The „Trail of Change“ is a long-term project, planned for up to the end of of 2015, including several expeditions. We want to document change in its topical variety, but in its spatial distribution as well to convey that it is not just a local process of alteration. Thus we travel into different regions of the Himalayas in Nepal, Pakistan and India. Alongside our own projects we visit and document research projects and accompany mountaineers on their expeditions. In 2013 the Trail of Change starts by two expeditions to Nepal.
In 2007 Hannes visited that remote valley region on the Nepal-Tibetan border for the first time, later writing his diploma thesis paper about it. The valleys had been closed for foreigners up to 2003, so that accordingly they are mainly unexplored. In 2009 Hannes and Nils came back to follow a decayed trade route in the neighboring region of Nar-Phu.
This year the Trail-of-Change-Expedition wants to find out which alterations have taken place in the relatively short reference period. That implies climate parameters like receding glacier tongues as well as, hopefully, the probably new focusing on trekking tourism. Jonas within the bounds of his bachelor thesis paper will examine the changing conditions of the local traditional yak alpine pasture farming.
As to mountaineering, the “Trail of Chang” crew of six plans to ascend the Seribung Peak (6300m). Assuming a successful ascent there, a second attempt of a first ascent of another 6000m summit will be made.
After the Damodar expedition, Hannes and Nils covering a Third-Pole job will have the chance to accompany a non-commercial Austrian skiing expedition to the eighth-highest mountain of the world. Nils as a base camp correspondent will report on the latest conflicts in this mountain region interviewing mountaineers as well as local residents and the climbing Sherpas who professionally work on the 8000s.
So the changing role of the Manaslu mountain from a rarely climbed 8000m-summit to an important commercial goal of expeditions will be highlighted.
Do the locals profit? How do they perceive the changes?
Hannes will accompany the mountaineering team along the classic Japanese route towards the summit filming the course of the expedition. Apart from experiencing the fact of ascending “by fair means” – which means without bottled oxygen and high mountain porters – Hannes wants to use the days on the mountain to critically deal with the effects of commercial expedition mountaineering and to carry out climate-related and glaciological examinations and observations in heights which he up to now had not reached.