Nepal | July 05, 2020

Spanish, French climbers to climb Everest, Manaslu in style

Rajan Pokhrel
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Alex Txikon Carlos Rubio Mount Everest expedition

Alex Txikon (left) and Carlos Rubio all set to head for the Mount Everest expedition, in Kathmandu, on Sunday, December 25, 2016. Photo: THT Online

KATHMANDU: Two Spanish climbers and a French mountaineer are all set to attempt to climb two peaks above 8,000 metres in Nepal in the winter season with an aim to set world records.

According to officials, French woman Revol Elisabeth Marie Bernadette headed to the western region to attempt to climb the Mt Manaslu (8,163 m), the world’s eighth highest peak, yesterday while Spanish mountaineers – Alex Txikon (35) and Carlos Rubio (28) arrived in Kathmandu today to begin their climbing bids on the Mt Everest using the normal route.

Talking to THT Online, Alex said that he along with Carlos would try to climb the world’s highest peak without supplemental oxygen this winter while only Nepali mountaineer Ang Rita Sherpa made it to the top without O2 in 1987.

“It’s my sixth winter expedition without supplemental oxygen,” he shared.

While only 15 successful winter ascents were made on the Mt Everest till date since Polish climber Leszek Cichy first reached the top of the world in February 1979, Alex said that they would try their best to be the first foreign team to climb the Mt Everest in the winter season without using supplemental oxygen.

“I have decided to run this challenging expedition in the winter season to support the country’s tourism sector,” Alex, who has already summitted 11 eight-thousanders so far including Nanga Parbat recently, said, adding that the team would leave for Khumbu region on Wednesday.

Alex said feeling the loneliness of the mountain during the cold season would trigger the adventure to the maximum.

“In contrast, with the overcrowding on the Mt Everest in this high season, the exposition and the little chances of rescuing transform the highest mountain worldwide into the greatest challenge to the Himalaya.”

According to Pemba Sherpa, Manager at Seven Summit Treks, their team will have six Sherpa support staff along with a movie director and a cameraman.

“Other members of the team will assist them up to the Camp I or the Camp II depending on the weather condition,” he said.

Besides the only expedition on the Mt Everest, Revol Elisabeth (37) has been attempting to climb the Mt Manaslu in an alpine style from the normal route, according to Rishi Bhandari, Managing Director at Satori Adventures.

Officials at the Department of Tourism said that Revol-led two-member expedition was the only winter expedition on the Mt Manaslu this year.

“The French woman has a dream to be the first woman to climb the Mt Manaslu in the winter season,” Bhandari said.

“Giambiasi Ludovic Jean will support her bid up to the Camp II, but she is climbing without having the support of climbing guides above the base camp,” he added.

According to him, Revol is one of the experienced and professional climbers who had successfully climbed the Gasherbrum II and the Broad peak in the winter season.

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