It’s the second week of our long journey to K2 Basecamp and the ‘Savage Mountain’ is just around the corner. I’m still in a bit of disbelief at the scenery on this trek. The scale of the mountains is just unbelievable. Each campsite is dwarfed by 7000m and 8000m peaks right from the first day but as we get deeper and deeper into the trek the dramatic scenes are escalating.
Each afternoon we reach camp and our first instinct is to find a shower to wash our clothes and wash the dust off of our bodies. This has been getting harder and harder each day as the temperature is dropping and the glacial waters becoming near freezing. The first six days we managed the feat but after that, the shower was replaced with wet wipes.
Concordia is the T-intersection at the end of the Baltoro Glacier where we can spot the 8000m peaks of Broad Peak, K2, Gasherbrum IV. Numerous other notable six and seven-thousand-meter peaks loom amidst the mountainscape but these three 8000m peaks are the showstoppers.
I’ll never forget looking for the camps on K2. At first, I couldn’t see a thing but only after spotting a tiny speck with the binoculars did I truly realize the size of this mammoth mountain in comparison to the tents. It put everything into perspective.
Reaching the K2 basecamp was eye-opening. We were now amongst those attempting to climb the most dangerous mountain in the world. To watch these people walk about camp and feel the presence, drama and the situation was an incredible atmosphere. Visiting the K2 memorial, comprised of silver dinner plates with names carved into them was a reality-check on what mother nature and this mountain, in particular, are capable of.
We woke to snow on our last few nights at K2 Basecamp and back at Concordia before making the tough decision to head back down the Baltoro Glacier instead of crossing the more adventurous route along the Gondogoro Pass. That’s how it goes sometimes.
Completing this trek was another notch in the belt and gives me confidence heading into my next (higher) mountain adventure. I only had a mild headache on this one and everything was managed well so I’m looking forward to the next challenge.
These are my favorite photos from another week behind the lens in this awe-inspiring scenery of the Karakoram Mountain Range.