What Mountain Am I?

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Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Original Post - May 31, 2011 - 09:51pm PT
Simon hasn't provided us with a contest lately, so I thought I'd give it a try. What mountain is this? Where is it? What if any significance does it have?
Credit: Internets

Hint: Somewhat inspired by a remark in the http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/1513594/Everest-and-Lhotse-Summited-in-20-hours thread.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
May 31, 2011 - 10:03pm PT
That's that high point in the Henry Mountsins in Utah- now what is the name of that damn peak?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - May 31, 2011 - 10:14pm PT
Hint: Not Lembert Dome.
richross

Trad climber
May 31, 2011 - 10:36pm PT
If not Everest maybe Anderspurna?
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
May 31, 2011 - 10:37pm PT
Close, it's actually Andersperma.
yo

climber
a tied-off Tomahawk™
May 31, 2011 - 10:42pm PT
Formed during the Doninizoic Era.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - May 31, 2011 - 10:45pm PT
No postcards, but maybe I can send a ferocious bloodthirsty giant Canadian wolf. They're very huggable.
richross

Trad climber
May 31, 2011 - 10:46pm PT
Actually I thought the Anders were in South America?
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
May 31, 2011 - 11:25pm PT
Rich, they are; he just doesn't know it yet.
Gene

climber
May 31, 2011 - 11:39pm PT
The thing that keeps me awake at night is the tens of thousands of monks chanting ‘Ourom Gonna Pun You.’
ontheedgeandscaredtodeath

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:26am PT
I thought Nanga Parbat too.
Silver

Big Wall climber
Nor Nev
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:28am PT
Everyone knows thats Mt. Rose ski area. Reno local shred spot losers.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 12:36am PT
Another hint: There has been no recorded ascent.
Anastasia

climber
hanging from an ice pick and missing my mama.
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:37am PT
Mount Hugh Neave


Jennie

Trad climber
Elk Creek, Idaho
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:45am PT
Swargarohini ?
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:47am PT
Gauri Shankar
Next question?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 12:47am PT
Reilly's on the right continent, anyway.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jun 1, 2011 - 12:56am PT
How about Melungtse near Gauri?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 12:57am PT
Right range, wrong country.
Jennie

Trad climber
Elk Creek, Idaho
Jun 1, 2011 - 01:05am PT
Gasherbrum V ?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 01:12am PT
Not in the Karakourom, and both Gasherbrum V and Broad Peak have been climbed.

Edit: No one noticed my lovely pun! Though gf may have originated it.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 01:18am PT
Dragmarpo Ri is a most interesting looking mountain, but again, it's not in Nepal, and FWIW is higher.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 01:31am PT
A helpful honeybee dropped by to mention that Gasherbrum V hasn't been climbed, but that's not the peak.

It isn't Kabru, which was climbed in 1931 or so.

Hopefully the photo - not mine - is correctly identified by the source. I'd be chagrined to discover it was mislabelled. Should I find another one? I don't know that it'd help a lot.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 01:41am PT
Sorry - I was thinking of Kamet, not Kabru. My mis-speak. Not doing well on tangential facts tonight.

The mountain in the photo is neither Kamet nor Kabru, although the latter is closer geographically.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 01:56am PT
Another hint: It is considered a sacred mountain by the people of the area. But it's not Machuchupare, or in the Annapurna area - as mentioned, it's not in Nepal at all.
Jennie

Trad climber
Elk Creek, Idaho
Jun 1, 2011 - 02:00am PT
Kailas ?
zeta

Trad climber
Berkeley
Jun 1, 2011 - 02:02am PT
It's gotta be mt. Kailash in Tibet
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 02:06am PT
Ding ding! We have a winner. Donald has correctly identified the photo as being of Gangkhar Puensum, a 7,570 m high mountain in northern Bhutan, possibly on the Bhutan-Tibet border. It is probably the highest unclimbed mountain in the world, although a subsidiary summit has been ascended. And it will stay unclimbed for a while, as the Bhutanese no longer permit climbers on their peaks, all of which are considered holy, and who knows about access from Tibet.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangkhar_Puensum
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 1, 2011 - 02:35am PT
Gangkhar Puensum
Gangkhar Puensum
Credit: Internets
If you look closely, perhaps you can see the lonely goatherd in the foreground.

In a rare idle moment, I asked Mr. Google what the highest unclimbed mountain in the world is. This one popped up, and I thought it would be fun to have a contest. I wonder if donini knew all along, though?
mcreel

climber
Barcelona
Jun 1, 2011 - 03:46am PT
Shankyar Boti?
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jun 1, 2011 - 03:54am PT
vulcans thumb?
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 1, 2011 - 05:35am PT
This is frustrating. I just spent an hour trying to find out who Gangkar Puensum was sacred to and no luck so far. The name itself translates literally as "mountain white - siblings three". Who the three sacred siblings are however I can not discover. The nearby Jomolhari is the home of one of the five Tseringma sisters also associated with Gauri Shankar and Everest. However, there are five Tseringma sister goddesses so three doesn't add up.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 2, 2011 - 01:50am PT
I was just going with what google says. Apparently all mountains are sacred in Bhutan, and can no longer be climbed. As half the mountain is in Tibet, there may be possibilities from that side.

Bump for the highest. Isn't the highest the best?
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 2, 2011 - 01:57am PT
Himalayan peaks are sacred because they are homes to gods and goddesses. There is a definite reason why Gangkar Puensum is sacred and often, the deities involved predate Buddhism.

Many of these deities also required blood sacrifices in the past up until their conversion to Buddhism. I never can decide if these local mountain gods have reverted and that's why so many die on the mountains or if the climbers subconsciously understand the tradition and sacrifice themselves. Either explanation seems possible.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 3, 2011 - 12:51am PT
The early religious history of Tibet concerns the psychic battles between Guru Rinpoche, whom the Sherpas call their superhero, and the bloodthirsty mountain gods and demoness who ruled Tibet. In the 7th century, Guru Rinpoche, who was a noted tantric master from India, did battle and subdued them all, converting the Tibetans to Buddhism in the process. In the case of the demoness, he planted Buddhist temples on her head, hands, and feet, and back to keep her pinned down and those temples still exist.

About five centuries later, the second most famous Tibetan saint, Milarepa, had to resist both the temptations and the torments of the Tseringma goddesses who seemed to have backslid, so he reconverted them to Buddhism. One of these goddesses lives on Everest. She richly blesses the Sherpas but sometimes I wonder if she hasn't back slid again in regard to the foreigners.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 01:23am PT
from High Asia
Jill Neate
ISBN-0-89886-278-8

pages 20-21

GANGKAR PUENSUM
(Kangkar Pünzum Rinchita)

Height: 7,547 metres (subsidiary peaks, 7,532 metres and 7,516 metres)
Lat./Long. : 28º06' 90º25'


This peak lies in a remote and virtually unmapped region of northern Bhutan. A Himalayan Association of Japan expedition, led by Michifumi Ohuchi, first attempted the south ridge in autumn 1985. From camp at 5,220 metres the upper part of the ridge appeared to be very difficult. A reconnaissance of the west ridge showed it to be no easier so they returned to their first choice. After traversing a snow dome to a col, followed by a level section of saw-tooth ridge (the 'Dinosaur'), there were two steep rock steps before Camp III could be placed at 6,880 metres. Illness then forced a retreat. An American expedition which had permission at the same time for the southeast and east ridges was diverted into a valley from which the peak could not be reached. The followirg year an Österreichischer Alpenverein expedition, led by Sepp Mayerl, fared no better on the south ridge, being hampered by severe monsoon weather.

In autumn 1986 a British expedition, led by Steven Berry, was defeated principally by constant bitterly cold winds. The walk-in started from Bumthang on the main east-west route across Bhutan and it was not until the sixth day, when they reached base camp (5,050 metres), that they had their first spectacular view of the peak. During the following week, advanced base camp was set up (5,500 metres) and four of the team began climbing and fixing rope to Camp I. The route largely followed that of previous attempts, across two steep rock sections - the first at the top of the 'Ramp' and the second at the top of the Japanese gully - before gaining the south ridge proper. This avoided the lower part of the Japanese gully threatened by séracs, which caused an accident to one of the 1985 Japanese party. The ridge was followed to Camp I which was set up at 6,250 metres.

Heavy snowfall between 4-7 October meant a withdrawal to base camp to conserve supplies on the mountain. Once this had cleared the skies remained clear but it was extremely windy and cold, making climbing very difficult. However, Camp I was re-occupied by 13 October. The route then crossed the top of the snow dome (6,700 metres) and the heavily corniced knife-edge 'Dinosaur' ridge to the foot of the first rock buttress where Camp II was placed. Even on the days when climbing was possible the strong winds made fixing rope on the ridge a dangerous business. After ten days they were ready to go for the summit. Because of the wind problem the plan was to traverse across the face below the left side of the ridge and then climb alpine-style up the face. On 23 October Jeff Jackson and Steven Monks began the task of fixing rope across the face but steep hard ice and the wind caused them to give up after only 120 metres. It was clearly time to abandon the climb.

For the time being permits are no longer available for this peak, partly because the local people believe that the gods have been angered by the four attempts on it made so far.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Jun 3, 2011 - 01:24am PT
Nice one Anders! Thanks for that puzzle.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 01:59am PT
Bhutan For the Well-Heeled Tourist
When Steve Berry led an attempt to climb Gangkar Punsum last year, the highest mountain in Bhutan, the expedition was accompanied by a support trek organised by Maggie Payne. Both Steve and Maggie are putting their experience to good use this year by offering trekking holidays to the little kingdom that still fiercely restricts the number of tourists it will allow in. Hardly surprising, therefore, that trips to Bhutan do not come cheap. The one organised by Maggie Payne (with David Oswin Expeditions) for the Royal Geographical Society and to be led by Doug Scott, runs to nearly £2,800 for 22 days. For that, you visit the capital Thimpu and trek around Bumthang in the centre of the country. Himalayan Kingdoms, the Bristol-based company set up recently by Steve Berry and two friends, will do a 24-day holiday to the mountains north of Thimphu for a couple of hundred less. A two week trip to the Base Camp of Chomolhari, Bhutan's second highest peak, will cost from £1,900, as will a trek into the remote Dagala mountains, conducted by Steve Bell.

Steve Berry has led five Himalayan expeditions although he would describe himself only as a very average climber. His most publicised ascent remains the Bristol and West Building for Jim'll Fix lt! His partners in Himalayan Kingdoms are John Knowles, businessman and traveller, and West Country mountaineer Steve Bell, who had made winter ascents of most of the classic alpine north faces before he was 21, has visited Antarctica and Annapurna III and for the past five years has been in the Royal Marines. Last year he went to Saser Kangri with an lndo-British military expedition and next year is to take part in the West Ridge of Everest with the British Services Expedition, going straight on from there to Bhutan to lead his first trek for the new company.

Mountain 120 page 39
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 3, 2011 - 02:15am PT
Some friends did a trek in Bhutan a few years ago, and it sounds like a fascinating place. Archery is the national sport of the Thunder Dragon Kingdom, and their main measure of achievement is Gross National Happiness. (Not all is sweetness and light, as they've been ejecting those of non-Bhutanese ancestry. Though being stuck between India and China must be a challenge.) Anyway, you have to pay a substantial per diem, simply for being a tourist in Bhutan. (All-inclusive - you pay for everything up front, including accommodations, travel, porters, food, guides, and government fees.) Only organized groups are allowed, at least outside Thimphu, the capital.

The government's website is at http://www.bhutan.gov.bt/government/index_new.php

A semi-official tourism website says that the minimum per diem during high season is US$200 per person. Sounds like it's a main source of foreign exchange. http://www.kingdomofbhutan.com/visitor/visitor_.html
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:22am PT
In 1985 there were two attempts, both in Autumn, to climb Kankar Punzum (7,541m), the highest mountain in Bhutan. The Himalayan Association of Japan expedition of ten arrived at Base Camp on 31st August. They attempted the Central (South) Ridge of Kankar Punzum. They gave up temporarily because of the difficulties, and turned their attentions to the West Ridge, which proved no easier and so they returned to the South and reached a height of 6,880m on the 30th October. The next day one of the members succumbed to pulmonary oedema. All the members were needed to evacuate the sick climber, which they managed to do, but then they decided to give up as they considered the climb too dangerous.

During this period the Explorers Club of America launched an expedition to the mountain. They had great difficulty in actually reaching the base of Kankar Punzum. In fact they found it impossible to cross over from the Chamkar Chu approach valley designated by the BTC. This expedition consisted of some of America's most experienced high altitude climbers, such as John Roskelley, Rick Ridgeway and Phil Trimble, but they had to satisfy themselves with climbing a number of peaks below 6,000 m east of the Chamkar Chu glacier between the 30th September and 5th October. It was a very disappointed and disgruntled team which arrived back in Thimpu.

A sixteen man Japanese expedition was more successful further west on Massa Kang (~7,200 m). On 13th October, Yokoyama, Hitomi, Nakayama and Tsukihara, climbed to the summit via the North East Spur 4 1/2 weeks after arriving at Base Camp (4,900m). On the 14th October, four more climbers reached the summit and another four on the 15th. Their altimeter put the summit at 6,800m.

Sepp Mayerl returned to Bhutan in 1986 to lead an Austrian expedition, this time to try Kankar Punzum. They too attempted the South Ridge but failed 200 metres below the Japanese high point. They reported only two days out of 21 on the mountain when the weather was at all reasonable. Snowfall was at times 50 cms. They retreated because of avalanche danger on 26th August.

A British (Bristol) expedition to Kankar Punzum established Base Camp on 25th September. Steve Findlay and Lydia Bradey (NZ) did most of the lead climbing with the help of old Japanese and Austrian fixed ropes. Steve Monks and Geoff Jackson put in a fine final effort but by then (20th October) although the skies were clear, the incessant winds which had plagued the expedition were now causing frostbite, and so the attempt was abandoned by the leader Stephen Berry some 50 metres below the Japanese highpoint. Since 1986 this mountain has been taken off the list of peaks available for climbing due to the problems of yak transport and communications in bad weather. This British Expedition was evacuated from Base Camp by helicopter.

Mountain 125
pages 22-23
from "Bhutan - Jitchu Drake" by Doug Scout
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:32am PT
BHUTAN
A team of Americans led by Phil Tremble and including such notables as Chouinard, Ridgeway, Roskelley, Tomkins, etc., obtained permission to climb Kankar Punzum. Unfortunately they could not get permission to walk up the valley which led to the mountain! They ended up climbing smaller peaks from 5500m to 6000m in the Chamkar Chu valley.

Mountain 108 page 14
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:41am PT
1985
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:50am PT
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:51am PT
why does every mountain have to be climbed?
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jun 3, 2011 - 02:57am PT
why don't you ask Phil Trimble?
http://www.law.ucla.edu/faculty/all-faculty-profiles/emeritiprofessors/Pages/phillip-r-trimble.aspx
report back here...
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jun 3, 2011 - 10:56am PT
quite the cast of characters on that thing back in the eighties!

The Bhutanese are no dumbies, it seems.
Stewart Johnson

climber
lake forest
Jun 3, 2011 - 12:05pm PT
namche barwa?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 3, 2011 - 09:54pm PT
Thanks everyone, especially Ed and Jan, for your contributions. I've learnt a bunch of stuff.

Namche Barwa was long the highest unclimbed mountain in the world, at the east end of the Himalayas, in the great bend of the Tsangpo. IIRC, the Japanese climbed it some years ago. Bet it wasn't cheap, and definitely hard to get to.

Nanga Parbat, at the west end of the great ranges, rises from the Indus River to the summit, something like 7,000 m in 15 km, and it's similar at the other end. Serious topography.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 4, 2011 - 01:19am PT
Bhutan actually gets most of its revenue for providing hydro electric power to India. The reason they charge tourists and climbers so much is to keep the riff raff away. The prime minister is quoted as saying they've seen what happened in Nepal and don't want to repeat that.

Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 4, 2011 - 01:21am PT
Himalayan people say that if you want your children, livestock or crops to grow, you worship the mountain gods. If you are concerned about your next reincarnation and the quest for enlightenment, you pray to Buddhist gods.

There have been a number of cases in the Himalaya where local people prevented climbing in spite of official permission since they believe it angers the gods who then cause misfortune for the surrounding locals. When Tasker and Boardman climbed the lower summit of Tseringma/Gauri Shankar, they stopped 30 feet short of the summit and bowed to the goddess and no ill effects were reported (See Boardman's book, Sacred Summits).

However, a couple of weeks after Roskelly trampled around on the highest summit of Gauri Shankar, a glacial lake on her flanks burst and the ensuing flood in Rolwaling killed one woman and seriously injured two others and they've been having glofs ever since. They've also been petitioning the Nepalese government to put Tseringma off limits ever since.
ß Î Ø T Ç H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Jun 4, 2011 - 02:42am PT
What Mountain Am I?
I'm some obscure little boulder that isn't worth climbing.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 2, 2011 - 02:22am PT
Should we have another contest sometime soon? It seems that time of year.

Don't forget, you can start your own contest.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 20, 2012 - 01:01am PT
I shall report back in due course

I wonder when Donald will report in? Is he busy walking his border collie - more accurately, is the border collie busy walking him?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 20, 2012 - 02:27am PT
What!? You've been posting to political threads again, haven't you?

HAVEN'T YOU?

FOCUS, man! Think like a border collie, laser eyes on the target, undivertable.
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