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Island Peak is an enjoyable mountain peak with the most spectacular scenery in the Everest region. In 1952 a climbing team led by Eric Shipton gave name to this mountain ‘ Island Peak’ because of its challenging geographical location in the middle of the Chhukung valley between Mount Ama Dablam and Lho The mountain itself is the extension of the South Ridge of Lhotse Shar separated by a small col. But in the early ’80s, it was renamed and called “Imje Tse Peak”. Despite its original name, this peak is still very popular among the climbers due to the thrill of adventure.
The peak looks like an Island in the middle of the sea of ice. The mainland forms a semi-circle of cliffs that rise in the north to the rugged summit of Nuptse (7,879m), Lhotse (9,501m) Lhotse middle peak (8,410m) and Lhotse Shar (8,383m) to the east. Rising above the frozen Lhotse Shar glacier is Cho polu (6,734m), beyond which the red granite mass of Makalu (8475m) can be seen. To the south of the Imja glacier and icy flutings of Baruntse (7720m) and the Amphu peaks lead the eye to the lofty pinnacle of Ama Dablam (6856m), which also looks like a giant sea –guarding the entrance to the glacial bay in which Island peak stands. The spectacular views from the top of Island Peak are certainly a rewarding experience for every climber. Its west face is highly glaciated and Island peak itself is the extension of the South Ridge of Lhotse Shar separated by a small col.
The normal climbing route for Island Peak is via South East Flank & South-West Ridge. Island Peak base camp is set up at Pareshaya Gyab (5,087m), between Imja Tse and the lateral moraine of the Imja Glacier. We need to take extra care to avoid the possible avalanche in case of heavy snowfall along the route during the climb. At the base camp, we need to acclimatize properly to make the summit and return to the base camp in a day., Most of the climbers prefer alpine style camping at high camp which adds extra joy of Island Peak climbing and helps a safe ascent to the base camp.