ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Ali Sadpara successfully tops the world’s second highest mountain, the 8,611-metre K2. Sadpara and Icelandic mountaineer John Snorri announced the K2 Winter Expedition 2021, with their bid in January failing due to bad weather.
Pakistan’s Muhammad Ali Sadpara has emerged triumphant in the K2 Winter Expedition 2021 that he had announced alongside Icelandic mountaineer John Snorri weeks after their failed first attempt.
Sadpara and his team, including Snorri, successfully climbed the 8,611-metre K2, the world’s second highest mountain, after departing for their journey in the wee hours of Wednesday, a day after his birthday.
At the time of his departure, he had asked fans and admirers to “keep us in your prayers”. He has since been providing updates on his Twitter account whenever the WiFi signals work.
Sadpara, John Snorri from Iceland and MP Mohr from Chile have not been contacted since the three began their push for the K2 summit from camp 3 at midnight between Thursday and Friday, according to their team.
Several experts, including four local high altitude climbers, Fazal Ali and Jalal from Shimshal, Imtiaz Hussain and Akbar Ali from Skardu, Chhang Dawa Sherpa and other members of the SST winter expedition team, are part of the rescue mission.
Two army helicopters flew to their maximum limit of 7,800 metres for a second time and conducted aerial reconnaissance for an hour to locate the missing climbers. The search team traced the Abruzzi and other routes but did not see any signs of the mountaineers, according to Chhang Dawa Sherpa.
Sherpa said the operation was not successful due to cloudy conditions and strong winds, and was temporarily suspended.
Talking to media in Skardu, Sajid Sadpara, the son of Ali Sadpara who was also part of the expedition but had to abandon due to equipment issues, said the three climbers probably met an accident while on their way back after climbing the K2. He said the trio had already climbed 8,200m when he broke away from them.
Sajid said the chances of surviving the extremely cold weather after remaining missing for three days and without proper gear were “very low”, adding that an operation could be conducted to retrieve the bodies.
“We had started our push for the K2 summit on February 5 at 12am. I, my father Ali Sadpara, John Snorri and MP Mohr were at the bottleneck, while other climbers had descended,” Sajid said, adding that he decided to descend to camp 3 from an altitude of 8,200m after the oxygen regulator he was using leaked.