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PKU mountaineering team reaches the peak of Mount Qomolangma

MAY . 16 2018
Peking University, May 15, 2018:

To the Top of the World

At 10:23, May 15th, 2018, Beijing Time, the PKU mountaineering team reached the peak of Mount Qomolangma. The team members, flaunting out the Chinese national flag, the Peking University school flag and finally the flag of the Mountaineering Association (also known as Shanyin Hiking Club), proudly proclaimed their ideal of “Peaking of the PKU Ethos” and wished their alma mater a very happy birthday.

This team mainly consists of the Mountaineering Association members, along with staff and alumni of Peking University, among whom the youngest is only 21 years of age, and the eldest 55. The team is led by Mr. Huang Nubo, a PKU alumnus from class of 1980, Department of Chinese Language and Literature. It was an arduous journey and a most delectable success.

Mount Qomolangma is the primary peak of the Hymalayas, and the highest summit of the world (8844.43 metres of altitude). There are two recognized routes to the culmination; the one more often adopted starts from Nepal and ascends via the South Col, and another starts in northern Tibet and trudges through the North Col. The PKU team opted for the latter.

On March 31st, the team assembled at the south gate of Peking University and embarked on this valiant expedition. The conquest of a great mount is no easy task and requires studious training and tenacious efforts. On arriving at Shigatse on April 7th, the team was given to incessant shambling in the following month; every night the team would send a message to the campus reporting its safety, and as the messages amounted, the team pressed forward.

On April 7th, the mountaineering team arrived at Shigatse.

On April 8th, the team left Shigatse, via Lhazê County, arrived at Tingri County, camping at Babai Village at an altitude of 4,300 meters.

On April 9th, the team arrived at Everest Base Camp, at an altitude of 5,200 meters.

On April 12th, the team rose to altitude 5,600 meters for adaptation, arrived at altitude 5553 meters. The distance of hiking was 15.2 kilometers.

On April 14th, the team progressed 10 kilometers, arriving at Everest Intermediate Camp with an altitude of 5,800 meters.

On April 22nd, the team came to Base Camp with an altitude of 5,200 m to get a rest.

On April 24th, the team arrived at Everest Advanced Base Camp at an altitude of 6,500 meters and rested for one day.

On April 27th, the whole team started from Advanced Base Camp and arrived at North Col Camp with an altitude of 7,028 meters.

On April 28th, the team arrived at altitude 7,400 meters for adaptation and then back to North Col Camp to get a rest.

On April 30th, before the PKUers went in for the final ascent, there was a warm-hearted congregation at the camp. Many alumni and fellow mountaineers came to offer their good wishes and encouragement, and Mr. Cao Jun even dedicated two poems to his brave comrades. In the first ten days of this glorious May the team patiently waited at the camp for their opportunity and finally set out on May 11th. On the 12th, they reached the first stop as planned, while the Tashilhunpo monks began their benedictory chanting for the adventurers down at Shigatse.

Apart from the protracted and moiling ascent itself, the mountaineers were faced with severe living conditions and fatal dangers of the harsh environment. At 7028m, they had to climb multiple 400-meter glacier cliffs; at 7790m, they were challenged by swirling gales at a wind gap; at 8300m, it was impossible to pitch tents and they could only rest sitting up……the team, however, never thought of quitting. On the 15th, the team peaked at 8844.43m.

The Eagle of Peking University

When George Mallory, the first mountaineer who attempted to peak on Mount Qomolangma, was asked why he would make such a dangerous endeavour, he simply replied: “It’s there.” The spirit embodied in this answer lies in the heart of every mountaineer, as well as in the ceaseless striving of the Mountaineering Association.

In August, 1990, the Peking University Mountaineering Team climbed the Jade Mount Everest in East Kunlun
in Qinghai Province (6178 m), which was the first time that the Peking University Mountaineering Team climbed the snow mountain.

In August, 1992, the Mountaineering Association of Peking University (MAPKU) climbed the central peak of Nyenchen Tanglha Mountains in Tibet (7,117 m). At that time, no Chinese had yet reached the summit. The three team members managed to reach the summit.

In August, 1994, the Peking University Mountaineering Team climbed the source of the Yangtze River to Geladaindong Peak (6,621 m). Eleven members reached the summit, which was the first time that Chinese summited snow-capped peak at the source of the Yangtze River.

In August, 1995, the team from MAPKU and Fukuoka University in Japan jointly climbed Tibet’s Noijin Kangsang Peak (7,209 m). On August 17th, four members from each country summitted the peak.

In August, 1996, the team from MAPKU climbed Ma Qing Kang Ri Peak in the Guoluo Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province. Five team members summited the peak on August 1st.

In 1998, as one of the celebration activities for the 100th anniversary of the establishment of PKU, the Peking University Mountaineering Team climbed the sixth highest peak of the world, Cho Oyu (8201 m). On April 1st, three team members summitted the peak and filled the blank of records reaching peaks of 8000 meters by domestic amateur mountaineering organizations.

In summer 2002, the team climbed the west peak of Shisha Pangma (7292 m) in Tibet. The five members suffered an avalanche. When six members of the rescue team arrived at the scene, only found all five members had died.

In summer 2003, the team from MAPKU reached the summit of Yuzhu Peak again in Kunlun, Qinghai. This time twelve members summitted the peak.

In summer 2004, the Peking University Mountaineering Team, 16 members, summitted the top of Qizi Peak in Tibet.

In 2007, the Peking University Mountaineering Team, 13 members, ascended to Jiagang Peak in Tibet, which is 6444 meters above sea level. It realized the human’s first ascension to the summit.

In 2008, the team from MAPKU once again challenged a peak of 7000 m. The goal was the Koskulak Peak in Xinjiang, with an altitude of 7028 m.

In August, 2015, the Camel Mountaineering Team from MAPKU successfully climbed the top of Animaqing peak Maqinggangri, which is 6282 meters above sea level. It ended the record of no peaking in this mountain peak for nearly 20 years.

In July, 2016, the team from MAPKU climbed the Jomtula Nikko Peak at 7,034 meters above sea level. Due to the poor weather, they finally gave up the summit, but the team established a snow mountain training program during the process and deepened their understanding of the Himalayan glaciers.

At 8:48, October 1st, 2017, the team from MAPKU climbed to the top of the world's sixth highest peak, Cho Oyu, in the Himalayas, 8201 meters above sea level. They sent the “highest” birthday wishes for the 68th anniversary of China.

On March 31st, 2018, the Everest Mountaineering Team of PKU set off from the south gate of Peking University to embark on the trip to the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest, which is 8844.43 meters above sea level.

The incumbent board of the club is headed by Mr. Qian Junwei, the director, and Mr. Zhao Wanrong, the team leader. Trust and solidarity are the core principles of this team. Zhao once gave his dog point on a cliff to another fellow without demur, and it is exactly this collective devotion that made the club such an inspiring legend.

Ever since the project was approved in 2016, the team has been preparing with great intensity and rigor. Physical fitness training took place thrice a week, and discussions of the minutest details were given utmost importance. The successful conquest of Cho Oyu was a little “warmup” for the team, after which 200 more days of yet harder drill ensued.

The “eagle” of Peking University never faltered at any hardship. They were snow-blind, numb from cold, suffering from diarrhea and all sorts of physical ailments, and yet they overcame all these difficulties one by one. At the May 4th anniversary pageant, Lin Jianhua, president of Peking University, dialled a conference call to the team and sent them regards from President Xi Jinping. The audience was roused to excitement and pride when they beheld their fellow men’s great courage.

Team member list:


Zhao Wanrong, Guo Jiaming, Wei Wei, Li Jinxue, Xia Fan, Tao Bingxue, Zhuang Fangdong

Faculty members:

Qian Junwei, Zhao Dongyan


Li Wei, Qiu Xiaobin, Li Wei, Yang Dongjie, Fang Xiang

Written by: Ma Xiao
Edited by: Zhang Jiang

Source: PKU Official Wechat (Chinese)