Indian Himalaya: Climbing and Other News


2011

Total foreign expeditions 40.  Out of these 21 expeditions were to easy and routine peaks.  Of 57 Indian expeditions about 1/3 were serious peaks or attempts to be covered here. Not unexpectedly no Indian team, except from the Indian Mountaineering Foundation, climbed in Uttarakhand as the local rules demand payment of  fees from the Indian teams also. The pride of place in climbing world for...more »

2010

If you pardon the cliché, whenever God closes the door he opens a window. Almost same here in the Indian Himalaya in the year 2010. There were not many expeditions and few high peaks were climbed. May be  this is a reflection of higher peak fees and above all hindrances caused by the bureaucracy.  But with that there was  much activity in small peaks- new regions and smaller teams. May be an...more »

2009

The best news of the year 2009 is that Indian government has opened 100 new peaks for climbing!  Though the notification came in early 2010 the process was undertaken throughout the year 2009. It is almost after 17 years that a number of peaks have been  opened to climbers.  All the peaks are in Zanskar and Ladakh area. Many of them are along the road which runs Kargil-Sankoo   to Padam.  It...more »

2008

New ascents, high peaks, exploration of new areas and most importantly, challenging climbs by Indian mountaineers- all were part of the 2008 season in the Indian Himalaya. This year will be remembered for some energetic climbs and a rather settled weather. Totally 65 foreign expeditions climbed in India. Since IMF has opened a liaison office at Leh to collect fees locally, Stok Kangri has...more »

2007

Overview The year 2007 saw reduced mountaineering activity in the Indian Himalaya. An important reason is the stiff charge enforced by two state governments whose states contain large numbers of peaks i.e. Sikkim and Uttarakhand. In addition to expedition fees imposed by the Indian Mountaineering Foundation, these two states insist on additional fees and stiff conditions which have put off...more »

2006

Overview Climbing expeditions to the Indian Himalaya appears to be at a standstill. Overall there were reduced numbers of teams, both from foreign countries and Indian teams. More than that it was reduction in number of peaks being attempted, specially the challenging peaks and routes, that is more evident. One of the main reason is the unrealistic fee structures and rules by State governments...more »

2005

Overall 46 Foreign and 47 Indian expeditions climbed in the Indian Himalaya during the year. This was overall, a lower figure than the normal number of expeditions during  a year. Amongst the foreign expeditions, more that half climbed the  usual peaks like Kun, Kedar Dome, Nun and others.  Many of the expeditions  faced bad weather in mid September and some had to give  up due to poor snow and...more »

2004

While the world is opening its doors to mountaineers and mountain lovers, the news from the new Uttaranchal state in India are distressing. The state contains some of the most beautiful areas in the Indian Himalaya with peaks like Nanda Devi, Kamet, Shivling and several others.  The Uttaranchal State has imposed severe restrictions on climbing and imposed special royalty charges for mountaineers...more »

2003

The total number of expeditions to the Indian Himalaya remained almost the same that is 110 as compared to 108 in the year 2002. 75 Indian and 35 foreign expeditions climbed here, but only about 43 expeditions were to notable peaks and these have been covered here. Again, there was a drop in the number of foreign teams to climb in the Indian Himalaya  - only 35 expeditions climbed here in 2003. ...more »

2002

In the year 2002 there were 108 expeditions to the Indian Himalaya. Out of these 73 were Indian expeditions, and 53 were to notable peaks and which have been covered here. There was a drop in number of foreign teams to climb in the Indian Himalaya and only 35 expeditions climbed here in 2002. Many popular areas like Nun-Kun in Zanskar, Kishtwar and entire Kashmir valley remained closed for...more »

2001

There were celebrations galore for mountaineers and mountain lovers. Year 2001 began with ‘Millennium celebrations’ and ended with plans for the celebrations for the ‘International Year of the Mountains.’ The new Millennium celebrations began when the Himalayan Club invited three surviving ‘Tiger Sherpas’ at a special gathering in Mumbai. This was a fitting honour to the last three living...more »

2000

This year was marked by several good expeditions and ascents of new peaks in the Indian Himalaya. Amongst the leading climbs in the Garhwal were the ascents of Nilkanth, a new line of ascent on Shivling by the Germans and the Korean ascents of Mukut Parvat East and Abi Gamin. A British team visited the Arwa valley again and made a fine ascent of Arwa Spire. Indian teams climbed Sudarshan Parvat,...more »

1999

The major event in the Indian Himalaya, without doubt, was the ascent of Gya. It had all the makings of a film-story. Gya ( 6794 m) at the trijunction of Himachal, Jammu & Kashmir and Tibet had received 8 expeditions so far. Yet, this mountain had remained elusive and had had no ascents so far either due to misidentification or bad weather. When I first explored its approaches in 1983 and 1987...more »

1998

One of the major topics that dominated the discussions in the Indian mountaineering circles was the blunder about the ascent of Nyegi Kangsang. In the Himalayan Journal, Volume 52 (1996), and in some other leading mountaineering journals, articles on the Nyegi Kangsang expedition were published, which claimed the first ascent of this 6983 m high peak situated on the border of Arunachal Pradesh...more »

1997

The year 1997 was declared a year of celebration to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Indian Independence. But unfortunately the weather was not in a celebratory mood and several expeditions had to face the wrath of the weather Gods. One expedition, specially organised for the occasion, was the traverse across the entire Himalayan range by a group of ladies. A walk Across The High Himalaya A...more »

1996

Compared to 1995, when many new peaks were climbed, this year was rather quieter in terms of the climbs achieved. The year was particularly noted for poor weather and plenty of rain even in late October which defeated many expeditions. According to the Hindu customs and calendar, which is based on the phases of moon and has 30 days, an extra month is added every three years to compensate for...more »

1995

This season India perhaps will be remembered for one of the worst tragedies in the Indian Himalaya. Thirteen climbers from the Border Security Force (one of India¹s para-military forces) died on Saser Kangri in the East Karakoram. Unlike the much publicised deaths on K2 in 1986 and 1995, this tragedy went almost unnoticed. Full details are given below. On a happier note, many other climbs...more »

1994

There were 154 expeditions to the Indian Himalaya this year. Out of these, 96 were Indian expeditions, 53 foreign and five were Joint. A very heavy and late monsoon troubled expeditions from July until almost the end of September. Surprisingly, the monsoon was most severe in the Trans-Himalayan areas. Spiti had the Worst weather in its history, while Ladakh and the Eastern Karakoram also had much...more »

1993

This was an active year in the Indian Himalaya, though a heavy storm in August troubled many expeditions. The Government of India has shifted the ‘inner line’, opening up many new areas for mountaineers. The major new areas opened up are in Kinnaur and Spiti, where the entire area west of the road is now approachable. This includes many good climbing areas like Bara Shigri, Tos nala, Dibibokari...more »

1992

Again a very active year, despite last year’s earthquake and political uncertainties. The good news is some areas currently prohibited to foreigners, e.g. Milam valley (Kumaon), Nilkanth and Mana (Gangotri) and Kinnaur and Spiti (Himachal Pradesh) are likely to open up. Unfortunately peak fees are likely to start from $3000. Better check your budget; with the recent inflation in India things are...more »

1991

During the year more than 215 expeditions operated in the Indian Himalaya. If you add to these the many climbing parties in Nepal, Pakistan and Tibet, together with the even greater number of trekking groups, this influx can be termed an ‘explosion’. A lot for a young mountain range to take. Kangchenjunga - NE spur An Indo-Japanese team was given permission to climb from the east, the Sikkim...more »

1990

So much is happening in the Indian Himalaya that it is difficult to cover it all immediately. I begin with some important climbs of 1989 which escaped attention last year. First, two peaks in the east. The fifth ascent of Pauhunri (7125) on the Sikkim - Tibet watershed was made on 1 November 1989. Base Camp (5099m) was established at Chholamo, with two more camps at 5343m and 6209m on a...more »

1989

The climbing scene in the Indian Himalaya was active, as always. The East Karakoram area received three expeditions during the year; they different in style and went to different regions within the area. The only joint expedition with foreigners was an Indo-British team led by Sonam Palzor. Rimo II (7373m) and Ramo IV (7169m) were climbed on 12 July in separate attempts. They reached the North...more »

1988

The Year began with celebrations. The Himalayan Club, born in 1928, celebrated its Diamond Jubilee in February at Bombay, Delhi and Calcutta. A series of talks, exhibitions and dinners was organised. At Bombay, Stephen Venables was the main attraction with four talks on his climbing experiences. (‘I filled in the gaps’ was his understatement in a letter to a british magazine.) His...more »

1987

As I climbed up the Malathuni ridge on the way to the Nanda Devi Sanctuary in 1974, a porter from Lata came within earshot and whispered, ‘Don’t tell anyone, but last few years "they" have been carrying things up and down Nanda Devi secretly.’ This ‘don’t tell anyone’ activity of ‘they’ was known to many – climbers, and politicians alike – but it was an open secret for many years. In 1987, with a...more »