After withdrawal from Camp 2, on 25 April '75 the leader decided to send out an independent three-day mission to explore the Tongshiong Glacier and attempt the Zemu Gap.

The Party consisted of : J. K. Bajaj, Instructor Nima Tashi and Sherpa Passang. Having known the daily weather temperaments after 11 a.m. we were on our way down to the Talung glacier from Camp 1, at Yongiotak rather early. From Camp 1 coming down to 8alung glacier—which runs from N.W. to E.E. and is heavily crevassed—involved a steep descent of almost 1,000 ft. After zig¬zagging the li km. width of Talung glacier, we started up the scree slope which varied from 60° to 75° in its steepness. We were now heading for the false gap which lies exactly opposite Yongiotak lakes, which we reached by 1 p.m.

From here we could see a small arc of a milky white glacier. In order to reach this tempting spot, Tashi decided that we shed off, our rucksacks under an overhang of the rock. We went up steadily and after seven hours of steep climb and hopping from one boulder to another, we were now on snow and ice at a height of 17,200 ft. This in fact is the bulge of the Tongshiong glacier towards the south and is elevated about 700 ft. from the main glacier which runs almost parallel to the Talung glacier, although smaller in length (approx. six km.).

On 26 April, Tashi and myself were right in the centre Of the Tongshiong glacier which is more clean in comparison with the Talung glacier. After crossing the 2 km. width we closed up with the milky white glacier which is the overflow from the South* Simvo glacier and Kangchenjunga S.E. ridge. Some feed¬ing to this is also being done by Peak 6350 m. (South of Simvo). The white glacier looks like a big stadium with vertical ice cutting up to a height of 200 ft. After zig-zagging each bit we reached the top of this broken glacier, which is an absolutely flat platform.

At this juncture we roped up and approached the last obstacle just below the gap. Tashi leading on the rope, we started on the vertical ice slope. From here we could see the Overhang¬ing South Simvo glacier. On the lightly snow packed ice, crampons dug well and the going was good. At 11 a.m. when we were just about to reach our goal, we were cut off from the Zemu Gap by two big open crevasses (approx 40 ft. in width)— running from the Kangchenjunga S.E. ridge to Simvo South One could hardly guess their depth and both looked identical from the place where we stood. So this was the end of the Zemu attempt just about 200 ft. short of the Gap.

We took plenty of pictures of this area and the Tongshiong glacier en route. From the account, it is clear that the Gap can be reached if one goes prepared to bridge the two crevasses. There is no other technical difficulty involved.


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