9 11 2011
Mick Fowler and Dave Turnbull have succeeded in making the first ascent of Gojung (6310m) – also known as Mugu Chuli – in the Himalaya. Mick and Dave, who is the chief executive of the British Mountaineering Council, took four days to climb the mountain via a technical central ice couloir line on the imposing west face. They then traversed the summit ridge and continued north, making the first ascent of a second, unnamed 6264m peak, before descending west to the upper reaches of the glacier from which they had started.
“This was a brilliant outing – one of the best I have done. It had all of the right ingredients to make a great trip – remote area, challenging to get to, interesting culture, lots of eye opening sights. And that was before reaching the mountain.
“The climb itself also had exactly the criteria that attract me. There was wonderful, technically challenging climbing, it was objectively safe, with an unclimbed, eye catching line leading directly to a similarly unclimbed summit, and there was a different route of descent. We were even able to add a subsidiary first ascent on the way down.
“Add in incidents such as crashed aircraft (the airline that we flew in with had no active planes at all by the time we flew out!), and amazing landslides from the heavy monsoon that at one point looked as if they would stop us even getting to the mountain, and we had a full selection of memorable moments. To overcome them all and achieve exactly what we set out to do – and find the climb even better than we had expected – has to make it all add up to one of the best and most enjoyable trips I have been on.”
Gojung stands in the Kapthang range on the Nepal/Tibet border and was first noticed in 2008 by a Spanish team who referred to it as ‘outstanding’ and made an unsuccessful attempt on it in 2009.
Mick Fowler is a key member of the Berghaus athlete team and plays an active role in the development of our latest technical products. Both Mick and Dave used clothing and equipment from Berghaus’ latest Extrem range, and tested prototypes of products that are being developed for future seasons.