On October 23, French alpinists Mathieu Detrie, Pierre Labbre, Mathieu Maynadier, and Jerome Para climbed a new line to the top of the south face of Gaurishankar, a mountain honoured by both Hindus and Buddhists as one of the most holy.
Its twin peaks rise from the Rolwaling Himal, along the Tibetan-Nepalese border. Its Hindi name, Gaurishankar, is a combination of the shorter south summit (Gauri; 7010m) and the north summit (Shankar; 7134m).
In Hindu tradition, Gauri is the fair or golden goddess and Sankar is a manifestation of Shiva, the god of destruction. 'True to its name, Gaurishankar appears unapproachable, a giant mountain of staggering beauty but, unlike most Himalayan peaks of its size, it offers no reasonable route of ascent,' American climber Al Read wrote in the 1980 American Alpine Journal.
For the Buddhist Nepalese, the mountain is called Jomo Tseringma and the southern summit is respected as their holiest mountain. The north summit was climbed for the first time in 1979, and there have only been 2 further recorded ascents. The French team climbed their line in 3 days, but didn't continue all the way to the summit, just the top of the face. They graded the line ED and called it 'Peine Prolongee'.
Expedition FB Page (in French) https://www.facebook.com/pages/Gaurishankar-project-2013/154890548051205
Good video of Himalayan Climbing https://vimeo.com/58149160 Expedition Website http://gaurishankar-project.tumblr.com/
Director: Charlie Boscoe
Producer: Charlie Boscoe
Athletes: Mathieu Detrie, Pierre Labbre, Mathieu Maynadier, Jerome Para
French Team Climb Gaurishankar's South Face | EpicTV Climbing Daily, Ep. 168
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