Géographie du Cachemire
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Pute towers (~c5,800m)
Third Tower -c5,800m-
Sakar Sar -c6,272m -
Sangemarmar Sar -c6,949m (c7,050m)-
Sani Pakush -c6,885m-
First & second tower
Third tower
Shani Peak -c5,800m- (Naltar valley)
Shani Peak -c5,800m-, sommet Est
Shani Peak -c5,800m-, sommet Sud Est
Shispare -c7,611m-
Snow Dome -c5,322m- (Sentinel Peak – Vallée de Naltar)
Sumaiyer Peak -c5,520m-
Tpopdan Sar -c6,106m-
Ultar Peak (Death Peak) -c7,388m-
Ultar (Death Peak) -c7,388m, pilier Sud Est
Ya Chhish (c5,130m)
Yeti Sar -c5,980m-

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Image satellite du massif de Batura
Satellite image
(47 ko)

Pute towers Group -~c5,880-:

A mixed nationality team of Tom Goodwin and Pete Scott from New Zealand, Johan 'Sugar' Gouws from South Africa and Sam Stacey plus Peter Thompson from the UK visited the fine granite spires of the Pute Towers, which form the extension of the South Ridge of Hachindar Chhish (7,163m) north of Aliabad in the Hunza Valley. The team set up Base Camp on the Yain Hisk pasture in early July after a three day approach from the Karakoram Highway via the Muchuhar Glacier. Subsequently, they spent 42 days in the region, experiencing only 11 or so days of bad weather but rather more on which snow conditions were considered dangerously unstable.

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Third Tower -~c5,800m- :

The team made the first ascent of the Third Tower (5,800m: the second highest of the group) via a long east-facing gully above the Yain Hisk pasture, followed by the crest of the South Ridge, which consisted of snow slopes interspersed with steep mixed rock pitches. They were denied access to the Second and highest Tower, which lies just to the north, by difficult terrain and deteriorating weather.

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Sakar Sar -c6,272m -

This remote 6,272m peak in the northern Batura Muztagh received its first ascent in August by all four members of a Japanese expedition, Miyazawa Akira (leader), Ishikawa Makoto, Kamei Kanji and Suzuki Teruaki, together with Alam Jan and Anwar Khan from Pakistan. The peak lies on the Afghan border (Wakhan Corridor) and is accessed via the Sakarjerab Valley, which runs down to the long Chapursan Valley not far below its head at the Chillinji An (c5,290m).
The team approached via Sost on the KKH, a long trek up the Chapursan Valley to the bridge at Babaghund, where they crossed the river and moved north to a Base Camp below Sakar Sar. They subsequently climbed the South East Flank to the summit.

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Sangemarmar Sar -c6,949m (c7,050m)- :

The summit of Sangemar Sar is located on the South ridge of the Batura Wall wha separate the Muchuhar & Shispare glacier. This summit is considerate as the " crystal " of the Baltit oasis.
First ascent by a japanese expedition in 1982 (route on the South West ridge)
A British team led by Alan Pilkington attempted to make the second ascent of this fine 6,949m peak above the east bank of the Muchuhar Glacier. Unfortunately the unsettled warm weather meant the lower section of the route was exposed to stonefall and potential avalanche danger and the team failed to gain much height on the mountain. Sangemarmar was first climbed during the excellent summer of 1984 by a large team from Japan's Osaka University. The expedition fixed 3,000m of rope on the South West Ridge before six members reached the summit.

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Sani Pakush -c6,885m-:

This fine pyramidal peak, which lies north of Chalt on the watershed between the Kukuay and Batura Glaciers, has only been ascended once, by a German team who climbed up and down the North West Ridge in 1991.
The British team of Andy Benson, Kenton Cool, Rich Cross and Al Powell, who received both 1998 Nick Estcourt and top Lyon Equipment Awards, were unsuccessful in their attempt on the c2,600m West Buttress of Sani Pakush (6,885m). Like many expeditions this year operating in August the team suffered from unstable weather and never experienced a long enough fine spell to realistically reach the summit. The lower section of the ridge comprised three consecutive rock towers and the team planned to establish a camp at 5,200m on the col behind the first tower and fix a safe rappel line to the ground, before making an continuous push to the summit.

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First & Second Tower :

The First Tower was climbed in early August and involved 800m of mixed and pure rock with pitches up to VI (British HVS). It was descended in 16 rappels. The Second Tower was shorter but started with a pitch of British E1 5b.

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Third Tower :

On the third day all four reached the base of the Third Tower. The morning of the fourth day dawned with ominous cloud cover but they set off, climbing five mixed and rock pitches up the only feasible line (which necessitated a bold lead up a poorly protected pitch at E3 5c) until rockfall from above cut one of the ropes. This incident, together with other rock fall incidents and the difficult, compact terrain that could not be aided or avoided if the weather broke, persuaded them to descend. The decision proved wise, as over the following two days, while they descended to Base Camp, a storm moved in depositing half a metre of snow. The high point at c5,600m was just 400m short of where the buttress joins the South Ridge, above which an 800m ascent over 35° snow with several mixed pitches appeared to lead directly to the summit.
The team report that the porters from the Bar Valley lived up to their notorious reputation and proved a constant nightmare on both the walk into, and out from, Base Camp. At the suggestion of their liaison officer, and in an attempt to improve the situation for future expeditions, a 'request for lawful action' was filed against the porters for breach of contract, with 35,000 rupees in overpaid wages to be collected and donated to a local school. The Deputy Commissioner in Gilgit responded very well to this idea and assured the team that action would be taken. However, their liaison officer has recommended that all future expeditions hire porters from the local Pakistan government administration rather than the village administration in Bar.

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Shani Peak -c5,800m- (Naltar valley):

Several British teams visited this easily accessible valley off the Karakoram Highway just north of Gilgit. There have now been a considerable number of small expeditions to Shani and its surrounding peaks, the majority of British origin and more than a handful to attempt the true North Face. This somewhat vast, technically difficult and objectively dangerous face, which was probably first brought to public notice after its picture appeared in Trevor Braham's autobiographical classic, Himalayan Odyssey, remains the major prize on this easily accessible mountain. The four man group of Martin Cooper, Charles Halsten, Jonathan Morgan and Nick Wallis made a probable third ascent of Shani's West Ridge, the route of the first ascent in August 1986 by Roger Everett and Guy Muhlemann of this shapely 5,800m peak towards the head of the valley.
A four-man Dutch Shani Expedition (Andreas Amons, Elwin van der Gragt, Benno Netelenbos and Melvin Redeker) completed two new routes on this impressive 5,885m peak in the Naltar Valley.

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Shani Peak -c5,800m-, East summit :

A four-man Dutch Shani Expedition (Andreas Amons, Elwin van der Gragt, Benno Netelenbos and Melvin Redeker) completed two new routes on this impressive 5,885m peak in the Naltar Valley. On the 22nd August, Amons and Redeker reached the lower East Summit, which registered c5,610m on their altimeter, after having made the first ascent of the 1,000m high North East Spur. The two climbers spent a full four days on the mountain due to poor weather, bivouacking on the East Top for 33 hours in a hail storm before rappelling and down-climbing the line of ascent. They had originally hoped to traverse all the summits of Shani and descend via the Original Route on the West Ridge climbed by Roger Everett and Guy Muhlemann in 1986. Although the foot of the spur is relatively close to Base Camp at Upper Shani (3,920m), the icefall of the Shani North Glacier bars direct access. Instead, a circuitous 10-hour approach has to be made, at first northwest towards the Pakhor Pass then back across the glacier. After an initial gully, the route on the Spur followed a snow ridge, breaking through the rock buttress above via a narrow 70° ice gully. In the upper section the pair were forced off the crest due to appalling rock and made a rising traverse towards the edge of a serac barrier, where they found excellent granite. They climbed this good rock to a false top at c5,400m and then continued more easily up 50° snow to make the first ascent of the East Top. An overall Alpine grade of TD (V and 65/70°) was quoted. The party felt that more snowy conditions would reduce this grade.

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Shani Peak -c5,800m-, South East face :

On the 20th August and on the opposite side of the mountain van der Gragt and Netelenbos attempted the South East Face of the Main Summit. After several notable British attempts in the '80s, this side of the peak was eventually climbed in 1989 by Duncan Francis, Peter Leeming and Martin Oakes. The Dutch line lay very close to the 1989 British Route, climbing the rock buttress to the left in the lower part of the face, then continuing more directly in the upper section to the summit. On the first attempt the two Dutch failed at around half-height, caught in the same storm that severely hampered their team-mates on the North East Spur. On the 29th-30th August they made a second attempt and reached the summit after just 15 hours climbing and one bivouac. The initial rock pillar gave excellent climbing on 'Chamonix-like' granite, mainly IV and V with a crux section of VI and a wet slabby pitch of V+ on the right flank of the crest near its top. The pair then climbed through mixed ground and a rocky section called the Fortress (V) to a bivouac on the Central Snowfield at around 5,220m. Next day they climbed directly to the main summit via the snowfield and a hidden couloir with a section of 80°. It took 12 hours to descend the West Ridge and return to Base Camp. Next day, the 31st, Amons and Redeker also reached the summit via more or less the same route, having started on the 30th. This pair made an important variant (V+) on the left side of the crest of the rock pillar to avoid the crux section climbed by the previous party. The 1,600m route was thought to be TD/TD+.

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Shispare -c7,611m-:

The Polish/German team of J.Kurczab climbed Shispare in 1974 by its South/East edge. The route : From the Passu glacier to the Northern edge (2 km), then cross a vast plateau (6700m approx.). Then, the route is diverted and, at the beginning, difficult (4 high camps, the last at 6700m).

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Snow Dome -c5,322m- (Sentinel Peak - Naltar valley) :

Halsten and Morgan, together with two other British climbers, made an ascent of the popular 5,030m Snow Dome to the east, Morgan largely on ski. The team report somewhat quarrelsome porters used to access this beautiful but nowadays somewhat frequented Alpine valley and were subjected to a little theft on the approach. During acclimatization, Andreas Amons, Elwin van der Gragt, Benno Netelenbos and Melvin Redeker climbed the popular Snow Dome, Sentinel Peak and the lower Sentinel North (at AD), the latter measured at 5,322m and first ascended in 1984 by Dick Renshaw and Stephen Venables after an unsuccessful attempt on Shani's still unclimbed lower South Pillar; the true crest of the ridge left of both the 1999 Dutch and 1989 British starts. During this early period the Dutch report that their Base Camp was robbed one night, forcing them to hire an armed guard. Thereafter, and perhaps not surprisingly, relations with the local inhabitants became a lot more cordial.

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Sumaiyer Peak -c5,520m- :

During August, 25-year old David Larrión climbed a series of routes on peaks relatively close to the Karakoram Highway. Early in the month with Ager Madariaga he made the probable first ascent of the East Ridge of Pt 5,520m on the watershed between the Sumaiyer and Nagar Valleys. Although the Spanish pair refer to this as Sumaiyer Peak, it was originally christened Peak Dawson by the British first ascensionists who climbed from the Sumaiyer Valley in 1979. The true Sumaiyer Peak lies directly opposite Peak Dawson on the west side of the lower Silkiang Glacier and was climbed via the East Buttress (again by British) in 1984.

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Tpopdan Sar (Tupopdan)-c6,106m- :

Tupopdan mean the " mouthful of sun mountain " in local language, good name decause it's ful red colours at the sunset. Tpopdan peak dominate the wondefull Passu Cathedrales. In 1987, Tpopdan Sar was climb by British P.Cox, L.Griffin et M.Woolridge, who traced a beautifull and hard route 2000 meters high.

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Ultar (Death Peak) -c7,388m- :

The suffixe " tar " in burushaski mean " summer pasture ", Ultar is the " mountain of the pasture ".

The 7,388m Ultar Massif, one of the highest distinctive unclimbed summits in the world, has been attempted over the last 10 years by approximately 15 expeditions, mainly of Japanese origin. Although all possible routes are very long and committing, it was only a matter of time before a large siege-style expedition would win through. The most attempted line over the years has been the very long South Ridge above Karimabad, on which a number of Japanese, including the famous Tsuneo Hasagawa in 1991, have lost their lives.
It was slightly surprising then that the first ascent should come from the north; a very infrequently tried approach above the Ghulkin Glacier but the first used to attempt the peak by a joint Pakistan-Japanese team in 1986. On the 21st of July (one report states the 11th) Akito Yamazaki and Kiysh Matsuka reached the summit in an Alpine style push. However, on the descent Yamazaki became totally exhausted and died of oedema at Camp 1.
At the same time a second Japanese team was fixing the South Ridge. Ken Takahashi had previously tried the mountain by three different routes and was a member of the team that made the first attempt in 1986. Latterly, he had tried the South Ridge in 1994. This time he reached the summit on the 31st July with his four companions from the Japan Kathmandu Club, Tsutsumi Nobuo, Ando Masayuki, Slato Wataru and Hoshino Ryushi. The most intricate part, as expected, was the series of pinnacles on the ridge between c6,200m and 6,400m. However, it is not known how they tackled the final 400m headwall, either direct or in the obvious couloir on the left. The team fixed more than 2,000m of rope and it is reported that they managed to retrieve it all bar a section of less than 200m. This length lay in the side of a gully, which at the end of the trip was being continuously bombarded by rockfall. Despite several attempts to remove the rope, it was eventually abandoned when the situation became positively life threatening. The team was subsequently fined the statutory $1,000 by the Ministry of Tourism for violating the Environmental Policy.

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Ultar (7388m), South East pilar :

A four-member French expedition comprising Jerome Blanc-Gras, Erwan le Lann, Christophe Profit and Hervé Quallizza were unsuccessful during May/June on their project to ascend the giant c3,600m-high South East Pillar of Ultar (7,388m). This pillar, similar to three times the height of the Walker Spur, has been attempted only once previously (by Japanese).

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Ya Chhish -c5,130m- :

He climbed the fore summit of Ya Chhish (5130 m), located exactly in front of the face, to take a good look at the coming Batura climbing route, from base to summit. Ya Chhish was climbed May 23 1976 by two German climbers.

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Yeti Sar -c5,980m- :

The 29th August 1998, the mountain received its first ascent by four Germans from the Dresden region. Jörg Ehrlich, Frank Polter, Dieter Ruelke and Markus Walter first established Base camp at Karambar Ilag (3,300m), then made a high Camp by a glacier lake in the Kutshkulin Valley at 4,300m. Ruelke and Walter set off at 4am to climb another snowy peak at the head of the glacier. Christened Yeti Sar, this 5,980m mountain was ascended via 15 pitches of straightforward 50° ice but the two climbers had a narrow escape when a huge corniced section of summit ridge collapsed just five metres in front of them. At least it allowed an excellent view northwest to the high peaks of the Pamir. All four were back in Gilgit by jeep on the 1st October.

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Sources :

All informations mainly coming from,

Ø The American Alpine Journal, 1996 to 2004 editions
Ø Himalaya in Alpin Style by Andy Fanshawe & Stephen Venables, (Arthaud - France), 192 pages, 1996 edition
Ø The Karakorum, Mountains of Pakistan de Shiro Shirahata édition Ferezsons (pvt.) ltd
Ø Les plus belles montagnes du monde (Glénat - Grenoble-France), 296 pages, 1993 edition
Ø Himalaya-Karakoram, Mountains of Pakistan by Shiro Shirahata, (Denoël - France), edition 1990
Ø Ils ont conquis l'Himalaya by Bernard Pierre (Plon - France), 1979 edition
Ø Deux siècles d'alpinisme by Chris Bonnington (Delachaux & Niestlé), 1992 edition
Ø ExplorersWeb web site (k2climb)

... and some others. All informations compiled by Blankonthemap.

See also the same topics pages :
Himalaya du Cachemire Hindu Raj : Description géographique Hindu Kush : Description géographique
Cartes géographiques du Cachemire
Images satellites du Cachemire Statistiques géographiques Index géographique

Révision D - july 06th 2007 (http://blankonthemap.free.fr)

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