Friday, April 24, 2009

K2 2009 Field Touring Alpine led by Fabrizio Zangrilli

I am very pleased to announce that I will be leading Field Touring Alpine's K2 Expedition this summer. For further information or to join the trek to base camp please email me at


Altitude: 8,611M/28,250ft Location: Karakorum, Pakistan

The K2 component of the expedition is by invitation only, with the application process being open likely only until the month of March. Later applications will be considered on a case by case basis. Thank you.




10 June - 14 August, 2009


BC services only USD$please call


Base camp support, helicopter, medical and approach support (with or without permit inclusion) is also available as a separate option for experienced (only) independent teams - please contact us for details.


All services Islamabad - Islamabad

Positions Open:

15 per trip

FTA and K2

This will be our 6th expedition to Broad Peak and second to K2 and will be led by a highly experienced team of western guides and local HAPs. We have extensive experience in the Karakorum, running more expeditions and treks here than any other operator in the world, and will be engaging the most sought after and qualified Pakistani HAPs. In 2006 we had a number of members reach to near the 8000m mark on K2 and gained significant knowledge of the mountain. We look forward to applying all that we learned to our second effort in 2009.

Why K2/Broad Peak with FTA?

No other operator has the recent experience or history that we do on Broad Peak, and our expeditions have proven her to be a good first time venue for aspiring 8000m alpinists, with reasonable summit rates if the weather is
clement. This program has been priced to give climbers an affordable opportunity to test their skills and endurance on arguably mountaineering’s greatest objective: K2. If you aspire to climb classic Himalayan 8,000ers, in a remote and stunning setting, and with quality back-up and expert leadership, then we invite your application for this once-in-a-lifetime 2009 expedition.

High Altitude Warning

During the ultra high altitude components of our 8000m expeditions (climbing legs above 7000m) the member accepts and fully understands that the level and quality of support and guidance is exponentially reduced the higher the member/team goes. Climbing on the world’s highest peaks is a potentially dangerous undertaking, and while we operate with safety as the highest priority, and have enjoyed a fatality free 14 year history in Pakistan, it must be understood by members that there are risks and dangers that neither leaders or members have any control over. Members need to be aware of these risks and accept their presence as being inherent to the pursuit of the world’s highest summits

The Cesen Route (SSE Spur) on K2

This season our first route preference if the conditions are good will be via the Cesen Route - the lesser climbed SSE spur first claimed by Alpinist Tomo Cesen. The Slovenian was climbing without a permit, so there was no publication about the new line and relatively little information has circulated about it in the years since.

The 4000 meter long Cesen route (also dubbed the ‘Basque route’ or ‘Spanish Route’), follows a spur, just on the right side of the South face, which leads to the shoulder at 7800m, where it joins the Abruzzi Spur route, above camp 3. It has been said that the route is technically slightly more demanding than the Abruzzi, but safer if the conditions are good.

Mark Sheen, a long time FTA member who was with us in 2006 on Broad Peak, last season climbed up the Cesen and then down the Abruzzi as a member of the Norit team. He did in fact on his summit push climb clear from BC to Camp 4 alone and in just 2 days in very good conditions. It is his opinion if the route presents the same or as close to as last season, then it is without a doubt the preferred option for this side of the mountain. He said “While it is marginally steeper in a few places, there was very very little avalanche danger, and just one spot that spat out a few rocks in the midday sun. There was also good camp-sites for up to 8 or so climbers”. He was adamant that if he were to return, it would be via the SSE spur.

A large image gallery on Mark’s ascent is being prepared for members of our 2009 expedition on the FTA site. If conditions don’t favor the Cesen on our arrival, the expedition will have the flexibility to alter routes.

Regardless of the route we will be on, the style of our climb will require that members are able to take an active part in preparing the route above C2 and carrying a share of the tent/stove/fuel loads.

Joining The Expedition & Further Information

If you are interested in joining our expedition we invite you to complete the form below and we will reply to you as soon as possible.

Please note the K2 component of the expedition is by invitation only, with the application process being open likely only until the month of March. Later applications will be considered on a case by case basis. Thank you.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Erehwon Outdoor Expo/Earth Sports Fest May 2-3, 2009

A Year of Alpine Traveling 2008/9: Slovenia to K2 and Points in between

Travel with Fabrizio Zangrilli as he shares breathtaking photos and video that encapsulate one year of alpine climbing and guiding Around the world! Adventures include winter alpine climbing in Slovenia, an attempt to climb a new route on the Rupal Face of Nanga Parbat, a dramatic rescue on Pumori and Colorado ice and Mixed.

Earth Sports Fest

May 2-3 at our Bannockburn Store Parking lot at 2585 Waukegan Road in Bannockburn Green. Top company reps will be there to show new gear, slide show presentations from pro atheletes from The North Face and Marmot, and fun under the giant tent. Free to the public.

MAY 2-3 at our Bannockburn store parking lot at 2585 Waukegan Road in Nannockburn Green. Top company reps will be there to show new gear, slide show presentations from pro athletes from The North Face and Marmot, and fun under the giant tent. Free to the public.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Ice Photo Shoot with Claudia Lopez:

Please visit to contact Claudia. She can jug ropes, endure long days in the cold, carry gear and make an 11 hour photo shoot very enjoyable. I was very lucky the Marmot PR Department asked her to shoot some photos of me, as all other photographers have had trouble making me look pretty. These are just a couple of snaps she sent over. These photos were shot on two different days this April; in RMNP and Boulder, CO. Big thanks also go out to Tom Halicki for his amazing patience belaying in the cold all day for the ice photos - and for the amazing BBQ ribs after!!

Photos Courtesy Claudia Lopez --

Monday, April 13, 2009

Colorado Ice Climbing Conditions April 13: Hessie Chimney and Hidden Falls

On Saturday I was in RMNP and it was full on winter conditions, so much snow and cold. Sunday I was getting wet at Hessie Chimney with Jordan. Dave and his partner back off Hessie, while I did battle with the stien pulls on the crack that leads to the mixed thing on the left. Nobody had success, but we all had fun, very atmospheric with snow falling late in the afternoon. Today I was at Hidden Falls, and the ice was fat. Warm, with a bit of a facade to the ice, if you go be careful!

Sherpa Journeys invites you… to a celebration of Himalayan Culture

Hosted by:
Tibet’s Restaurant, Louisville, Colorado
Thursday, May 7, 2009
6:00 to 9:00 pm

Please join us for a celebration of authentic Himalayan food and culture. The evening focuses on the unique, diverse cultures of the high Himalaya and trekking in the Everest Region of Nepal. Special guests include Passang Lamu Sherpa, of the youngest women to climb Mt. Everest and 1st woman to teach climbing in Nepal, Lama Lhoppon Rechung, Tibetan Lama-Monk, and Tenzin Dhongyal, President of Colorado Tibetans Organization.

Evening Schedule:

6:00 Social: an excellent opportunity to mingle with local Sherpas, Nepalese and Tibetans -- including above mentioned special guests

6:30 Himalayan Buffet: Authentic, delicious, healthy Tibetan/Nepali food

7:00 Presentation: Overview of Nepalese, Tibetan and Sherpa Culture

7:30 Raffle: Win a Marmot sleeping bag & other giveaways

7:45 Guest speaker Tenzin Dhongyal, President of Colorado Tibetans Organization discussing “Perspective and Aspirations of Young Generation of Tibetans”

8:00 Lecture on Sherpa Culture by Kathleen Haggerty, the owner and president of Sherpa Journeys and an introduction to Tibetan Buddhism by special guest Lama Lhoppon Rechung of Tibet with artifacts from region.

9:00 You may stay as long as you like to visit and ask questions to our Himalayan friends about their culture and homeland until closing at 10pm.

$15 early registration (Pay on
Or $20 at door
Includes dinner and soft drinks and chai (see next page for more info)

For more information, please call Kathleen at 303-469-1987

Buffet Dinner Includes: Chicken Curry, Biriyani (stir fried vegetables and rice) Saag (creamed spinach), Naan (flat bread), Tibetan noodles with vegetables, Dal (lentil soup) and kheer (rice pudding), and all you can drink chai (regular or decaf) or soft drinks. Juice and alcoholic beverages not included but may be ordered on a cash basis.

Sherpa Journeys, LLC. is a Colorado-based trekking company specializing in Nepal’s Everest Region. We support sustaining the Sherpa and other local cultures as well as tourism which is the lifeblood of Nepal. We guide with professionalism and responsibility and respect to the environment, the porters and local villagers. Our guides in Nepal have over 30 years of experience guiding in their homeland and are wonderful people to travel with since they love to show westerners the peaks and rivers and their unique way of life. There is something special about being surrounded by the majesty of the highest mountains in the world and being a part of their beautiful culture--even if only for a brief stay. This journey is truly a place to find your own, true spirit. We will unveil our fall trekking and retreat program in Nepal as well.

Tibet’s Restaurant opened October 2008 and is majority owned by Nepalese/Sherpas. The walls are filled with artifacts which are compliments of Tibet’s Gallery in Boulder. These articles are for sale and have price tags on them. Take Highway 36 to McCaslin Blvd and go North about ½ mile past Dillan Road on the left to 321 McCaslin Blvd. (303) 665-2557.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Tragic News: Piotr Morawski

Newsflash: Piotr Morawski lost on Dhaulagiri

( Story updated 7:05 am CDT) Polish ace climber Piotr Morawski has perished on Dhaulagiri, local media have just reported...

Very sad news, Piotr was part of the group with Me, Peter Hamor, Dodo Kopold, Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, Daniel Bartsch, and David Gottler that tried to make a speed ascent of K2 via the Cesen in 2007. I did not know him well, but he was a very nice guy that was very strong in the mountains. My condolences to his family and friends.
Photo of Piotr on the Cesen, video clip of speed attempt - the team reached the shoulder and back down in 36 hours, 2007, by Fabrizio Zangrilli.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Colorado Ice Climbing Conditions April 03: Hessie Chimney, Nederland

Went back out to Hessie Chimney, Eldora, today. Snow was flying from early on and it was very atmospheric all day. Somebody had been up here since Tom and I were last here 4 days ago and today we met two guys scouting the route. Since the heavy snow in the afternoon on wednesday the chimney has filled in a bit and certainly has become a touch easier. The top of the first pitch was very wet and the top pitches (well both finishes) were drippy as well. It snowed most of the day while we were up there and the storm tonight will only make the ice come in fatter. Happy swinging. Email me if you know of any other fun ice/mixed that is in.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Colorado Ice Climbing Conditions March 31: Hessie Chimney, Nederland

It took a bit of work to get it done - three trips: to see if ice was in the chimney, then to see if it would hold more than one ascent, and then finally just doing it after figuring it had been cold enough to bond to the walls. There was alot of junk ice that needed clearing and the middle pillar (yesterday) was still not that solid (if this is your first M5 lead then buyer beware, it is not very physical but heady) and since the water had been running so much before the big dump of snow the lower cracks had iced up a bit. There is a fixed blue sling half way up a a few choice pins to clip. All in all a very fun route, the snow we are getting and this weeks forcasted cold temps will only make the route better. Enjoy and probably see you up there in the next couple of weeks.