck and Fritz Wintersteller made the first summit of Broad Peak on June 9, 1957. They managed the feat in 53 hours after more than 13 hours of trail breaking from Camp 3 sans oxygen masks, high altitude porters and without Base Camp support.
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