Charles S. Houston
American Explorer of K2

Below are images pertaining to Charles Houston's K2 Expeditions
To see images of Houston's Earlier Years (including his pre-K2 Expeditions), click
To see more images of K2, click

1938 K2 Expedition

1938 K2 Expedition Group Photo. Left to Right (Back Row): Ghaffar Sheikh (in charge of porters), Bill House, Charlie Houston, Norman Streatfeild, Paul Petzoldt, Bob Bates, Dick Burdsall, and Ahdoo (Ghaffar's Lieutenant); Sitting: Pemba, Pintso, Pasang Kikuli, Pasang Kitar, Tse Tendrup, and Sonam

The 1938 American/British Climbers of K2. Back Row (Left to Right): Paul Petzoldt, Bob Bates, Dick Burdsall; Front Row (Left to Right): Charlie Houston, Norman Streatfeild, and Bill House

The Intended Route of the 1938 K2 Expedition. Although this Map Technically Depicts the French 1954 K2 Expedition, the Route is the Same as that Taken by Houston's 1938 Expedition (the Camp Locations shown are for the 1954 Expedition, not Houston's Expedition, though they are roughly similar). This Map Shows the Highest Point Reached During Houston's 1938 Expedition.

Route on the Abruzzi Ridge from Camp IV to High Point Reached - 1938 K2 Expedition

Charlie Houston and Bob Bates on the 1938 K2 Expedition

Bob Bates

Bob Bates, Charlie Houston, and Unidentified Climber with the Harvard Mountaineering Club Pendant on K2 (1938)

Pasang Kikuli, the Great Sherpa Climber During the Houston's 1938 K2 Expedition

Bob Bates Crossing "Rope Bridge" During Trek from Srinagar to K2

Base Camp - 1938 K2 Expedition

Lunch at Base Camp - 1938 K2 Expedition. Left to Right: Paul Petzoldt, Norman Streatfeild, Charlie Houston, Dick Burdsall, and Bob Bates

Savoia Pass, where the 1938 K2 Expedition Tried Three Times to Reach the Northwest Ridge of K2

Bill House Working Through Ice Blocks on the Savoia Glacier During the 1938 K2 Expedition

Camp II During the 1938 K2 Expedition ("the most spacious site on Abruzzi Ridge")

Photo Taken Just Above Camp II During the 1938 K2 Expedition

Paul Petzoldt Captured these Successive Photographs of an Avalanche on the South Face of K2 During the 1938 Expedition

Camp V (22,000 feet) - 1938

Camp VI (23,300 feet) - 1938

Near Camp VII - 1938

Looking Toward the Summit from 25,700 feet - 1938

Charlie Houston at 26,000 Feet, on the Shoulder of K2; this was the Highest Point Reached During the 1938 K2 Expedition

1953 K2 Expedition

1953 K2 Expedition Preparing to Board Flight to Pakistan. From Left to Right, on Tarmac: Bill White (expedition agent), Art Gilkey, Bob Craig; On the Steps: George Bell, Pete Schoening, Dee Molenaar, Charles Houston. (Bob Bates and Tony Streather were Already in Pakistan)

1953 K2 Ascent Route and Camps (Illustration by Dee Molenaar)

Crossing "Rope" Bridge En Route to K2 (1953)

Charlie Houston at K2 Base Camp (1953)

Brotherhood of Rope_web
"Brotherhood of the Rope" on K2 (1953)

Charlie Houston Navigating Steep Ground on K2 (1953)

Camp III (1953)

Location of the 1953 K2 Accident (marked with red X) - See Inset Below

Inset from Above Figure

The Famous Drawing of the Accident on Houston's 1953 K2 Expedition (by Dee Molinaar)

Pete Schoening

Descending to Base Camp After Accident

Houston's Team at the Art Gilkey Cairn Near K2 Base Camp (1953)

Charlie and Dorcas Embrace at the End of the 1953 K2 Expedition