Alex Txikon spent Christmas Day at Annapurna Camp 2. The Basque mountaineer, who seeks to crown this ‘eight thousand’ in winter, has advanced to 5,600 meters of altitude after starting early in the morning from Camp 1. The path has confronted them with three sections with waist-deep snow in which they have used longer than expected to make a mark.
Las weather conditions are good, although quite windy. The idea of the expedition is to continue climbing to accelerate an attack on the summit as much as possible before the end of the week. Its access route is the North Face route, which the Frenchmen Maurice Herzog and Louis Lachenal traveled in 1950.
He December 22 Txikon arrived at Annapurna Base Camp (4,200 meters), just with the beginning of astronomical winter. The next day he reached Camp 1 together with the members of the expedition, the Italian Mattia Conte, Andrés Navamuel, photographer and mountaineer, and Javi. A day earlier, the Nepalese Chhepal, Ang Gyalu, Passan Nurbu, Magkpa, Mig Temba, Lakpa and Pemba had arrived.
He Annapurna has not been trampled in winter for almost 37 years. On February 3, 1987, Poles Jerzy Kukuczka and Artur Hajzer set foot on the summit in an expedition that also included Krzysztof Wielicki and Wanda Rutkiewicz, but they did not reach the summit. That same year, the Japanese Noboru Yamada, Toshiyuki Kobayashi, Yasuhira Saito and Teruo Saegusa crowned Annapurna on December 20. For purists it would not be a fully winter summit as it was achieved one day before the start of astronomical winter.
The Basque mountaineer already crowned this peak in 2010 in spring on the Edurne Pasabán expedition. On February 26, 2016, together with Simone Moro and Ali Sadpara, he was the first to cross Nanga Parbat (8,125 m) in winter.after trying without success in 2015. This 2023 he achieved the winter of Manaslu (after having tried in 2021 and 2022).
“There is a tense calm in the air since we arrived here, like treacherous weather even though we see little precipitation. “We will have to move quickly,” Txikon told MARCA. shortly before reaching Base Camp.