Gilgit Baltistan

Mountaineer Nisar Hussain Sadpara : The Unsung Hero

Mountaineer Nisar Hussain Sadpara was a great climber from Skardu, Nisar ascended Gasherbrum II four times, Gasherbrum I three times, Broad Peak in 2000, K2 in 2004 and Nanga Parbat in 2008. He died during a Winter Attempt of Gasherbrum I in 2012.

He accomplished his first major climbing success in 1996, as part of an Army expedition, he climbed Sia Kangri (7,422 m), situated at the confluence of the Siachen and Baltoro glaciers. He gained strong technical skills in climbing through his enthusiasm and thus became a favorite for international expeditions.

Mountaineer Nisar Hussain accompanied a Korean Gasherbrum II (8,035) expedition in 1999. Nisar Hussain Sadpara, the very strong, adventurous and determined, showed his finest mountaineering abilities and climbed the mountain successfully. He joined another Korean expedition again in 2000 and reached the summit of Broad Peak.

In 2003, he climbed within a span of 24 days with the Korean expeditions, Gasherbrum II (8,035) and Gasherbrum I (8,068 m), joining the class of mountaineers who earned the honor of scaling more than one peak of 8,000 meters in a month.

He was chosen by the Alpine Club of Pakistan for the Joint China Pakistan expedition to K-2 due to his outstanding climbing skills on dangerous mountains.

He proudly displayed the National Flag at the top of K2, the second-highest mountain in the world, helping the Chinese mountaineers to reach the top of K2.

In 2007, he was again chosen for the Joint China Pakistan Gasherbrum I (8,068 m) expedition and again the expedition was successful with his helped and determination.

In 2008, with a German expedition team, he climbed the Nanga Parbat via Diamer faced and achieved the rare distinction of being the third Pakistani to climb all five Pakistani 8000 meters mountains.

In 2011, Nisar Hussain teamed up with Gerfried Goschl in his tripleheader attempt in summer 2011, i.e. Gasherbrum I (8,068 m) I, Gasherbrum II (8,035 m) and K-2 (8,611 m).

He reached the top of both Gasherbrum I and II alongside other foreign climbers. In addition to being the first Pakistani to climb Gasherbrum II four times and Gasherbrum I three times, Nisar Hussain has now earned another unique distinction.

Mountaineer Nisar Hussain Sadpara became the first Pakistani to make the first winter ascent of this difficult peak from the new route on the south side.

He was successful in crossing this new and most challenging route on the mountain under extremely low temperatures (in the range of minus -50 to -70) and strong winds alongside other members of the summit team (often blowing more than 50 km per hour).

Nisar Hussain was last seen just below the Gasherbrum I summit, along with Gerfried Goschl and Swiss climber Hehlen Cedric, on  9 March 2012 at 12 pm. Nisar Hussain disappeared with his teammates and was declared lost near the Summit after an aerial search carried out later on 15 March 2012.

Nisar was loved by all those with whom he had interacted, and the porters, for a young climber who, very literally, had mountaineering in his veins, it was a sad end.

Many distinguished mountaineers have been produced in Sadpara Village in Skardu, most notably Muhammad Ali Sadpar, Hassan Sadpara, the second Pakistani to scale Mount Everest.

Sadly, He could not pursue his education. His father had to leave work due to declining health and Nisar started working to relieve the financial strain of his family. He was fond of hearing stories from his father and other relatives of epic mountaineering feats as a child.

Nisar would often scale the peaks surrounding his village. He would soon leave them all behind when climbing to the top by challenging his fellow shepherds to climbing contests.

Ali Raza, who became Nisar’s best friend and mentor, recalls that tour operators declined to consider him because of his age when he recommended Nisar for the role of a high altitude porter.

Finally, he got the opportunity to become part of the expedition team at Ali’s insistence. In 1996, he went on his first climbing mission for the Pakistan Army to the Sia Kangri mountain in the Karakoram range.

He managed to scale the top, which was at a height of 7,422m above sea level, despite being just sixteen years old. Nisar received many awards from then on and gained the distinction of being Pakistan’s youngest mountaineer and the second youngest globally.

National hero, Mountaineer Hasan Sadpara says, we climbed K2 together on 27 July 2004 and we hoisted the Pakistani flag on Gasherbrum 1 on 22 July 2006. It is a world record that we both scaled G1 and G2 within the span of a week.”

He preferred, and never regretted, the climbing career. At the very early age of 21, his first successful expedition was to Sia Kangri (7,422 m).

“Since we first met each other in 2003, Mountaineer Nisar Hussain Sadpara has been a close friend of mine. He was my team member on Nanga Parbat, G2 and K2.

The 1999 South Korean expedition to Gasherbrum II was Nisar’s first expedition to an 8000er, led by Lee Sang Bae (8.035 m). When he was young, he was almost denied the opportunity to climb, but his strength amazed the Koreans so much that they retained him for seven more expeditions. It was a daring expedition to make the first winter ascent of G-1 and also via a new route.

Read also: The Chaqchan mosque of Khaplu Baltistan

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