Banking & Management
Adventure & Outdoors
the-south-asian.com November 2000
Page 1 of 2
Karakoram Air Safari – to 'the throne room of the Gods'
By Bilal Khan
Pakistan International’s ‘Air-Safari’ takes one over the highest and most spectacular mountain ranges of the world – the Himalayas, the Karakorams and the Hindukush. The flight takes one over nature’s grandest sculpted work of art – a journey of 1 hour and 50 minutes into another era, another realm – the closest most of us can get to names such as Nanga Parbat, K2, Broad Peak, Rakaposhi, Concordia, Trango Towers and more. The entire journey is nothing less than a spiritual experience. Galen Rowell has very aptly termed Concordia 'the throne room of the Gods'.
I boarded PIA’s Boeing 737 at Islamabad airport on its ‘Air-Safari’ over the highest and most spectacular mountain ranges of the world – the Himalayas, the Karakorams and the Hindukush. The flight took us over 1000 kms of nature’s grandest sculpted work of art – a journey of 1 hour and 50 minutes into another era, another realm.
Soon after take-off from Islamabad at nine in the morning on a clear October day, we headed in northerly direction and very soon climbed towards Nanga Parbat – the 9th highest peak in the world and the second highest in Pakistan. This 26,660 feet high giant in the Himalayan range stands alone against the backdrop of the Karakorams.
known as ‘the killer mountain’, Nanga Parbat is the most difficult and
dangerous peak of the Himalayas – more climbers have lost their lives here
than elsewhere in the world. We approached the mountain from its
It was rather amusing to sit in a plane that was being piloted around deftly as if it were a small car. The pilot came on the PA system and said "OK, now as we leave Nanga Parbat, we are going to accelerate our speed so that we can take you to the vicinity of K2 without wasting time."
Photo of Nanga Parbat - Rupal face - courtesy PIA
|Copyright © 2000 [the-south-asian.com]. Intellectual Property. All rights reserved.|