Close this search box.

Txikon puts an end to his winter attempt on Annapurna: “To stay would be reckless”.

Alex Txikon ended his attempt to summit Annapurna (8,091 meters) in winter. “The Annapurna has told us enough, we have tried, we have the strength and desire, but perhaps I lack the hunger to summit, having achieved the Manaslu summit a year ago,” says the Basque climber.

After more than a month and a half since the start of the expedition, also composed of Chhepal, Magkpa, Ang-gyalu, Mayla, MigTemba, Lakpa, Tashi, Moeses, Mattia Conte and Andr茅s Navamuel, the challenge of climbing an eight-thousander whose summit has not been reached in this season since 1987 comes to an end.

“I can’t afford to expose my companions any more, and so, after talking it over and meditating on it all morning, we have decided on a guaranteed yes to life, and we will leave behind our pretensions of continuing to attempt it . Everyone here is mainly here for me, and if I go, that’s all right. It’s another thing if they leave, that’s not a good thing to do to satiate our summit ego,” Txikon explains.

Txikon already commented, in an interview in MARCA, days before arriving at Annapurna Base Camp that he was going without pressure and with the clear idea of “not risking even half of the summit.not to risk even half of what we did on Manaslu, that’s more than clear to me.“.

The loss of all the material at Camp 3, when the ice block on which it was located collapsed, forced the team to return to Base Camp when they were planning to attack the summit. Once there, they made the decision to abandon Annapurna in view of the difficult conditions they would encounter in the coming days.

Txikon set off on November 29 from Bilbao. He completed three weeks of acclimatization at not excessively high altitudes. He arrived at Annapurna Base Camp on December 21 with the onset of astronomical winter. He spent Christmas Eve at Camp 1. On December 26 he reached Camp 3 (6,400 meters). He then returned to Base Camp where he spent three days. On December 30 they undertook the second high altitude rotation of their winter expedition to Annapurna. That same night some slept at Camp 1 (5,150 m) and others at Base Camp to climb directly to Camp 2.

Txikon y la expedici贸n en el Annapurna.

Txikon and the expedition on Annapurna.

On December 31 Txikon, Pemba or Mig Temba climbed from C1 to C2, where they spent the night. On January 1 they deposited the rest of the necessary material at C3. Bad weather prevented them from continuing to Camp 4 or attempting the summit attack. They returned to Base Camp where they remained until Tuesday, January 9. On the third rotation at altitude they encountered an avalanche before reaching Camp 1. “Five more minutes and we would have been wiped off the face of the Earth. It was the strongest avalanche since we’ve been here.”. Then, when they reached Camp 3 they saw they had run out of material.

“We’ve taken too many risks already. It’s one thing to catch me, but not my teammates. We fought it out, we carried everything ourselves, we equipped everything ourselves. I made a mistake by myself and we all got up. I think it would be reckless to stay , given the exceptionally good conditions, but at the same time so compromised and risky in which Annapurna is, in constant transformation,” confesses Txikon.