Edu Marin is climbing the ‘Nameless Tower’ at the Trango Towers with the goal of free climbing the original route ‘Eternal Flame’ set in 1989.
Edu is supported by Miquel Mas Serrat and Marc Subirana
They will adapt plans if necessary as this is one ambitious climb!
We will keep up to date with it in this diary…
“Two days ago we managed to summit the Nameless Tower (6.239 meters). Despite being able to climb ‘Eternal Flame’, I still have six pitches to free climb. Now we are at the Base Camp and my fellow climbers have decided not to team with me in a new attempt to free climb the entire route. But I don’t give up!! 💪🏽 A Basque team with whom we have met on the expedition, Amaia and Julen, have offered to take part in a new attack in which I am going to give my best to achieve my goal. The conditions are difficult and the altitude is a limiting factor to perform at the best, but I have come here to make a dream come true and I do not want to leave with the feeling of not having done everything possible. We have six days ahead to reach the top of the Nameless Tower again, but this time free climbing the 650 meters of the ‘Eternal Flame’. Let’s go for it!! “
“We are looking forward to the next window of good weather. It doesn’t stop snowing, the temperature is around -10º and we can’t even leave the tent. We have only been able to climb a day and a half since we entered the wall but we have hope for the next few days. We are still strong!”
“Our attempt to free climb ‘Eternal Flame’ continues. We have installed a bivouac on the Sun Terrace (5.700m) and we are waiting for the next window of good weather. We calculate that we will be able to spend about 12 days on the wall. Bad weather has prevented us from trying all the pitches. The morning sun melts the snow and many of the cracks immediately get wet. We hope to have better conditions during this week. We have acclimatized well and for now the altitude is respecting us. Motivation remains high.”
“We have set up an advanced base camp near the start of Eternal Flame, at 5.000 meters. We are going to sleep here to continue acclimatizing. At the end of the week a window of good weather is foreseen until the 19th and our intention is to start climbing to reach the top that same day, leaving the most difficult pitches pending for a new attack. From that day on, the forecast is for snow and cold. We want to sleep on the wall for a free climbing try when conditions improve. At the moment, the meteorology is complicated and we think that some cracks may be with ice. We will keep you updated.”
“This morning we go to Askole to start the trekking that will take us to the place where we will install the base camp, under the Trango Towers. We will try to do the trekking in three days and arrive at BC on the 11th. Pakistan, the indomitable land, is undoubtedly an arid country surrounded by mountain ranges and great mountains. Their people have welcomed us with open arms. I am ready to face this ascent with Miquel Mas and Marc Subirana”
Miquel added – “After doing the “Karakorum High way” we are already in Skardu and heading towards Askole! All very slow but very exciting! In a few days we will have the Torre del Trango to play!”
“We are already in Skardu, the gateway to the Karakorum mountain range. We had to get here by plane but it was impossible to fly and we had to make by road. From here we will go to Askole, were we will start trekking to the Trango Towers base camp. Every day we are closer to the walls.”
“All ready to leave tomorrow for Pakistan, it will surely be an unforgettable experience! We will be in extreme situations, climbing at more than 6,000 meters of altitude, we feel prepared and we go with the best material. Thanks to everyone for the encouragement we will keep you informed.”
“We leave for Pakistan this Sunday, it will be a minimalist expedition, 37 days in total. Obviously it is very little time to acclimatize and carry out the activity, taking into account that the previous expeditions were 2 to 3 months.
Our main objective is to try to free the original route and if it is really impossible we will repeat Alex Huber’s variant.
There is a factor that we cannot control and that we totally depend on luck, it is the weather and the conditions of the wall but there is only one way to get to that top, trying!!”
“‘Eternal Flame’ is considered a big wall benchmark. It was opened by Wolfgang Güllich, Kurt Albert, Christof Stiegler and Milan Sykora in 1989. The route is located on the Trango Towers, specifically the Nameless Tower, above the 6.000 meters of altitude.
“The original route has never been free climbed. Iker and Eneko Pou tried it in 2005, but they had to open an alternative 8a pitch (top roping it) to climb the most difficult part of the route. In August 2009, the Huber brothers, Thomas and Alex, found another way to reach the summit, opening another alternative pitch, graded as a 7c+, and reached the summit.
“Our goal is to free climb the route as the Güllich and Albert team established. An ambitious plan into the thin air, above 6.000 meters of altitude.
“On the other hand, we want to explore the possibilities to open a new route there. First we want to try to free climb ‘Eternal Flame’ and then find a line for the 2022 season. This is the most ambitious goal and what motivates me to travel to Pakistan.
“Do you imagine to climb an 8b/8c route above the 6.000 meters of altitude? It would be an alpinism historical achievement. To open this path, we need to recognize the area first and climb there along an established route.”