Polish ski mountaineer Andrzej Bargiel has successfully summited Gasherbrum II, the 13th-highest mountain in the world, before returning to base camp on skis without supplemental oxygen. Bargiel began his ascent to the 26,362 ft (8,035-meter) peak on the Pakistan-China border on Tuesday evening and reached the summit at 4:00 am Polish time on Wednesday (7 pm Tuesday PST).
This achievement is part of Bargiel’s ambitious project called “Hic Sunt Leones,” meaning “Here are lions” in Latin. The project aims to ski down the highest peaks in the world, showcasing the possibility of skiing in some of the most challenging and unexplored territories on the planet.
Bargiel has already accomplished remarkable feats in his ski mountaineering career. In 2013, he became the first person to ski down Shishapangma, the 14th-highest mountain in the world, located in China. He has also conquered and skied down other Himalayan eight-thousanders, including Manaslu and K2.
The Polish adventurer made history in 2018 when he became the first person to ski from the summit of K2, the world’s second-tallest peak. Despite facing adverse weather conditions, Bargiel has also attempted to summit and ski Mount Everest on two occasions.
While footage of Bargiel skiing from the summit of Gasherbrum II is not yet available, it is anticipated that the clips will be released soon. Bargiel’s remarkable accomplishments continue to inspire and push the boundaries of ski mountaineering.
After successfully descending from Gasherbrum II, Bargiel is now setting his sights on another challenging peak in the Karakoram mountain range, Gasherbrum I, which stands at 26,509 ft (8,080m). Accompanying him on this expedition are mountaineer Janusz Gołąb, photographer Bartek Pawlikowski, and cameraman Maciej Sulima.
Gasherbrum II, the 13th-highest mountain in the world, is located on the Pakistan-China border in the Karakoram mountain range. Here are some fascinating facts about this majestic peak:
1. Standing at an impressive height of 8,035 meters (26,362 feet), Gasherbrum II is known for its challenging and technical climbing routes, attracting experienced mountaineers from around the globe.
2. The name “Gasherbrum” translates to “beautiful mountain” in the local Balti language, a fitting description for this stunning peak.
3. Gasherbrum II is part of the “eight-thousanders” club, referring to the 14 mountains on Earth that exceed 8,000 meters in height.
4. The mountain was first successfully summited in 1956 by an Austrian expedition led by Fritz Moravec, making it one of the earlier conquests in the Karakoram range.
5. Gasherbrum II is known for its steep and icy slopes, making it a challenging endeavor for climbers and ski mountaineers alike.
6. The peak offers breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding Karakoram Range, including neighboring giants like K2 and Broad Peak.
7. Despite its formidable nature, Gasherbrum II has seen several successful ski descents, showcasing the skill and audacity of ski mountaineers who dare to tackle its slopes.
8. The mountain is also an important part of local culture and folklore, with various legends and stories associated with its majestic presence.
9. Gasherbrum II is a popular destination for mountaineering expeditions, drawing adventurers seeking to test their skills and endurance in one of the world’s most challenging environments.
10. The region around Gasherbrum II offers a unique and awe-inspiring landscape, with vast glaciers, towering peaks, and a sense of untouched wilderness that captures the imagination of all who visit.