Tadeuz Piotrowski was Jerzy Kukuczka’s partner in making the Polish Line route which is famous as one of the most difficult hiking routes in the world.
After successfully reaching the top of K2 on 8 July 1986, Tadeuz and Jurek decided to descend using the standard route from Abruzzi Spur. Dehydration and hunger from having nothing to eat for two days left Piotrowski weak and he lost a lot of energy.
This condition was exacerbated by the missing crampons and made his footrest very unstable. For that reason also later, Tadeuz fell and met his death in the ravine of Mount K2.
Throughout his extraordinary mountaineering career, Tadeuz has created countless amazing hikes.
However, it is generally known that Piotrowski’s outstanding achievements are mostly created in winter.
Some of the most popular for example are;
- 1972 in Trollryggen, Norway, in winter.
- 1973 in Noshaq, Afghanistan, in winter.
- 1974 repeated winter hikes at Trollryggen.
- 1977, Trollryggen again in winter.
- 1978 in Tirich Mir, Pakistan.
- 1979 in Rakaposhi, Pakistan.
- 1980, in Distaghil Sar, Karakoram, Pakistan.
- 1983 in the Api Mountains, Nepal, in winter.
- In 1986 at K2 mountain with Jurek Kukuczka made the Polish Line route.
In his long climbing journey, Tadeuz had twice lost friends.
The first incident was when he was climbing Lhotse in 1974 where Stanislaw Latallo died. While the second incident occurred in 1983 where he lost Andrzej Bielun who disappeared after successfully reaching a peak in the Api Mountains, Nepal.
The interesting thing about these two tragic events is when Tadeuz was shrouded in controversy regarding the death of Stanislaw Latallo in Lhotse. According to several source, at that time Tadeuz could actually save Latallo, but he didn’t.
Climbing the Polish Line route on the K2 mountain with Jerzy Kukuczka was perhaps his greatest achievement. The route is littered with dangerous hanging seracs, very unlikely to be crossed for the sober-minded climber.
Even Reinhold Messner called the route used by Jurek and Tadeuz a suicide route. And until now this route no one has dared to climb it again.