side profile of Kristin Harila

Kristin Harila‘s long-awaited permit to enter China to climb Cho Oyu and Shishapangma hasn’t come. If she wants to break Nirmal Purja’s 14×8,000m record, she must do both by November 2.

So she leaves tomorrow to attempt Cho Oyu from the Nepal side, hoping that permission to climb Shishapangma — which is entirely within Tibet — will come at the last minute. So far, Harila has summited 12 8,000’ers in 147 days.

Traditionally, Cho Oyu has been considered the easiest of the 14, but that speaks of the normal route from the Chinese side. Climbing from the formidable Nepal side, via a new route, will be a different matter.For once, Pasdawa Sherpa and Dawa Ongchu — who accompanied Harila on her previous 8,000’ers — will not be joining her. Instead, she has joined forces with Adriana Brownlee and Gelje Sherpa. Two other Sherpas will also accompany them. Seven Summit Treks, not 8K, will handle the logistics.

The Pioneer Adventure team is progressing quickly. The team led by Mingma Dorchi Sherpa has already reached Camp 3. Climbers include Sanu Sherpa (who summited Manaslu twice and attempted Dhaulagiri in recent weeks). The team has been unable to send pictures yet, because of sketchy internet.

Pioneer’s team is independent of Harila’s or Gelje’s group.

Thethree people smile on a narrow snowy point.
Pasdawa Sherpa and Dawa Ongchu atop Manaslu. The two guides will not be joining Harila on Cho Oyu. 

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