29,035ft, 8,848m – North East Ridge, Tibetan Side
From ABC the route continues up the East Rongbuk glacier then up the face to the North Col at 7000m where camp 1 is situated on snow. There is a long angled snow slope to 7,500m where we put camp 2 on a snow ledge. The route from C2 to C3 is up a series of rock and shingle steps, again all very easy terrain to walk on.Camp 3 will be at 7,900m on shingle platforms. From C3 the route traverses across a series of rock steps and then up medium angled snow slopes and then again on mixed rock and snow to the camp 4 at 8300m. This camp is normally on rock, but some years there is snow cover here. There will be a fixed rope from the neve to this point. Although you may not need this to assist with climbing it does however provide a safety line which isuseful when you are tired and when the wind is blowing. This route is traditionally very windy, especially between C2 and C3. The summit day is from C4. The route is up mixed rock and snow steps to the NE ridge. These steps are quite steep in places and require considerable care especially as you now have all of your bulky clothing and oxygen equipment on.
- Camp 1 (7,000m/23,660ft) up East Rongbuk glacier toward north col
- Camp 2 (7,400m/25,012ft) up long reasonable slope
- Camp 3 ( 7,900m/ 26,702ft) traditionally windy -up series of rock and shingle step-camp on rock
- Camp 4 (8,400m/28,392ft) traverse across a series of rock steps then up medium angles snow slopes then mixed rock & snow – camp on rock
The summit day is from C4. The route is up mixed rock and snow steps to the NE ridge. These steps are quite steep in places and require considerable care especially as you now have all of your bulky clothing and oxygen equipment on. The NE ridge is quite wide with small steps with little height gain until the First Step. The First Step is a short rock buttress which will be fixed with rope. Above here the climbing is more exposed but again without much height gain until the Second Step. The second step is across a series of small ledges which are sometimes snow covered, then around a large boulder and then up the ladder. Again, all of this section will be fixed with rope. Above this step there is again relatively gentle mixed ground until what is called the Third Step. Although not as serious as the previous steps, there is fixed rope to the col before the final summit snow slopes. These are quite steep and also have fixed rope to the rock buttress from where there is a short section of corniced ridge to the summit.