"TRANGO 2008: THE FREE DREAM! TO FREE CLIMB THE WORLD’S HARDEST MOUNTAIN TOWER
The above words have been used to present the Trango 2008 Expedition!
These is a truly European expedition composed by the British Gaz Parry
and Jerry Gore
, the French Denis Roy
and Pierre Muller
and the Polish David Kaslikowski
and Eliza Kubaska
the Trango tower
The Trango Expedition 2008
by Gaz Parry
On the 26th of August a truly European team of climbers will leave the UK with one aim on their minds, to free climb The Eternal Flame route on Trango Tower. Also known as the Nameless Tower the 6,239m high east face is home to some of the best and most challenging multi pitch routes on the planet.
There are three objectives for the expedition. A free ascent of The Eternal Flame, a Free Ascent of the Slovenian Route and a new route on Trango Monk. The main aim will be to free climb the 35 pitch 800m Eternal Flame route on Trango Tower. The route was originally climbed in 1989 by the legendary team of Wolfgang Gullich and Kurt Albert along with Stiegler and Sykora and takes a line left of the Yugoslav route on the South-East Face.
Jerry met Kurt and Wolfgang at the K2 Motel in Skardu at the start of their 1989 adventure. Jerry was leading an expedition to climb some other rock pillars above the nearby Biafo Glacier. Ever since this chance encounter Jerry has vowed to return. The amount of aid on the Eternal Flame has been slowly reduced to two unfree pitches. Denis Burdet wrote about the Eternal Flame in the Dec 2003 Alpinist Magazine. “Take all of the best granite climbs you have done and put them all on one route and that is the Eternal Flame. Denis and his team reduced the aid to two pitches.
A lower pendulum pitch will require a new variation line to be climbed if it is to go free and a higher pitch was almost freed in 2005 by the talented Pou brothers. They managed to climb the hardest section of the Pou Variation pitch at around 8a but failed on the easy crack due to extremely poor conditions. Will the pitches go free is one of the biggest unanswered questions of big wall free climbing. If the team are able to complete their goal it will fulfill the original dream of Gullich and Albert to establish the greatest free climb on the planet.
what a balance!
British climbing has had a long association with this 1000m spire. The first ascent was made by, Martin Boysen, Mo Anthoine, Malcolm Howells and Joe Brown back in 1976. In 1995 Adam Wainright and Paul Pritchard repeated the Yugoslav route despite the poor conditions they encountered.
You can follow the story at www.trango08.com
and share in the completion of the Free Dream.