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PORTFOLIO
SEPTEMBER
21-06-1954
21 June,
during a raging snowstorm Mario Puchoz contracts pulmonary oedema and dies at one o'clock in the morning at camp II (5,600 m). His companions only manage to take his body down to the valley on the 26th, when the weather improves, and bury him in the place where the "Gilkey Memorial" stands to day.
15-07-2004
14 July 2004: after 50 years, Lino Lacedelli returns to K2
50 years on, Lino Lacedelli returns to the the foot of the mountain of his life; a meeting, by no means easy, which he intensely desired. Together with his Scoiattoli he saluted his friend and expedition companion Mario Puchoz, who died tragically during the successful K2 expedition in 1954. Lino Lacedelli is now on his way back home, after having left a profound mark, and unforgettable emotions, in all the Scoaittoli currently attempting to climb the Great mountain.

50 years on, Lino Lacedelli returns to the the foot of the mountain of his life; a meeting, by no means easy, which he intensely desired. Together with his Scoiattoli he saluted his friend and expedition companion Mario Puchoz, who died tragically during the successful K2 expedition in 1954. Lino Lacedelli is now on his way back home, after having left a profound mark, and unforgettable emotions, in all the Scoaittoli currently attempting to climb the Great mountain.

Monday 12 July. Finally the news we've all been waiting for: Paolo Tassi calls to say that Lino is at Camp Concordia, he'll stop there for a day to recover before the final, tiring stage that leads to K2 Base Camp. I seize the opportunity and prepare my camera equipment and, with the help of a porter, reach them. Shaking hands with Lino and meeting up with my friends from Cortina in a place such as this is truly an emotional experience.

Lino is è coccolato by all, and on great form. He's happy, excited: from Concordia he's finally caught a glimpse of "his" K2. I'm fortunate enough to spend three days together with him, to retrace physically and mentally what today is already a part of history. Slowly but surely Lino climbs across the small difficult and boring sections of morraine. Then, during the short tea stops, he recounts with extreme mental lucidity small anecdotes of his fantastic adventure 50 years ago.

There are two reasons which motivated the 79 year old to reach this point: to salute Mario Puchoz, his old friend who died here in 1954, and to meet up with the Scoiattoli who, following his original idea, are now climbing the Mountain of mountains. He achieved this great dream, and in thick snowfall and "guarded" by the red jumpered Scoiattoli he immediately went to the memorial where his companion lies, and placed a plaque with the inscription "50 years together." During the final 200m to BC he was accompanied by a crowd of mountaineers and Pakistani porters who welcomed him, singing, dancing and offering garlands of flowers. He reached the food tent, ate a wholesome meal accompanied by a glass of wine, and talked about K2 today and yesteryear, therby sealing his arrival and his latest undertaking.

Lino finished his meal with heartfelt wishes to the Scoiattoli, and the words his chose to encourage us were extremely moving... In the evening we celebrated by eating spaghetti, prepared by Lorenzo, and a cake prepared by the Pakistani cooks, personalised with the writing "Welcome Lino". This is how our intense day finished, adding profound value to our 50th anniversary expedition. We believe that this 14th of July 2004 will remain etched in history, a tangible sign of the great emotions which, even today and 50 years on, were evoked on 31 July 1954, when Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni set foot on the virgin K2 summit.

Today, Wednesday 15 July, at 5.00 am Lino, his daughter Alberta, his son-in law Massimo, the mountain guide Paolo Tassi and Doctor Karin Chersi left BC for Broad Peak Base Camp where, conditions permitting, a helicopter should reach them and transport them back to Skardu. To tell you the truth, we think that Lino would have stayed here with us to the end of the expedition: it was incredible seeing him so at ease, almost 80 years old, despite the altitude.

All we can do now is wait for the decisive days so as to exchange this splendid demonstration of love towards K2... Thanks Lino!!!

Giuseppe Ghedina


The latest news from the mountain
While Renzo Benedetti, Marco Anghileri and Marco Da Pozzo cliimbed past C3 towards the shoulder on 13 July, Mario Lacedelli and Renato Sottsass left BC for C2 for another day of acclimatisation. Given the weather conditions though the two returned to BC the same day.

For the time being these are our impressions about the mountain and the route: as all know, the route is extremely long, with considerable height difference. As all mountaineers who have reached C3 have confirmed, there is a lot of fresh snow on the mountain, and this makes establishing C4 and proceeding on to the summit arduous Latest news from "Radio Baltoro": G2's famous crest, affectionately known as Banana Ridge, has collapsed, blocking the access to the normal route up this splendid mountain. (Mario Lacedelli)


Photos: Lino and the crowd, clsoe to K2 BC.
Photo 2: (click photo): the welcome banner which accompanied Lino throughout his trek.
Photo 3: Lorenzo Lorenzi serving a plate of spaghetti to Lino in thenfood tent in BC.
Photo 4: a section of glacial morraine between K2 BC and Broad Peak BC (from right to left:Paolo Tassi, Lino Lacedelli, Massimo Casagrande, Karin Cheris and Alberta Lacedelli).
Photo 5: Stefano Dibona, President of the Gruppo Scoiattoli, gives Lino Lacedelli an emotional handshake.
Photo 6: Massimo Casagrande, Lino Lacedelli and his daughter figlia Alberta, in the background K2.
ph Giuseppe Ghedina

Portfolio "Trekking"
Portfolio "Ascent"



NEWS
03-08-2004
The Scoiattoli return home
31-07-2004
Preparations are underway to leave K2 BC
30-07-2004
Brief comments, times and photos about the 6 Scoiattoli who reached he summit of K2
30-07-2004
Mario Lacedelli and Luciano Zardini at Base Camp!
29-07-2004
Mario Lacedelli and Luciano Zardini at Camp 2
WEATHER
27-07-2004
A weak ridge is situated over Afghanistan. It may at times affect the K2-area during the first days giving only risk of occasional showers. Then it seems to become more unsettled with frequent showers due to lows over Kashmir and Tibet.

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