Where is K2?

K2 is the second tallest mountain in the world, and it’s in the Karakorum mountain range on the border between Pakistan and China.

How high is K2?

In meters, it’s 8611 meters tall. So in feet K2 is 28,251 feet tall.

How did K2 to get its name?

It’s a survey name. So when surveys were originally being done of the Himalaya and the Karakoram mountains, mountains were often… No one knew this was the second tallest mountain in the world, no one knew it was going to be very important or have a lot of history, and so mountains just got the name and a number, a letter and a number. So K2 for Karakoram, and two because of its position in the grid. K2 is the name that both the local Balti people and foreign climbers use.

How many people have climbed K2?

306 people have summited K2

Why is K2 so dangerous?

There are a lot of things that make K2 dangerous. Unfortunately, over 20% of people who have summited the mountain have died. That’s the fatality rate about 20%, one in five, which is really pretty horrific. The things that make it so dangerous, of course it’s extreme high altitude. Second, the location where it is in Pakistan is much further north, than the other 8000 meter peaks in Nepal and Tibet, and it’s known for much worse weather because of its sort of Northwestern position. So really big storms, lots of wind and unpredictable weather. And then finally, there are no easy routes on the mountain, all the climbing is really technical. And all of this sort of commonly climbed or attempted routes go under something called the bottlenecks seracs. And the bottlenecks serac is this huge hanging piece of ice. And if you’re climbing the mountain, it’s impossible to avoid those blocks of ice on some sections, especially going through this bottleneck, and unfortunately, that’s been the cause of a lot of fatalities over the years.

Who was the first woman to climb K2?

Aaccording to the internet, the first woman to summit K2 was a Polish woman named Wanda Rutkiewicz. 

How far is K2 from Mount Everest?

817 miles as the crow flies from K2 to Mount Everest

Is K2 harder to climb than Mount Everest?

K2 is the much more difficult climb technically, loads of the climbing is like steep ice climbing, steep rock climbing, where you’re using your hands or your ice tools as well as your feet, whereas Everest is a little bit lower angle, so the climbing is much more difficult on K2. It doesn’t matter how good a climber you are or what great teammates you have around you if the ice falls it kills you, and that’s it. On Everest the danger really comes from the extreme high altitude that last 500 feet and being blacked out not able to make good decisions.

Is oxygen needed to climb K2?

95% or more of all ascends on Everest, just like K2 have been done with supplemental oxygen, so the vast majority of people need or want oxygen on their K2 climb, but it is physiologically possible to summit K2 without supplemental oxygen, you’re much slower, it’s much more painful. It takes years, more experience and training to be prepared for and able to kind of instinctually climb even when your brain isn’t working very well anymore, and then it takes a lot of work in terms of fitness, and of course, a lot of patience with acclimatizing and building the red blood cell count that you need to survive at 28,000 feet without oxygen.

How many people climb K2 every year?

K2 is a really interesting mountain because it’s so challenging and there’s a lot of risk, people go to K2 every single year and attempted it, but two out of three years there’ll be zero summit’s, no one will get on top of the mountain either because of terrible weather, avalanche conditions or ice falls and accidents and things like that. And then every three years or so on average, there will be one good year, where a number of climbers will summit.

How do you train for K2?

The most important way to train for K2 is to climb other smaller mountains first over a period of years or decades. K2 is very dangerous, 20% fatality rate one in five, don’t come home. It’s just not worth going there and taking that risk if you haven’t spent years building experience and also being sure that you’re that passionate about the sport and the activity, that you’re willing to take a 20% risk of getting killed up there.

Who was the first to summit K2?

The most common route on the mountain is called the Abruzzi route. Italian expedition 1954 by the Abruzzi Spurs for some of the routes named after Abruzzi but it were two climbers summited Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni. K2 is really considered like the Italian mountain, because they put so many of these early expeditions into place, and we’re really passionate about trying to climb the second tallest mountain in the world.

Why climb K2?

The thing that makes big mountains so special is the unknown, the uncertainty, most times you go there you fail and you have to keep taking small steps forward each day of an expedition, even when there’s no light at the end of the tunnel, no hope, things seem impossible, the majority of people enjoy that kind of challenge and feeling.

How cold is K2?

Its really cold . Kinda unwritten rule for me climbing without supplemental oxygen, don’t go if it’s cold in the negative 20 degrees and this wind of more than like 25 or 30 miles per hour, but that’s still really cold. But that’s summit day. Lower on the mountain it can actually, you know, heat was an issue. This year we had such a warm season and the sun was so intense that we’re really seeing the effects of climate change in the Karakoram that they were actually rivers opening up on the glacier down close to Base camp. They were making it really difficult to even get across the glacier to the steep climbing itself. It was also causing loads of wet slide, hot avalanches on the lower half of the mountain, so it’s really a place of extremes, extreme cold and extreme heat.

Does K2 have snow year round?

There are permanent glaciers and, they are made up of snow that’s been compacted to such a degree that its density is reached a level of at least point eight it starts to flow like water and that’s why glaciers actually by definition move, and that’s what creates the big cracks the crevasses and also things like ice falls or like the bottlenecks serac it’s because the glacier is moving the pieces have to fall off of it and fall down the mountain when it goes over a cliff. So there is yet hundreds and hundreds if not thousands, and thousands of feet of snow on the mountain, especially the upper mountain where the glaciers are, at base camp you’re still gonna have snow year round, you know, in the summer, the warmest period when we were climbing this year, there would be times when there was not actually snow on our tents or right around our tents but there is still ice and glacier all around us. So year around snow even all the way down at the base camp.

What is the K2 bottleneck?

The bottleneck is just a climbers name for this area on the mountain where a huge ice cliff, which is constantly dropping pieces, making it really dangerous, those pieces are funneled through what looks like an hourglass shaped couloir or gully that you have to climb up so you’re climbing sort of 50 to 60 degrees, snow and ice up underneath the huge serac and, and it’s shaped like a big funnel. So anything that falls off the big ice cliff funnels through this section of really technical steep climbing above 28,000 feet. So it’s called the bottleneck because climbers inevitably get slowed way down in that area, because it’s so steep and technical and it’s also 28,000 feet, so if you’re climbing without oxygen, you’re incredibly slow. 

Why is K2 an important mountain?

It’s the second tallest in the world, it’s technically difficult than Everest and its fatality rate is kind of lent the nickname “The savage mountain.” It’s truly one of the most dangerous mountains on the planet.

Previous post Next post