African Ascents has had a busy climbing season on the North Face to Batian this year. This is in combination with the Riva Film group and 2 Mt Kilimanjaro Trips.
Batian summit attempts were made 3 parties between July and October. Johan Bourgstam kicked off the season, followed by Jamie Christian and Ross Withey, with Tim Hobbs, Mike Thomas and Sirimon Thomas finishing it off. All 3 parties had an incredible experience of technical alpine climbing in Africa.
Unfortunately mountain weather got the better of the first 2 parties, but it managed to clear up for the 3rd. Hobbs, and family Thomas had an epic and loved every minute of it. The 3 guides, Matt Wood, Julian Wright and Tom Gregory did a gear stash half way up the route the day before the summit attempt, this proved vital, although they forgot Hobbs’ feather pillow. The following day the group went off in high spirits, the weather held out an they hit the summit of Batian (the highest peak on Mt Kenya) at around 5 pm. The descent was done in the dark back to the gear stash and they had a nights sleep half way down probably the best alpine route in Africa.
Congratulations to everyone involved, to Julian Wright for a fantastic season of guiding, Matt Wood for joining us from South Africa, and commiserations to those who didn’t achieve their goals. Johan, Ross and Jamie have now booked to climb Nelion and cross the Gates of Mist to Batian in January.