Heading off to K2
15th June 2009
The ski mountaineer, Fredrik Ericsson, sets off to ski down the mountain and has been telling PlanetSKI about the trip so far. He has though had a big setback.
Fredrik is planning to climb up and then ski down the 3 highest mountains in the world and he is sending us a regular blog. See his first one for full details of the expedition and a video interview we did wth him last winter in Chamonix.
“A lot has happened the last few days. Some good and some bad.
I arrived in Islamabad last Sunday without any problems. I didn’t miss any flights, all my bags arrived, even the gear that I sent by cargo a couple of weeks ago was in Islamabad waiting for me. Chocking!
But as always on my trips, some things doesn’t go as planned. This time it wasn’t me but my climbing partner Michele who got into trouble. When I was about to board the plane in Frankfurt I got an sms from Michele saying: “Do you have Pakistan Visa? I stop in airport because I don’t have Visa“. Apparently Michele had forgot to get the Visa that one needs to enter Pakistan. That turned out to be a small problem. Michele went to the Embassy of Pakistan in Milano last Monday and got the Visa in one day and could get on a plane for Pakistan two days later.So today, when he joined me here in Skardu, we could just laugh about that incident.
A much less entertaining thing was the news we got from the Ministry of Tourism. The other day I went there on what I thought was the regular “sign some papers and smile” exercise and I would walk away with the climbing permit for K2 and trekking permit for Laila Peak. But that was not the case. We got the climbing permit for K2 alright but they didn’t give us the trekking permit to go to Laila Peak. I tried to ask them why and the funny thing was that they didn’t have an answer. They just said NO. We put in a second application for the trekking permit but it didn’t help. The answer was the same. I’m very disappointed that we can’t go to Laila Peak since that, along with K2, was the big goal of this trip. It’s hard to see anything positive in that now but I guess in a few days I might find something.
Other than that I have started to feel some movements in my stomach and lost my appetite. I must have caught some sort of bug that is not uncommon when you travel to Pakistan. So far it’s not so bad and I’ve started to eat antibiotics. Hopefully it will be all gone in a few days.
The good things then.. Well, we are on the way towards K2. It has been my dream for many years now and finally it is happening. So things could be worse.
Tomorrow we will drive up to Askole and from there we will start the six days long trek towards K2 base camp. More news when we arrive in base camp around June 11.”
For more info about Fredrik, check out his website: www.fredrikericsson.com
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