Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Report from the Himalaya

As i'm sure you've noticed if you've been reading this blog for a while, we here at Joe Browns love going away. We love talking about going away, and love playing with the kit while we're there. A second best is hearing about our customers going to far off and exciting places, scaling mighty walls and mountains and playing with those toys they got from us before. For most, this is taking a new pair of walking boots round the Lake District, or a pair of axes to Scotland for the winter, but Sergio Zigliotto has taken it one step further. Well, maybe more than just the one step...

The image on the left shows Sergio sporting one of the Mountain Equipment Redline Down Suits we were selling last year, atop the summit of "the mighty Putha Hiunchuli (also named Dhaulagiri VII) of 7246 meters, in the wonderful region of Dolpo". We received this photo one day from a very happy Italian, and asked him for some more info:

"I went to Nepal with a German Agency called Amical Alpin and together with other 12 mountaineers" he explained, at around late-September to late-October. This is often classed as the best time to visit the area, as the monsoon rains have stopped and the temperatures are at their best. Still, with temperatures dropping to "-27°C and a strong wind" it's still no piece of cake!

"This area is still remote and there are just a few trekkers going there.
We had to take 2 domestic flights to arrive to Juphal, where the trekking to
starts. It takes 8 days then to arrive to base camp at 4950 meters."

Sergio explained to me that he had been through some fantastic places and unique villages, "where people still live in a quiet way and "far from the madding crowd"." where the locals were of Tibetan ancestry, and keen to keep hold of their heritage and traditions. As almost everyone i've spoken to who has visited the area, Sergio had only nice things to say for the people, saying they were, "Really nice and interesting".

"After we arrived at BC, we started the acclimatization period, by fixing the high camps and coming back to BC many times" Sergio explains, "We fixed C1 at 5450 mtrs, C2 at 6200
mtrs and C3 at 6550 mtrs"

But it seems Sergio and his team were now on a bit of a race against time, as a cold front was blowing in, with a now or never attitude adopted. "With a temperature of -27°C and a strong wind we climbed the West Ridge up to the summit, where just the 6 of us arrived at 9.30 am. Thanks to my ME Redline down suit, I [did not have] any freezing problems and enjoyed the view from the summit for half an hour time." A snow storm arrived during their descent, complicating matters slightly, but all parties arrived safe and sound back at Camp 1.

Sergio explained how it was a phenomenal trip and a "a fantastic adventure in the high altitude and in remote areas, where it is still possible to find a true wilderness and lonely places." making us slightly jealous here at Joe Browns. Still, the photos have been flying round the staff since we received his e-mail, and it's been fantastic to know we were able to be (albeit a small) part of his amazing trip. Congratulations go out to all involved in their expedition, for their success and safe return, and we hope to hear from him again soon.

If you've been somewhere exciting with something from here and wish to share it with us, please feel free to e-mail us at mail@joe-brown.com and we'll put a brief trip report on here to share with our other customers, followers and friends.

No comments: