Dan Mazur Leads New Route Attempt on Mustagh Ata
June 2 - July 15, 2000
Thursday, July 27, 2000
"If Walter or I came down with the same affliction, I wonder if we could have carried on with the same conviction as Dan did that day...."
[Click for the Latest Dispatch]
Join MountainZone.com this summer as we follow the progress of an expedition attempting to climb Mustagh Ata, a 7500-meter peak in western China, northeast of K2. The team, led by Himalayan veteran Dan Mazur, seeks to climb a major new route on the East Ridge of the peak. This route is steep and subject to storms, necessitating a quick ascent. To prepare for this swift ascent, the team will acclimatize by climbing other objectives in the area, including the normal route on the west side of Mustagh Ata.
Last year, Mazur led a reconnaissance of the new route. The team traversed the backside of the Mustagh Ata complex, hiked to the base of the new route, then crossed the valley, climbed the 6000-meter Tokoruk Peak, and took extensive photos of the entire route.
Afterwards, they hiked around the bottom of the peak, explored all potential approaches and then climbed to the summit of Mustagh Ata via the normal route. From the summit, the team was able to look down onto the East Ridge from above.
To verify the route had not been climbed, the team wrote letters to various officials and made contact with a Japanese team that reached 6000 meters on the East Ridge. Mazur has climbed with one of the Japanese climbers who tried the route, Masanori Suzuki, who said that his group turned back at 6000 meters.
The team departed for the climb in late May and will climb until late July.