A climber fell from the 12th tallest mountain in the world after refusing to turn around in dangerous winter conditions, organizers said.
A missing Russian-American climber has been found dead after falling from the 12th highest mountain in the world, refusing to turn around in dangerous winter conditions, said the company that organized his climb.
Alex Goldfarb pushed on his own when his teammate failed to persuade him to abandon their attempt to climb the 8,051-meter (26,414-foot) Broad Peak in the Karakoram Range on the border with China.
“We are deeply saddened to have lost our climbing partner and friend,” said Laszlo Pinter, spokesperson for the 2021 Broad Peak Winter Expedition, on Tuesday.
“The helicopter search mission found his body on Pastore Peak where he is believed to have fallen from the mountain,” he said in a statement.
Official news update 18. 01. 2021 of the METE #BroadPeak #Winter # shipping:
Unfortunately, it’s now confirmed that we’ve lost Alex:https://t.co/ZMwHia646Y
(Please feel free to share, with a link to this article as an official source) pic.twitter.com/HfA2CiTB5E
– Laszlo Pinter (@PraeriePanther) January 18, 2021
A doctor and lecturer at Harvard University in the United States, Goldfarb had volunteered to treat patients with COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, his son Levi Goldfarb told Reuters news agency .
“He was thinking [mountain climbing] was gorgeous, ”Levi said. “He thought it was liberating, because in the mountains it didn’t matter who you were at sea level – a doctor, a lawyer or even a thief, all of those labels were removed and you were playing by another one set. rules. He made great friends in the mountains, he saved lives and ran away, and he traveled the world to do it.
It was a bittersweet week for the rock climbing community, which saw 10 Nepalese climbers climb K2 for the first time in winter, but also the death of Spanish climber Sergi Mingote on the same mountain.
Goldfarb was attempting a winter ascent of Broad Peak with Hungarian Zoltan Szlanko as part of an unsponsored two-man expedition.
Their team described the attempt as “the cleanest style with no high altitude carriers or extra oxygen.”
Szlanko, an experienced climbing instructor and mountaineer rescuer, found the conditions too dangerous and insisted the two return, Pinter said, but Goldfarb continued.
Karrar Haidri, a spokesman for the Pakistan Alpine Club, said the Pakistani military found Goldfarb’s body on Monday.
Broad Peak is one of the so-called “8,000”, the 14 mountains over 8,000 meters (26,000 feet).
It was first climbed in the summer of 1957 by an Austrian team, while a Polish quartet reached the top in the winter of 2013, but two disappeared on the descent and were pronounced dead a few days later.
Goldfarb had been missing since Saturday, the same day the Nepalese team reached the summit of K2, the second highest mountain in the world and the last peak over 8,000 meters to be conquered in winter.
Although he is renowned for his climbing expertise, there has never been a Nepalese climber on the first winter ascent of a peak over 8,000 meters.
K2 is known as the “Wild Mountain” because of its harsh conditions: winds can blow in excess of 200 km / hour (125 mph) and temperatures can drop to minus 60 degrees Celsius (minus 76 degrees Fahrenheit).
Nestled between the western end of the Himalayas, the Hindu Kush mountains and the Karakoram range, Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan region is home to 18 of the world’s 50 highest peaks.
It is also home to three of the seven longest glaciers in the world outside of the polar regions.