Summited 17.10.2002 via the classical route on North-East ridge,
with V. Pestrikov, on the permit of a French expedition.
mountain actually justified its name - White Goddess. I had never
ploughed through so much snow. Constantly our steps set off avalanches
as we struggled to find a passable way … ”
1. Vladislav Terzyul, the leader
2. Vladimir Pestrikov
The 2002 expedition was the second attempt by V. Terzyul to summit
the Himalayan giant Dhaulagiri. His first attempt was made in autumn
of 1997 with a team of 3 other Ukrainians - Sergey Bershov, Igor
Svergun, and Viktor Bokov. Due to bad weather, accumulation of snow
and avalanche danger they reached 7100 meters and turned back. Despite
those conditions, on his second attempt Terzyul was familiar with
the route and remembered every cliff and snow mound. Even so the
climbing proved hard. From the very beginning they faced difficulties.
The trek to BC took them 10 days instead of 7 as planned because
of financial problems with porters and with sickness. But after
reaching BC, they managed to set up intermediate camps in about
two weeks, climbed to 6800m, made an acclimatization ascent to 7500m
and returned to BC. As during his previous attempt, there was a
lot of snow and the mountain’s condition did not make one optimistic
about success. The weather was bad. Continuous snowfall filled the
tracks on the trail, buried the fixed ropes and the tents. Moreover,
the snow increased the danger for avalanche and caused additional
problems climbing. In that situation, Vladimir and Vladislav made
the best choices they could. At C1 and C2 they built snow caves
instead of using tents. The caves could not be destroyed under pressure,
and for moving in deep snow they used ‘big foots’ or snow shoes.
It’s worth mentioning that the team worked independently according
to their own plan without the support of Sherpas or members of other
expeditions. When they returned from the first ascent, they learned
that all the expeditions were leaving BC and as a result, they would
be alone in camp and on the route. The main reason for the others’
decision to leave was that a huge avalanche had covered part of
the route. Terzyul didn’t intend to surrender twice to Dhaulagiri
and decided on a way to avoid the overloaded snowy slope on the
traditional route by crossing onto the east ridge. Actually, the
second ascent was impressive. The mass of snow had increased considerably
and buried fixed ropes and traces. Therefore the team spent more
effort and time than they expected. Above C2 they picked up ropes
left by other expeditions for use later on the route. Moreover the
pass onto the east ridge after C3 was technically difficult - icy
slopes and couloirs. C3 was established at 7500m - it became the
intermediate and summit camp. In total the second ascent took them
7 days and the descent 3 days.
Schedule of Mt. Dhaulagiri climb (by V.Pestrikov):
"10.01.02 -The first part: passed from BC (4740m) to C1 (5900m),
snow cave construction, overnight;
10.02.02 - Development of C1.
10.03.02 - Ascent to C2 (6800m), snow cave construction and overnight.
10.04.02 - Ascent to C3 (7500m) for acclimatization, then return
to C2 for overnight
10.05.02 - Return to BC.That day all the expeditions based in BC
decided go down from BC and abandon the attempt to climb Mt. Dhaulagiri
for the reason of "avalanche danger and bad snow conditions
on the route” (actually they had different reasons).
10.07-08.02 - Very heavy snow fall for two days, at BC about 1m
of new snow. All other expeditions left BC.
10.09.02 - Team made the decision to continue climbing and start
the next day.
10.10.02 - From BC ? C1 took about 14 hours (instead of 5 hours
normally) in “big foots,” no tracks on the trail, no ropes.
10.11.02 - C1 - C2 took 10 hours in “big foots” (usually 3-4 hours),
no tracks, no ropes.
10.12.02 - C2 - C3 full day ascending from morning until deep darkness,
tents set up about 21.00. On the way we picked up ropes left by
other expeditions (about 300m) in order to use them for further
ascent. After C3 the route got steeper and a wind had blown off
10.13.02 - C3 (7500m) - climbed to the rock ridge to overlook the
route, then equipped it and reached 7600m.
10.14.02 - C3 worked on the route up to 7700 - 7800m.
10.15.02 - C3 ascent to 7900m.
10.16.02 - C3, hung the last ropes and looked for way to summit.
10.17.02 - Summit day, started from C3 at 5.00 a.m., reached summit
at 15.00, return to C3 at about 18.00. In the morning the weather
was clear but very windy and extremely cold; cloudiness was coming
toward the mountain from the south. Around 12.00-12.30 visibility
was getting worse; from 13.00 there was very bad visibility and
a stormy wind.
10.18.02 - C3 - C2 the descent took us almost a full day, very deep
snow, avalanche danger.
10.19.02 - C2 - C1, descent to 5700m and overnight in tent on the
10.20.02 - 5700 - BC, arrived in BC around 16.00."
Snowy slopes of Mt.Dhaulagiri
Practically all the way from the summit to BC they moved very cautiously,
tied with rope. No permanent safety rope had been fixed below due
to avalanches. On the slopes prone to avalanche, they broke off
the snow deliberately to cause small avalanches to slip down to
make a passable way. When they were in BC the team packed up all
the bivouac stuff, gear and clothes to be ready for evacuation.
While they were walking to meet the porters the stuff was stolen.
They arrived back in Kathmandu with only chocolate, but they had