ISLAMABAD, Aug 22 (APP):A British Backpacker Society team has successfully completed a two-week expedition to Concordia and K-2, fuelling hopes that Pakistan’s adventure travel pedigree will once again be recognised in the society’s influential end-of-year international adventure travel rankings.
Samuel Joynson, the president of the British Backpacker Society told APP that he set off from Skardu in early August along with Johannes Polkonen, another member of the society and supporting team from Skardu-based company “Vertical Explorers”.
The president said the team trekked for over 200 kilometres at an average altitude of 4000 metres to the base of the world’s second highest mountain, K-2. Their route included walking the length of the Baltoro Glacier, one of the world’s largest non-polar glaciers, and featured temperatures as low as -15’C, he added.
Speaking about his journey, Samuel Joynson said, “For generations, adventurers from around the world have told stories of the natural majesty of the deepest Karakoram and I have long dreamed of seeing this land of superlatives myself. In my experience, no other trek on earth offers visitors such scenic splendour and standing at Concordia, beneath K2 and the otherworldly Gasherbraum mountains – is an experience that no visitor will ever forget.
Samuel added that alongside showcasing some of the world’s finest alpine scenery, the trek also offers visitors a rare and undervalued experience in the modern world – a complete “digital detox.”
In an era of relentless email, social media, and phone calls, he said a trek to K2 was unique in as much as the lack of any phone signal on the route which allowed visitors to escape the pressures of the modern world for two weeks, besides enabling travellers to focus exclusively on the experience that they were lucky enough to be undertaking.
“Paradoxically, whilst this trek is very physically demanding, this lack of connectivity also ensures that the trek is remarkably mentally relaxing, with a trekker’s only daily concerns being how to cross the next mountain pass and how long until the next daal!”
For Johannes, the highlight of the experience was being “totally surrounded by snow capped mountains topping 6000, 7000 or even 8000 metres.
“In Europe (or indeed in almost any other region on earth), trekking amongst such huge mountains is unimaginable, and, for me, the scale of the Karakoram range is what makes trekking in this region of Pakistan so special. If you love mountains, hiking and the great-outdoors, I really can’t recommend this trek enough,” Johannes remarked while sharing his experience during the trip.
The British Backpacker Society aims to promote and enable travel in emerging tourism destinations, and its membership is constituted of some of the world’s most experienced adventure travellers.