October 2, 2012

Kokshall Too 2012 - We're Back!

Hi All! We just made it back to Bishkek after 25 days in the Western Kokshall Too. We didn't complete our primary objective, a new line on Kizil Asker, but put in a strong attempt hampered by storm. We did complete a  new route on the Ochre walls we called Mr. Casual (IV AI5 600m) as it was relatively casual compared to other objectives of interest, took much video, and I am in process completing two new art pieces - One, an overview of the Western Kokshall Too from the Kormorova Glacier, the second a detail of the 1500m Southeast face of Kizil Asker. 



Painting in the Western Kokshall Too

2m new snow hampered our move to ABC for Kizil Asker. Eventually we got there and put in a strong attempt, climbing fast on day 1 only to get shut down, pummeled and buried at 5300m by another foot of new while on route. All in all a really cool trip, We were sad not send but such is the nature of alpine climbing. Things have to come together - you can't climb through heavy powder avalanches...and hope to survive.



Photo credit - Unknown

Kizil Asker - High point indicated. Avalanches pummeled us at our bivy for approximately 20 hours before we were able to take advantage of a temporary lull to retreat. While on rappel we were hit with spindrift avalanches as well as heavy powder avalanches containing dense debris.


Ochre Walls - Routelines indicated (Click for HiRes)


Ryan and I are happy to have survived  the storm and we got a lot of great video. We are looking forward to getting a chance to sit down and start editing. 

All the best, 

Sam

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