Polish mountaineer Andrzej Bargiel is the first to ski from summit of K2

Polish mountaineer Andrzej Bargiel is the first to ski from summit of K2

Featured Image: Courtesy of Adrzej Bargiel

Polish man Andrzej Bargiel, 30, made history yesterday becoming the first person to successfully ski from the summit of K2, the world’s second highest mountain. The three-day summit push culminated in Bargiel and his brother, Bartłomiej, reaching the top of the 28,251-foot mountain on Sunday morning Polish time.

“K2 summit conquered! Time for the ride down,” Bargiel wrote on Twitter.

Bargiel first attempted to climb and ski from K2’s summit last year, but had to back away from the effort because of inclement weather.

Unsurprisingly, the news has made its way into international headlines as well as across the skiing community. Ski mountaineer Chris Davenport, who has skied the Lhotse Face of Everest, took to Facebook yesterday to express his excitement and congratulations of the event, noting that “this is one of the most impressive first descents since Andreas Fransson skied Denali’s south face.”

Bargiel completing his ski descent of K2 on July 22, 2018. PHOTO: Marek Ogień / Red Bull Content Pool

Speaking just after completing the ski descent, Bargiel told Red Bull: “I’m very happy that I’ve managed to ski down the summit of K2 and get back to the base safely! I started to climb K2 at 4 in the morning on Sunday. The weather was good. Some problems appeared when I reached the peak and started to ski down. It was very cloudy and I had to wait for it to clear up at Base IV because the next phase of my downhill was going to be very difficult and technical on an extremely steep wall. I feel huge happiness and, to be honest, it was my second attempt, so I’m glad that I won’t be coming here again.”

Bargiel also holds claim to being the first person to ski down Broad Peak (26,401 feet), another Himalayan giant in the Karakoram Range.

Bargiel on his way down. PHOTO: Marek Ogień / Red Bull Content Pool

Bargiel smiles easy after his K2 ski descent. PHOTO: Marek Ogién / Red Bull Content Pool

The month-long expedition on the border of China and Pakistan couldn’t have ended any better for the Pole and his team. Linking snowy sections the entire way down K2, Bargiel successfully navigated enormous crevasses, seracs and avalanche paths to reach base camp without having to remove his skis. This first ski descent of K2 is truly a historic and monumental human achievement.

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