The world's eight-thousanders are seething. The reason for this is the record hunt by Norwegian Kristin Harila. She is trying to climb the 14 highest mountains in less than six months. Currently it even looks like after three months.
The German extreme mountaineer and mountain guide Luis Stitzinger has had an accident on Kangchenjunga. The 54-year-old had reached the summit of the third highest mountain in the world last Thursday afternoon and sent a last radio message around 21 p.m. - he has been missing since then.
With the establishment of mountain tourism on most of the eight-thousanders and all of the Seven Summits plus a few other mountains, the required alpinistic skills have been reduced to almost zero. By alpine skills I mean independent climbing, acting and making decisions on the mountain. Everything that used to be required on these mountains has now largely become superfluous thanks to the technical infrastructure on the mountain. It is enough if you learn to walk with crampons in the base camp and to attach yourself correctly to the fixed rope.
Kristin Harila has climbed her 14th eight-thousander with Cho Oyu in Tibet. With a time of one year and five days, the Norwegian is currently the fastest woman on the highest mountains in the world. Depending on the interpretation, she even beats record holder Nirmal Purja.
Norway's Kristin Harila came close to beating Nirmal Purja's record time for climbing all 14 eight-thousanders. Only two peaks were missing. However, since the Chinese authorities refused her permits for Cho Oyu and Shishapangma, her record hunt is over at this point.
The French mountain guide and professional alpinist Benjamin Védrines has set a new speed record on Broad Peak: in just seven hours and 28 minutes he reached the summit of the 8051 meter high mountain from the Godwin-Austen Glacier.
Last Thursday, the Nepalese mountaineer Sanu Sherpa reached his goal of climbing all eight-thousanders in the world twice with the Gasherbrum II in Pakistan. He is the first alpinist who has managed to do this so far.
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