Tirich Mir PeakTirich Mir 7,708m /Dir Gol Zom
Despite 2000 being the 50th anniversary of the first ascent of Tirich Mir, the highest peak in the Hindu Kush, no expeditions attempted this 7,708m giant. Its ascent by Arne Naess's Norwegian team was rather overshadowed by the first ascent of Annapurna earlier the same year, yet prior to 1950 the only summits higher than Tirich Mir to have been successfully reached by climbers were Kamet and Nanda Devi. However, last July there was a anniversary reunion in the Hurrungane region of Norway and unlike members of the Annapurna team, almost all of whom are now no longer with us, each of the four summiteers (Per Kvernberg, solo, followed a day later by Henry Berg, Naess and Tony Streather) was happily able to turn up for the celebrations.
There was one expedition on the flanks of Tirich Mir; Hidehiro Minami's mature five-person Japanese expedition. Three members, including the leader, were successful on Dir Gol Zom. This shapely 6,778m peak rises only short distance from the Upper Tirich Glacier and although not often climbed as an end in itself, is sometimes snatched via an ascent of its straightforward East Ridge by expeditions attempting Tirich Mir's North Side Normal Route. The first ascent was made in July 1968 by eight members of Ivan Galfy's Slovakian team, which went on to make the first ascent of Tirich Mir's North West Ridge. They were followed just one month later by the three-man team of Diemberger (Austria), Kondo (Japan) and Proske (Germany).
Noshaq Peak Noshaq Peak 7492m
In 2005 a Norwegian Noshaq Peak Expedition from 18 June till 22 July, 2005 led by Mr. Glenn Saljasen with two other friends try their luck on Noshaq Peak. The expedition was delay in getting Peak Permit like all expedition in 2005 this was due to heavy load of mountaineering expedition and clearance problem by the government of Pakistan. With two days of delay in Rawalpindi / Islamabad the expedition were set-off for Chitral, reach until Dir by van and shift into jeeps for Chitral and further to Shogram due to bad road condition.
Expedition result was unsuccessful due to less days for climbing and also weather and fewer information on the high camps.
In June and July of 2000, Jamie McGuinness (New Zealand), Murray Macpherson (Canada) and Martin Nielson (Denmark) from a five member multi-national team made what is probably the first serious attempt on Noshaq since 1978.
At 7,492m Noshaq, which lies on the Pakistan / Afghan border north of Tirich Mir, is both the second highest mountain in the Hindu Kush and the highest peak in Afghanistan. The Normal Route climbs the long and gentle West Ridge, which, were it not for the fact that it lies entirely in Afghanistan, would now almost certainly be one of the most popular objectives for commercially organized expeditions aiming to climb a high but non-technical peak. Up to its last ascent in 1998, before the Russian invasion the following year, Noshaq had been climbed around 32 times and was the first 7,000m peak to receive a winter ascent.
The first ascent took place in 1960 when a Japanese expedition made a surprisingly circuitous ascent from Afghanistan, reaching a pass to the southwest of the mountain and between it and Aspe Safed, then continued up to meet the South Ridge leading towards Noshaq's 7,250m West Summit. From high on this ridge Goro Iwatsubo and Toshiaki Sakai slanted right across a large snowfield to reach the Main Summit directly.
In July 1971, Wolfgang Stefan's Austrian expedition climbed the South Ridge from Pakistan's Upper Tirich Glacier and this was more or less the same route attempted by last year's multi-national team. The three climbers first followed a medial moraine between two unstable ice falls, and then climbed scree slopes to reach a rib on the South East Flank of the South Ridge. Camp 1 was placed on the rib at 5,850m and Camp 2 close to the crest of the South Ridge at 6,450m. There the three had a lucky escape. They decided to position their camp in the lee of a large serac but during the night the region experienced a significant earthquake (a common occurrence in this part of the Hindu Kush and subsequently found to register 5+ on the Richter Scale). It was possibly the same earthquake that cracked buildings as far away from the epicentre as Srinagar and killed at least two people in Peshawar when a house collapsed. The next morning the serac was discovered to have several large and ominous cracks. The tents were hurriedly moved and during the following day the serac collapsed. The three climbers continued up the South Ridge to approximately 6,500m but a combination of altitude and the apparent length and difficulty of the mixed section above led to a retreat.
Istor o Nal PeakIstor-O-Nal North East 7,276m
During July and August 10 members of the Neuchatel section of the Swiss Alpine Club, including five professional guides and two climbers who in 1990 made the first ascent of the difficult 7,200m Hispar peak, Bularung Sar, made a spirited attempt on the unclimbed 7,276m North East Summit of Istor-O- Nal. The only previously known attempt on this peak occurred in 1977, when Japanese climbers approached from the 'South Atrak Glacier' to the north but failed at 6,500m due to technically difficult rock and ice formations. The Swiss, led by Simon Perritaz, also attempted the peak from the north, noting that local people refer to the glacier as South Udren and that the Japanese error in naming it Atrak has been perpetuated by all subsequent mountaineering maps.
The Swiss established Base Camp on the glacier at c4,700m and Camp 1 on the upper section of the glacier some five kilometres distant. Above, the Japanese had climbed an easy but dangerous couloirs to a col on the North Ridge behind a subsidiary summit of 6,241m. The Swiss chose the objectively safer but steeper West Rib of Pt 6,241m and after fixing 1,200m of rope, established Camp 2 below this summit. They then rappelled 70m into the upper section of the Japanese Couloirs and followed it to the col at 6,000m.
The ridge above proved narrow and difficult, with steep rock towers, ice walls and large cornices. The expedition fixed a further 500m of rope and placed Camp 3 at 6,300m, above which the difficulties began to ease. Camp 4 (6,800m) was established on the 19th August. However, on the previous day a huge rock fall cut the fixed ropes on the rib below Camp 2, leaving Antoine Brenzikofer, Christian Meillard, Yan Smith and Jean-Micheal Zweiacker the only climbers at Camp 3. With no hope of more supplies from below, these four decided to try a summit dash from Camp 4 on the 21st. The temperature that morning was -30øC as the four left the tent and climbed a couloirs to the summit slopes. Unfortunately, these slopes proved steeper and harder than expected. Progress slowed and feet became frozen. At 4pm the climbers had reached an altitude of 7,170m. Although they knew the summit was in their grasp, they also knew it would need another two hours to reach, followed by a difficult and cold descent in to the night. Wisely they elected to retreat and with time running out for most team members, no more attempts could be made.
Istor-O-Nal has many-summit massif north of Tirich Mir with perhaps as many as 11 individual tops, several of which are still unclimbed. The topography was finally unraveled in 1969 when a Spanish expedition made the first ascent of the Main Summit (7,403m) via the South West Ridge from the Upper Tirich Glacier.
Part of the Istor-O-Nal Massif as seen from the vicinity of a 4,250m Base Camp on the South Udren Glacier to the northeast. (A) Lopar Zom (c6,620m), (B) Istor-O-Nal North East (7,276m), (C) Istor-O-Nal North Summit (7,373m), (D) Unnamed Pt 6,241m and (E) Nobaisum Zom (7,070m). The route attempted by the Swiss is hidden in the lower section but Camps 3, 4 and their high point are marked on the upper ridge.