Shishapangma 8013 m
Summited 27.09.2000 by the classical route from the North face, skied down from 7400m, Ukrainian National Expedition
Of all the expeditions attempting the mountain, we arrived last at Base Camp and we were the first in the season to summit the eight-thousander

The team members:
1. Vadim Leontiev, the head of the expedition
2. Michael Evchev
3. Vladimir Mogyla
4. Vadim Pihotskiy
5. Sergey Pugachov
6. Vladislav Terzyul

Sergey Pugachov, Master of Sport, city of Donetsk :

"It was a speedy and financially lightweight expedition pretty short, with fast acclimatization and only two ascents on the route. From the very beginning we started at a good pace because Vladislav wanted to climb one more mountain, Cho-Oyu, which he then did excellently. From the frontier to BC we drove, we were in hurry and skipped some necessary stages of acclimatization. The Bridge of Friendship, the border between Nepal and Tibet, is at the height of 1500m. The next night we spent at 3500m already at Nyalam village. From there we tried to make a training ascent for acclimatization in nasty sleety weather that resulted in sickness for two participants: Evchev and Mogyla. On the next day we reached BC. The particular feature of Shishapangma is that Base Camp, at 5000m, is highest among the other eight thousand meter peaks and it could be reached by jeep.Thus the transition into high altitude occurred too fast. BC is located on the high Tibetan plateau without any greenery. Next to it is a huge glacier with towering icy dragon teeth. To get to the beginning of the route one has to pass 10 km of trail ascending 600m.
We spent a couple of days in BC for acclimatization and getting the caravan ready. Then with yaks we came to the advanced BC. On our arrival we found that many expeditions had been working on the mountain. As usual Vladislav met a lot of friends there. Later in this season while climbing Cho-Oyu he met his friend Richard Pavlovsky and stayed at the Polish camp. I become acquainted more closely with Richard later in 2003 during a Hidden Peak expedition. He impressed me very much: his is a pretty strong personality concentrated on climbing. He was a partner of the famous Jerzy Kukuzka who climbed all the 14 worlds highest peaks next after Messner and exceeded him on the number of technical routes. Kukuzka passed away climbing the south face of Lhotse and his partner Pavlovsky had to descend solo from the wall


The team in BC: V. Mogyla, V.Pihotskiy, V.Leontiev, V.Terzyul, M.Evchev, S.Pugachev.

After five days Vladimir Mogyla refused to take part in the expedition on account of poor health. It was necessary to get him down and for that we needed to hire a personal jeep. In a totalitarian country everything is controlled, an officer provides an expedition with everything: gives the cars, arranges a caravan, proposes the hotel and so on. But one is not free and can do nothing without his approval. It is possible to refuse to climb at all but it is prohibited to go far from BC. And our officer proved to be not an ordinary man; he had climbed 7 peaks over eight thousand meters. He was a fat pompous Chinese and didnt understand the language of ultimatum. But Vladislav succeeded in finding ways for cooperation and demonstrated his diplomacy by drinking a lot of vodka with the Chinese. He arranged the matter of Vladimirs dispatch and then he was given a personal jeep to get to Cho-Oyu with an allowance charter everything permitted.

We had not climbed the main summit because we didnt even know about its existence. All the expeditions climb the central summit and the Chinese account it (consider it to be right) and give certificates for it. If we knew that it was necessary to pass the ridge we would do that, leave earlier from the summit camp. And we had done what we planned initially, quickly and correctly. From C3 we three together
Terzyul, Pihotskiy and Pugachev left not early, around 7 am. The main difficulty was the swampy snow: the mountain is entirely snowy. There is a technical place, a rocky cliff, equipped with ropes. We stepped on the summit towards evening around 6 pm. We understood that we would run down to C3 quickly in two hours and we did. On our way down we were covered by a blizzard and when we got to the tent there were Leontiev and Evchev. We had no time to descend to a lower camp so we spent a terrible night, five together in a three-person tent.
Next day we waited till our guys came from the summit and this evening jumped down to C2 (7100m), in order to release for them the upper camp for good rest and evacuation. Further we three went to remove our intermediate camps. From C3 Terzyul skied down, turning to the right around the rock cliffs. He passed the plateau walking due to deep snow and poor sliding. Our route is good as observed from beneath and we had been seen in telescopes by the members of the other expeditions. Later they came, greeted us and expressed fraternal feelings."

Scheduling of the climb (by V.Leontiev, Master of Sport, city of Odessa):
"09.0911.09 Arrived at BC, acclimatization ascent, got ready for trek to ABC.
12.09 all the team went to ABC (5600m) along an even trail following the river bed. In 5-6 hours we have reached it and set up the camp. Everyone was suffering from headache.
13.09 We proceeded to develop our camp, build sauna, sort out foodstuffs. Vladimir felt bad, we sought for a doctor in other expeditions but in vain. Terzyul repaired a heater for the sauna, he wanted that sauna very much.
14.09 The group of Terzyul, Pugachev, Pihotskiy, and Evchev went in the direction of C1 (6300m), taking gear and food. Myself along with Vladimir went downward and made an agreement with the Chinese about a car. Vladimir left the expedition due to illness.
15.09 After Vladimirs dispatch I came back to ABC. The guys didnt reach C1, they left some stuff stored before it. It appeared we would need one more intermediate camp.
16.09 It snowed during the night; we discussed our tactics. After that Terzyul and Pihotskiy set off from the tent and went toward the glaciers tongue. The rest set out in two hours with heavy backpacks.
17.09 Set up C1 (6300m) and overnighted there.
18.09 It snowed in the night and our traces had been wiped out. Terzyul led on skis, the rest were walking with difficulty despite the tracks he made. In two hours we got out onto the plateau. We left our stuff before C2 (7100m). Terzyul looked unusually tired, he caught a cold (sneezing).
19.09 We came back to ABC to relax a little, took a steam bath and Terzyul recovered.
20.09 21.09 Days for break and relaxation. Shishapangma was covered with clouds and it was getting colder.
22.09 Ascended to C1 (6300m). A snowy wind quickly wiped out our traces.
23.09 Set out one tent, traveled to C2 (7100m) and developed it. We started late so broke the tent in twilight with a very strong wind.
24.09 Strong wind. Terzyul went to bring some stuff stored lower at C2. We delivered expedition stuff to C3 (7400m) and came back to C2 for overnight. Terzyul wanted to go upward but the guys were not ready yet; they needed some more acclimatisation. We were alone on the plateau, all the other expeditions had gone down.
25.09 Day off in C2 (7100m). We were alone on the route the weather frightened away the others. Yesterday we climbed the ridge but didnt find a quiet place for a tent.
26.09 I found that we had only two balloons of fuel, so I needed to go to C1 to get fuel. Terzyul, Pugachev, Pihotskiy went towards the summit, Evchev accompanied them till C3. The group set up C3 (7400m).


View from C2 to the ridge, where the summit camp was located.

27.09 at 10:00 contacted Terzyul by radio. It was windy, a snowy ground wind. They went in crampons over the ridge. At 12:00 am they were 200m before the ring on the ridge, the snow had different density, the wind calmed down. At 15:00 they were in the middle of the deep snow triangle, everything was OK. At 18:00 they began descending from the top in strong wind. By 20:00 everyone had come to the tent in C3. They drank tea and tried somehow to relax with five together in the three-person tent.
29.09 Leontiev and Evchev summited and came back into C3 while the
rest of the group went down to C2."