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Permit & Paperwork

On the south side

To climb K2 from the Pakistani side, it is necessary to apply for permission from the Ministry of Tourism in Islamabad. The peak fee for south side expeditions is 12,000 USD for a team of up to 7 climbers, and 2,000 USD for each additional climber. For 2003 & 2004 the royalty has been decreased by 50% to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Nanga Parbat & K2. It means for this year the royalty for K2 is 6000 USD for 7 climbers & 1000 USD for each additional climber.

Likewise, royalty for Nanga Parbat, Gasherbrum I, Broad Peak, and Gasherbrum II is 9000 USD for a team of 7 and 1500 USD for each additional climber. For 2003 & 2004 the same 50% discount is available for these peaks. With the discount it comes to 4500 USD for 7 climbers & 750 USD for each additional climber. The same discount is valid for all peaks above 6000 meters.

In addition to the peak fee, you will need to put up a 6,000 USD rescue bond (completely refundable if it is not used), and a 200 USD environmental fee. K2 is approximately 50 Km. from Indian boarder so you will be required to travel with a Pakistani Army "Liaison Officer" (L.O.), and each expedition would provide his allowances & equipment etc. A reasonable budget for a mid-size team (without gear) is 8,000 USD per climber. For simply trekking to Base Camp, a reasonable budget is 3,000 USD per trekker.

Although the Ministry of Tourism can be contacted directly, it is advisable to hire an agent in Islamabad to assist with delivering paperwork to the Ministry, the customs hall, and other agencies.

The first Pakistani climber to climb K2, Ashraf Aman, owns and operates a company called Adventure Tours Pakistan. His contact information is as follows:

Phone:+92-51-2260820, 2252759, 2264253 Fax:+92-512264251 Mobile: +92-333-510-5671

E-mail: enquiry@atp.com.pk Web: http://www.atp.com.pk Remember that the prime climbing season on K2 is June through August. Permits must typically be secured by November (via a 1,000 USD deposit), although some exceptions have been allowed.

The designated Rules from the Ministry can be read here. . .

On the north side

To climb K2 from the Chinese side, it is necessary to apply for permission from the Chinese Mountaineering Association in Beijing. The permit fee is only approximately 1,000 USD per team on this side, but the miscellaneous expenses will add up to much more. Although the total package is negotiable, the Chinese side of K2 is generally about 50% more expensive than the Pakistani side. The email address for Mr. Ying Dao Shui, Vice Secretary-General of the CMA, is cma@sport.gov.cn (allow 1-2 weeks for response).

Whichever organizer you choose, the same rules apply as for organizing a trip to Everest. You really should keep all the negotiations with the tour operator in writing. Check Permit&Paperwork on the Everest section for a list of details to be discussed closely. When arriving in Pakistan, you need to check all the gear provided (fuel bottles and such) before leaving for the trek, in order not to be up for surprises upon reaching the mountain. You won't need a Letter of Recommendation to attain a climbing permit for K2.

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