K2 (Qogir or Godwin Austen) is the second-highest mountain on Earth after Mount Everest. A peak elevation is 8,611 metres (28,251 ft), K2 is part of the Karakoram Range, and is located on the border between the Taxkorgan Tajik Autonomous County of Xinjiang, China, and Gilgit, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan.
K2 is known as the Savage Mountain due to the difficulty of ascent and the 2nd highest fatality rate among the “eight thousanders” for those who climb it. For every four people who have reached the summit, one has died trying. Unlike Annapurna, the mountain with the highest fatality rate, K2 has never been climbed in winter.
K2 is a much more difficult and dangerous climb like Everest, due in part to its more inclement weather and comparatively greater height from base to peak. The mountain is believed by manyto be the world’s most difficult and dangerous climb, hence its nickname “the Savage Mountain.” It, and the surrounding peaks, have claimed more lives than any others. As of July 2010, only 302 people have completed the ascent,compared with over 2,700 individuals who have ascended the more popular target of Everest. At least 77 people have died attempting the climb. Notably, 13 climbers from several expeditions died in 1986 in the 1986 K2 Disaster, five of these in a severe storm. More recently, on August 1, 2008, a group of climbers went missing after a large piece of ice fell during an avalanche taking out the fixed ropes on part of the route. Four climbers were rescued, but 11 were confirmed dead.
K2 from the south, showing the main routes to have been climbed on this side of the mountain.
- A: West Ridge/Face (Japanese, 1981)
- B: West Face direct (Russian, 2007) [mistake because real west wall more left – you can’t see it from this photo, also south-west is just south ridge]
- C: South-West pillar/”Magic line” (Polish/Slovak, 1986)
- D: South Face (Polish, 1986)
- E: South-South-East spur (Scott (1983) and Cesen (1986) to Shoulder, Basque (1995) to summit)
- F: South-East Ridge/Abruzzi Spur (Italian, 1954)
West face of K2: alpinist.com.