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Simone Moro & Co: Island Peak
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Dec 13, 2004 14: 29 EST

The summit of Island peak is the highest point reached by the Italian-Polish team lead by Simone Moro. Before getting into more serious business – the winter climb of Shisha Pangma – the group is enjoying the trek and the glorious weather.

Great late fall weather

“Yesterday the entire team summited Island Peak in sunny weather. We had incredible views from the summit. Weather conditions has been really good and warm during the last two weeks. We were without gloves on the summit of Island Peak! To be honest, the weather has helped us a great deal to get an easy and soft acclimatization.”

Back to Kathmandu

“Tomorrow we will start the descent and back to Deboche, at 3500 meters. Then we will head back to Kathmandu in order to take a bus to Tibet on December 20. Two days later, on December 22 – on the second day of winter - we will start the approach trekking to Shisha Pangma Base Camp. Only then we will start discussing the strategy we will follow on our winter climb of Shisha.”

Winter or not

Simone Moro made no comments on Jean Christophe Lafaille claims to have just accomplished the first winter climb of Shisha Pangma.

Moro has stated that the ‘official’ winter is no other than that marked by calendar dates: from December 21 to March 21. Out of that period no summit can be considered done in the ‘winter’.

Jean Christophe Lafaille, who soloed Shisha Pangma and reached the summit last Saturday, instead assured on his website that all summits reached from December first are considered winter climbs.

Skip the paper - check the weather

Winter climbing is all about being bad ass. Don't miss the Adventure weather series this week "Winter climbing: The BAD chart" - and let the weather decide!

Up until now only 7 out of all 14 eight-thousanders have been winter climbed, all located, partially at least, in Nepal. All first winter accents were made by Polish climbers, (in Calendar winter), from Everest in 1980 to Lhotse in 1988 - the last time someone set foot on a virgin summit higher than 8000m during the winter.

Now, the Polish are back - with an Italian! Simone Moro, Piotr Morawski, Jacek Jawien, Dariusz Zaluski and Jan Szulc will repeat their winter attempt of last year.

Simone Moro, 37, is the driving force behind this current expedition. He has earlier summited Mount Everest, Broad Peak, Cho Oyu and Lhotse. In the summer of 2003, he climbed on Nanga Parbat, Broad Peak and K2 with Denis and an all/star team. He opened a new partial route on the Diamir face of Nanga Parbat, though he did not reach the summit.

This past summer, Simone and Denis, along with Camos, reached the Kali Himal (Black Summit) of Baruntse, also known as the North Summit at 7014m via a new route up the North Face. After this acclimatization climb, they moved to Annapurna’s North Face. Simone had to turn back for health reasons, but Denis made the summit.

In 1996, Simone reached the N. Summit of Shisha Pangma. He is now attempting to make the first successful winter ascent of the peak, climbing via the South Face. Piotr Morawski, one of Simone’s partners, took part in the 2003 K2 winter expedition, led by Polish Krzysztof Wielicki.

Image of the team on Island Peak summit, courtesy of Simone Moro.

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