K2 was climbed for the first time in 1954, by Italians Achille Compagnoni and Lino Lacedelli. Supplementary oxygen was used, but Compagnoni and Lacedelli claimed to have completed the final 200m to the summit without it, their supply having run out. It is now known that this claim was exaggerated, and was very likely entirely untrue.
K2 is the second highest mountain in the world and was the fourth mountain of over 8000m to be climbed.
K2 is the world’s second highest peak. Towering north from Concordia, the joining of five glaciers named in 1892 by Martin Conway after the place de la Concorde in Paris. Some of the world’s longest glaciers after polar region Abruzzi, Godwin Austin, Biarchidi, Vigine, West Gashbrum and Broad glaciers meet here at Concordia.
K2 was first climbed by Italians in 1954 and since then the process is carrying on by mountaineers till last year 2002. So far dozens of climbers had climbed this mountain and 27 died during different expeditions. Most caught in a storm above 8000 meters. The worst year was 1986, when five expeditions were on K2 in early August,
16 climbers reached the summit, but 13 died. The memorials of those climbers are at about 20 minutes north of K2 base camp, on the rock face above the junction of the Sovoia and Godwin Austin Glaciers. The first memorial was placed in 1953 of the famous American climber Art Gilkey. The process of success and defeat is still on.