Thursday, May 26, 2016

Four dead on Mt. Everest, Nepal (photos)

Phurba Sherpa, Sugam Pokharel (CNN, 5-23-16); Dhr. Seven, Seth Auberon, Wisdom Quarterly

Sherpa Tenzing Norgay and British Sir Edmund Hillary were first to summit in 1953.
  • A Nepalese  mountain Sherpa, a Dutch man, an Australian woman, and an Indian man are among the deaths
  • Two Indian climbers are missing, expedition organizers said
everest clean up 2010Avalanches killed 35 climbers on Mount Everest in the past two years -- including 16 in one devastating day in 2014. At least one person has died climbing the mountain in Nepal every year since 1900.
And now the 2016 climbing season has claimed its first victims.

Since last Thursday four people have died on the 29,035-foot peak, including a Sherpa. Rescue efforts are ongoing for two other missing climbers.

Is K2 higher? (Robbie Ryan/IFC Films/NPR)
"Everest is a mountain of extremes," said Jon Kedrowski, a geographer and climber who summited Mount Everest in 2012, when 10 climbers died. "At altitude, the body deteriorates on a certain level.

The recent deaths -- coming so quickly on the heels of one another -- have rattled climbers who are beginning their descent as the Everest climbing season nears its end. April and May are the most common months to attempt a climb because there tends to be less wind. Regardless, the climate on the mountain is brutal. Temperatures range from -31 to -4 Fahrenheit.

everest malavath poom 2014 - RESTRICTEDApril was the first month of climbing since all ascent was halted after the catastrophic earthquake that struck Nepal in 2015 and a deadly avalanche that killed 16 Sherpas in one day in 2014. More than 200 climbers have died since Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary made the first official ascent in 1953.

And yet the hopefuls keep coming. More than 400 people have attempted the Everest climb this season, including 288 foreigners and more than 100 Sherpas and guides, said Sudarshan Dhakal, director of the Nepal Tourism Department. That's more than the average for previous seasons, he said.

Here's a closer look at the recent fatalities. More + VIDEO
01 exploring everest
02 everest exploration - RESTRICTED
03 everest exploartion
04 everest exploration - mallory
05 everest exploration
06 everest exploration
07 everest exploration - footpring
08 everest exploration
09 everest exploration - RESTRICTED
10 everest exploration - Whittaker - RESTRICTED
11 everest exploration whittaker - RESTRICTED
12 everest - Khumbu
13 everest exploration
14 everest exploration - messner
15 everest exploration - RESTRICTED
16 everest exploration - 1996 - RESTRICTED
17 everest arsentiev - RESTRICTED
18 everest exploration
19 everest exploration
20 everest exploration
21 everest exploration - miura - RESTRICTED

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