Autumn 2019 Himalayan Season: China Issues Shishapangma Permit to Nirmal Purja

Shisha Pangma

Multiple media outlets are reporting that China has agreed to give Nirmal Purja a permit to climb Shishapangma to achieve his self-imposed timetable of November 23 to summit all 14 of the 8000ers in seven months. Thus far there has been no word on Nirmal Purja’s social media. The news broke on this Italian website and then after I reached out to the Himalaya Times to confirm this story they reported:

“Dawa Sherpa, Managing Director at Climbalaya Treks told THT that he received a message from China and Tibet Mountaineering Association that Purja-led team would get a special permit for Mt Shishapangma at the request of Nepal’s government. Chinese authorities have clearly conveyed me a message that Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu will do necessary arrangement to secure a Shishapangma climbing permit for Purja and his team of Project Possible at the earliest,” Sherpa, who runs mountaineering expeditions in Tibet, said.

Further, they noted; “As the embassy remains closed for a week to mark 70 years of Communist rule, a process to issue permit would start after October 8.” So Nirmal Purja will accept a delay before his attempt. He needs to complete his mission before November 23 to meet his goal of seven months.

Note there are a lot of conditional clauses in these statements so I remain cautious that Nirmal Purja is 100% in but, again, he needs to summit Shish by November 23 to meet his own declared goal.

Project Possible: China Approves

Of course, we all know Nirmal Purja’s project is to summit all 14 of the 8000ers in seven months. Now he has 13 in a mere 157 days: Annapurna (April 23), Dhaulagiri, Kangchenjunga, Makalu, Everest, Lhotse, Nanga Parbat, Gasherbrum I, Gasherbrum II, K2, Broad Peak and Cho Oyu and, Manaslu (Sept 27). He needs to complete Shish by November 23 to meet his goal of seven months.

China has said all foreigners must be out of Tibet no later than October 1 fearing protests around China’s National Day which commemorates the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. Additionally, China had said no climbing on Shishapangma a few months ago after a string of deaths and accidents on the lowest of the fourteen 8000ers. They officially have stated they believe the mountain had become too dangerous to climb but most likely that is just an excuse to keep people out of Tibet right now.

Obviously, Nirmal Purja and his team are highly qualified to attempt Shish. Meanwhile, Nirmal Purja is using his global fame to talk about climate change:

More updates as I get them.

Climb On!
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