The second highest mountain in the world, K2 (aka Chhogori) has never been summited during the winter. Now a team of Polish climbers are attempting the first winter ascent of the “Savage Mountain”.
This month, during the worst season of the year, a 13-member team of veteran Polish climbers will tackle the mountain’s unique challenges. More than 100 porters have already carried more than a ton of equipment to set up a base camp for this expedition. The team is ready to hole up at the base for up to 65 days, waiting for a a good weather window to make a push from the base at 5,000 meters to the summit at 8,611 meters (28,251 ft).
Fun Fact: Polish climbers have long been regarded among the best alpinists, particularly in cold conditions.
The mountain was first summited in 1954. Since than only 306 souls have stood on the summit, compared to Everest which has seen more than 4,500 summits. With a death toll of 77, about one person dies on the mountain for every four who summit.
Three teams have tried to summit K2 in winter but none have succeeded.