Geography of Thalay Sagar Peak
Globally, Thalay Sagar can be pinpointed at coordinates 30 degrees 51 minutes 29 seconds north and 78 degrees 59 minutes 50 seconds east. It has an elevation of about 22,651 ft (6,904 m). Characteristically, Thalay Sagar is a dramatic rock peak, which is steep on all sides. It is valued by mountaineers as it provides scope for mountaineering. Its base is adorned with a lake called Kedartal. Other peaks close to Thalay Sagar Peak are Meru Peak, Shivling, Kedarnath, Mount Satopanth, Badrinath, and Chaukhamba I.
Routes on Thalay Sagar Peak
There are three routes discovered and available to the mountaineers on Thalay Sagar. They are the northeast ridge, the southeast ridge and the north face of Thalay Sagar.
Climbing History of Thalay Sagar Peak
Due to Thalay Sagar's consistently steep profile, no attempt was made to climb the peak until the late 1970s. It was the time when hard technical rock climbing has started being executed at high altitudes. Astonishingly, the first attempt to climb such a hard peak like Thalay Sagar proved to be successful. An Anglo-American team was the first to climb the Thalay Sagar on 24th of June, 1979 via the northwest couloir (which means a steep, narrow gully on a mountainside) and ridge. The members of this team were Roy Kligfield, John Thackray and Pete Thexton.
After the first ascent, many other routes were experimented with and discovered on the Thalay Sagar Mountain by mountaineers. As per estimations, 9 different routes were discovered via which at least 15 ascents were made. Using 5 different routes, some more direct than others, mountaineers had climbed the north face of the peak, in particular. A notorious band of shale near the summit comprising of rotten and dangerous rocks acted as a major difficulty for mountaineers in the direct routes on Thalay Sagar. Astonishingly, mountaineers were able to climb directly through the shale band, instead of finishing on one of the ridges. The first route was the Australian Route, which was traversed by Andrew Lindblade and Athol Whimp. It involved 1,400 m (4,600 ft) of climbing and is graded ‘VII 5.9 WI5’. The climb via this route was awarded the ‘Piolet d'Or’ in the year 1999. Piolet d'Or stands for the ‘Golden Ice Axe’ in French language. It is an annual mountaineering award given by the French magazine ‘Montagnes’ and ‘The Groupe de Haute Montagne’ since 1991. Groupe de Haute Montagne and Montagnes frame the list of nominees, whereas the award is chosen by a jury.
A Dutch team comprising of people named Melvin Redeker, Mike Van Berkel and Cas Van de Gevel are known to first ascent the Thalay Sagar NE(north east) face to the SE (south east) ridge. From the base camp to the summit their journey took 11- days. This time period was inclusive of the time spent in waiting during bad weather conditions. The Dutch climbers have received the distinction of being the eighth team that reached the summit of Thalay Sagar.
A person named Basanta Singha Roy became the first Indian to successfully ascent Thalay Sagar in the year 2008. He is a famous climber from a mountaineering club called Mountaineers Association of Krishnanagar (MAK). This club is located in the state of West Bengal. It was established in the year 1986 and is involved in conducting mountaineering expeditions, high altitude trekking in the Himalayas, rock climbing courses, etc. Basanta Singha Roy had three Sherpa companions on his journey namely, Pemba Sherpa, Pasangh Sherpa and Phurba Sherpa.
Even a woman from Kolkata (the capital city of West Bengal) climbed Thalay Sagar on 22nd of July, 2012. Her name is Tusi Das. She was a part of a five-member women’s team from the Alipore-based Kolkata Albatross Adventure Society. It is important to note that Tusi Das was the only member of this team to reach the summit of Thalay Sagar. Tusi Das’s ascent has received the distinction of being the first woman ascent on Mt Thalay Sagar.
One can commence on a journey to Uttarkashi from Dehradun, the capital city of the state of Uttarakhand. The Jolly Grant Airport, also known as Dehradun Airport is a domestic airport located about 22 kilometers southeast of Dehradun. This airport connects Dehradun to other major cities of India. Dehradun Railway Station is located at a distance of about 2 kilometers from the city centre. Regular and frequent buses connect Dehradun to major cities of India. For example, Dehradun is well connected to Delhi by buses. Roads leading to Uttarkashi from Dehradun are motorable by buses and taxis. From Uttarkashi, one would have to avail a bus to reach Gangotri. From Gangotri, one would have to trek to a place called Tapovan. This is the place where the base camp to commence on a journey to the summit of Thalay Sagar is set.
Gangotri group of mountains, Uttarakhand
Mountain Peaks of India
Himalayan Mountain Range, Indian Mountains
(Last Updated on : 15-09-2016)
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