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SETI

TEAM

So, we are here again. Our next expedition is planned for the period from the beginning of March to the second half of April, so for almost 7 weeks. Our target is in the massif of the eight-thousander Annapurna summit and is shrouded in many myths. Without exaggeration to say, that the size of the target and the risk of descent are enormous. Seti canyoning project is certainly huge for next few decades, which is why we have been preparing for it for several years. Opening of Chamjé Khola in 2011 was a great timeless expedition, but mainly a great training and adaptation for a completely new dimension of descents. First repetition of Chamjé and the first integral descent through the canyon in 2018 was a confirmation of this experience and preparation for other huge projects. Followed a precise individual preparation and teaming co-operation. And now it's here. Team is built internationally (Czech, Italy, France, USA, Germany, Belgium) with a large diversity of focus (canyoning, speleo, climbing, rescue, medicine).

LOCATION

Goal of the expedition in 2022 is the area of the Annapurna massif. Specifically, the area between Machapuchare (6993m) - Annapurna II (7937m) - Annapurna III (7555m) - Annapurna IV (7525m). The source of the river Seti is a glacial plateau "Sabche Cirque" with a catchment area of 50km2. It is accessible only by helicopter. Located at an altitude of 3400 to 5000 m.

PROJECT SETI

We have known about the location of the canyon for many years. Increased interest in this project since 2019. Descent by the SETI gorge will be the largest project in several decades. The gorge is unclimbed and is shrouded in many local myths. Size and dimensions are huge and stunning. The walls are sometimes up to 5000 m high and the whole area is very impressive. The area has the potential to open at least two more projects. One of them with an elevation of up to 2400m. Aim is to open these three projects during a 45-day stay in Nepal.

Seti Khola

Upper part - represents elevation of 600 m of dark, narrow and steep gorges first excavated in the limestone and granite layers of the deep "sewer" immediately between Machapuchare and Annapurna IV. All the progress at the upper part will, with a few exceptions, take place at the darkness. Canyon is very deep and narrow. According to the exploration from February 2021,  water flow will not be extreme. It is estimated that a maximum of A5 with technical passages (varies depending on the melting of the glacier day / night). Water temperature around 2 degrees. Mid part - is a challenging passage of about 3 km long central corridor with a width of 15 to 40 m. In the length of 3 - 4 km the river falls about 500 m down. Main corridor represents a descent deeply cut through gorges a labyrinth of huge stone blocks (tens of meters high), numerous river crossings and waterfalls up to 20 - 30 m high max. Lower part - already represents a relatively low risk. It is mainly about climbing in the river Seti riverbed. In the length of 6 km, the river flows down by 300 m. Numerous crossings of the river. Exit from the canyon is in the small village of Jimerbari, where are hot springs.

Romli Khola

A helicopter will not be needed for approach, but approach will definitely take at least 2 days. Descent one all day (16 - 20 hours) ... maybe 2 days. Trip together 3-4 days. Upper part - open, waterfalls up to 40m, middle part large waterfall 80 - 100m, lower part very steep. Expected level of difficulty V4/5 - A4/5.

Dangdunge Khola

It will be another huge project. Approach will be at least 4 days by walk. Last day through very challenging terrain. Every day it is 600 to 1500 m elevation. It is necessary to evaluate the use of the helicopter. Start at an altitude of more than 4200 m. Elevation 2400 m. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_0UUP9RZM4&feature=youtu.be - from 6:20 you can see the upper and start of the middle part of the canyon. Upper part - very narrow, steep, technical. No emergency exits. Estimated level of the watery of this part A4 - A5. Estimated duration of descent 2 days min. Middle part - open in places, but still very steep. Strong flow and rapidly changing descent dynamics. Estimated watery of this part at least A5. Estimated descent time 1 day. Lower part - open profile, possibility of escape into the jungle, many bypasses, high watery flow scattered in a wider riverbed. Estimated descent time 1 day. Descent together: 4 days min.

HISTORY

In May 2012 an struck in this area a extraordinary disaster. Due to very unstable and fragile geological conditions was torn from the south-western wall of Annapurna IV a hughe rock slab more than 500 m wide and 100 m thick which creating so-called phenomen "Himalayan tsunami". A huge avalanche of ice and rocks swept through the canyon, sweeping several villages in the upper Seti Gandaki delta in front of Pokhara. A large number of people died and many villages were destroyed. The first wave was up to 30 meters high and swept away everything in its path. The disaster was analyzed by the U.S. Geological Survey in collaboration with Japanese scientists who have conducted extensive research in the area to determine the cause. Wall of Annapurna IV is very unstable, so repeating such a catastrophe is only a matter of time. It's not about if, but when. Pokhara is the place where the meet Indian - Himalayan and Indian - Ocean plates. Last extreme earthquakes was in 2015. Gorge is unexplored, unclimbed and untouched by human feet. Video you can see here. Flight over Seti. It is possible to see only the start of the lower part of the canyon: https://youtu.be/I_0UUP9RZM4

You can support our expedition here:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/monster-under-annapurna-project-seti#/