The expedition team consisted of David Lim, team leader and motivational coach who suffers from Guillain Barre Syndrome, which has left him partially disabled, Mohd Rozani, a high access ropes technician and Grant Rawlinson, Sales Manager at Kongsberg Maritime, Singapore. The aim of the expedition, which was the result of over 3 years meticulous planning, preparations and training, was to climb as many unclimbed mountains as possible.
The Climbing of Kongsberg Peak
The previously unnamed Kongsberg Peak was the first of three that the team successfully climbed and claimed names for. From the Karkara basecamp set at 2000m in the south eastern corner of Kazakstan, the team members were airlifted 90km into the mountains, courtesy of a Kyrgystan army MI-8 helicopter to 3950m elevation, high on the Mushkatova Glacier. Here they set up basecamp and spent 2.5 days acclimatising and performing reconnaissance before the first summit was chosen, an unnamed, unclimbed peak showing at 4550m on the only available large scale map of the area.
On the morning of Friday 7th August 2009, the team climbed for 7 hours up steep rock and scree slopes to a broad snowy ridge which led directly onto the summit of a beautiful mountain peak. Being the first known human beings to stand on the summit, the team decided to name the peak 'Kongsberg Peak' in honour of the premier expedition sponsor. Since then, the mountain peak's name has been registered with the Kazak and Kyrgystan mountaineering federation who have also confirmed that it was previously unclimbed. Handheld GPS readings taken on the summit show Kongsberg Peak's position as:
- N 42d18'47.2”
- E 79d57'45.0”
- Height =4551m
Onwards and Upwards
Over the next ten days, the team attempted three more previously unclimbed peaks and were successful in scaling two of them, which they named Resilience Peak (4447m) and Majulah Peak (5152m). The name Malujah Peak reflects the spirit of the expedition and indeed Kongsberg Maritime's sponsorship of it. 'Majulah' is a Malay word meaning 'onwards' or to 'forge ahead'. The National Anthem of Singapore is also aptly titled 'Majulah Sinagapura'.
All heights and positions mentioned above are taken from standalone handheld uncorrected GPS measurements and should not be considered as 'official'.