K2 WINTER POLISH EXPEDITION
26 January, 2003
DENIS URUBKO, VASSILIY PIVTSOW AND ILIAS TUKHVATULLIN, WHO HAD REACHED 6600 M AND ESTABLISHED A TENT ON THE RIDGE OF K2'S NORTHERN PILLAR, HAVE SPENT A DIFFICULT NIGHT IN IT. DENIS AND VASSILIY HAVE NOT TAKEN ALONG THEIR DOWN TROUSERS. ONLY ILIAS HAD A DOWN SUIT. THEY HAVE PUT THEIR LEGS AND ARMS INTO THE ONLY SLEEPING BAG THEY HAVE TAKEN ALONG, SEEKING SHELTER FROM FROSTBITE.
One can only speculate about the conditions on the slope. The wind tears at the tents so strongly that after leaving mine for a second, I found the computer equipment and the satellite phone swept off the table and scattered on the ground when coming back. The only benefit from that is the clean energy. Bogdan Jankowski, the radio and electronic engineer, has installed a fan generating electricity and charging the batteries.
We have a weather forecast at last. We owe that kind of disinterested help to our friends from Pakistan. Thanks to the alpinist Nazir Sabirow, who has already reached the K2 summit marking a new route with a Japanese, as well as Muhammad Hanif, a senior Pakistani meteorologist, we began receiving weather announcements. This gesture has made a deep impression on us not only because it was accompanied by best wishes of success, but also because all the attempts at cooperating with western weather services have failed so far due to exorbitant prices or other forms of repaying debts that have been incurred in such a way. The next forecasts are not very good. It is common knowledge that with a temperature of minus 20 deg. C at the base, there are minus 50 degrees at the summit of K2.
Nevertheless, nobody thinks of retreating. The struggle for conquering the mountain continues.
Monika Rogozinska "Rzeczpospolita" from the base under K2.
(Polish - English translation: "Scrivanek")