Posted on: October 16, 2006

Reported in the NewsWire of October 12 was the new route soloed by Pavle Kozjek on the southwest face of Cho Oyu (8201m). What was not reported was that Kozjek was part of a larger Slovenian expedition that included Uros Samec, Aljaz Tratnik, Marjan Kovac and Emil Tratnik. On October 2, the day Kozjek began up the route, Kovac and Emil Tratnik (Aljaz Tratnik's father, and a member of the famous 1981 Yugoslavian expedition that made, with Stane Belak and Cene Bercic, the first ascent of the South Face of Dhaulagiri) began the route as well. Uros Samec and Aljaz Tratnik started up the Kurtyka-Loretan-Troillet route the same day, but because of bad conditions traversed to the left to join the new line. While Kozjek continued to the top the same day, completing his ascent in fourteen and a half hours (he reached base camp thirty hours after departing), the other four slept above the junction with the Normal Route and reached the summit the next day. Samec and Aljaz Tratnik climbed in alpine style, spending the night in their own tent at CIII on the Normal Route. Kovac and Tratnik used the team's acclimatization tent at Camp II. All four pitched out the crux of the new line, a photo of which may be seen here.

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