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Amadablam Difficulty

Published Date: 2020-06-30

Climbing Amadablam is just more than a climb. The first ascent (via the SW ridge) in mid 60's by a strong NZ/USA team. The north ridge fell toa talentedFrench team as late as 1979. In recent years more than thousand climbers have successfully climbed the mountain via the normal route SW ridge route.
Climbing Amadablam is technically difficult and a well mountaineering training and experience is required to attempt this peak, a technical route that requires 3500m of fixed ropes a followed by mixed snow and rock climbing. The last section to the summit involves ice climbing followed by a long steep snow slope: often ropes are employed all the way to the summit. The reasons for this are three-fold: safety, speed and success. Due to the technical nature of the route, ropes will be fixed for most of the climb above camp one. A good working knowledge of abseiling and use of mechanical ascenders (jumars) is mandatory; prior experience is required.
Objective dangers on the SW Ridge route is minimal, ice cliffs do not threaten it, the snow slopes are generally stable (with minimal avalanche risk), the rock is of good quality and the mountain is below the reach of jet stream winds. The route is extremely exposed and mistakes with rope work can be unforgiving. For this reason we have a low client: guide ratio and use experienced guides to keep you safely on track. Your guide(s) will be involved in the fixing of rope and the smooth running of the expedition but their primary concerns are client safety, best service and success.
High Camps and Climbing Routes
We establish three high camps above base camp to climb Amadablam but these days due to the high risk camping at Camp III, we might do only two high camps and do extra push for summit attempt and return.    
Base camp (4,600m):
Situated on a large meadow with a wonderful views of the Imja valley.
BC to Camp 1 (5,795m):
Our first real camp is only one and half-hours walk above Yak camp. This section is marked by rock cairns and involves boulder hopping and some easy scrambling. We sometimes fix couple of sections with rope to be used as a handrail.
Camp I to Camp 2 (5,980m):
This section of the route is usually rock climbing only, depending on the season. The granite is high quality and the moves fun, challenging and exposed but “do-able”. We follow a narrow ridge, switching back and forth on each side of the ridge. This is the hardest rock climbing of the entire route. In places the exposure is extreme and you are very thankful of the fixed ropes in place. Whilst it is generally easier not to pull on the ropes all the time if you are finding the going getting a bit too hard you can just rest on the fixed rope. You can also use your jumar to help you over the odd spot of difficulties. Most of the climbing on this section is traversing on rock, so good rock-climbing skills will help you move efficiently and quickly over this terrain.
Camp two: Situated on top of the Yellow Tower on a narrow platform this campsite is rather exposed and has fantastic views. If you dropped your cup from here it would probably land in base camp!
Camp II to Camp 3 (6,440m):
Now for the hardest snow and ice pitches of the route. We follow a system of steep snow and ice gullies up to join a feature called the Mushroom Ridge. Whilst the ridge itself is not as technical as the gullies leading up to it, the exposure here is palpable. It is a narrow, windy, snow mushroom-like ridge with giant Himalayan peaks in the background. This feature leads us up onto a small plateau at 6300 m, which serves the purpose of camp three. Camp three is in a cold and exposed position. The Sherpas will often use a full climbing rope to tie our tents down as the natural shape of the mountain can at times unfortunately funnel the wind to this location. It is however the only safe flat piece of real estate within range of the summit.
Summit day:

For the summit push, we keep open the two options either direct from Camp 2 to Summit and return or start from Camp 3. In 2006 Nov, all most half part of Camp 3 turned into avalanche since then its consider more risker to sleep overnight at Camp 3, therefore these days more than 80% of the climbers push their summit all the way from Camp 2 with extra push.  If we push from Camp 3 the initial route is to the right of the huge “dablam” (ice cliff), up a moderately steep slope, which is often iced. Once past this feature we move toward the centre of the face. The angle eases slightly and a couple of tough hours later we emerge on the summit (6,812m). The summit is the size of a tennis court and allows us to move around and take pictures. Five of the world’s six highest peaks are clearly visible with amazing close view of Mt. Everest, along with many other 7000m and lesser peaks filling the gaps.
Why to climb Amadablam?
  • It’s one of the technically difficult close to 7000m peak
  • An unforgettable and amazing trek to Khumubu valley   
  • Physically and mentally very tough and you need to be excellent with rock climbing, ice climbing and mountaineering skills.
  • Amadablam is perfect climbing trip for those looking for extra challenge and planning to take step for 8000m peaks.   
  • Dream Himalaya Adventures provides excellent logistic services along with  highly experienced Sherpa guides
Acclimatization climb to Island Peak (6,160m) or Lobuche peak (6119m)  

We offer an acclimatization climb to Island peak (6160m) or to Lobuche peak (6119m), this is an additional 3 to 5 days on top of normal plan to Amadablam but this trip maximized your summit success on Amadablam. Once we ascent the 6000m altitude either on Island peak or Lobuche, we don’t need to do acclimatization climb up to that altitude on Amadablam, which minimize some risk on Amadablam. Once we ascent one of the 6000m peak, then we possible push for summit attempt on Amadablam without extra acclimatization rotation, so for this strategy has been working well and successfully accomplished.   
Itinerary (Island Peak & Amadablam): 30 days
Day 01: Arrival in KTM, transfer to hotel& briefing
Day 02: Half day sightseeing and afternoon equipment checking and fitting
Day 03: Trek to Phakding (2,600m)
Day 04: Trek to Namche (3,440m)
Day 05: Acclimatization day in Namche to Khumjung/Khunde (3,800m)
Day 06: Trek to Tengbouche(3,905m)
Day 07: Dingbouche (4,410m)
DAY 08: Acclimatization day in Dingbouche up to 5,100m
DAY 09: Trek to Chukung (4,743m)
DAY 10: Acclimatization hiking to Chukkung ri (5,550m)
DAY 11: Trek to Island Peak base camp (4,970m)
DAY 12: Summit attempt and decent to base camp
DAY 13: Trek to Pangbouche (3,930m)
Day 14: Trek to Amadablam base camp (4,600m)
Day 15 - 24: Climbing Period
Day 25: Trek to Pangbouche
Day 26: Trek to Namche
Day 27: Trek to Lukla
Day 28: Fly to Kathmandu
Day 29: Free day in Kathmandu
Day 30: Int’l departure to home


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