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May 202018
Everest 2018: Dead on Everest Japanese Alpinist Nobukazu Kuriki

Stunning news that Japanese climber Nobukazu Kuriki was found dead at Camp 2 on the Nepal side of Everest on the Standard route. The Himalayan Times reports that Sherpas found him at C2. I had just reported that he was feeling better after a cough and was prepared to go higher on an unspecified route. He had struggled in 2018 with a high fever and a cough. Personally, I am shocked as I always found his climbs inspirational. Update: Its now being reported that he reached C3 on the Lhotse Face and began to have problems with coughing and pain. Intermittent radio contact continue reading

May 072018
Missing Climber on Shishapangma

Bulgarian Boyan Petrov (45) is reported missing on the only 8000-meter peak fully within Tibet, Shishapangma. The working assumption is that he left for the summit, alone, and never made it. He left base camp with other climbers on 29 April but choose to stay when others left as the weather detoriated. He was spotted near Camp 3 by teammates at base camp using a telescope according to Facebook posts from his home team, Khalifa Himalayan Expedition, in Bulgaria. At this point he was climbing solo, no radio and without supplemental oxygen – his normal style for 8000ers. On May 5, continue reading

Apr 142018
Everest 2018: Weekend Update April 15

Mid April is always a milestone for the spring Everest climbers. One by one they are arriving at base camp on both sides of the mountain. It looks like the first member rotations will start in about a week on the Nepal side, perhaps earlier. The Sherpas are already making carries into the Western Cwm. Base Camp is quickly coming together on the Tibet side. The weather seems to have calmed a bit with less rain than 10 days ago but still weather is weather. As Brian Palmer said on his Facebook feed, “My home for the next 4-6 weeks. continue reading

Apr 102018
Everest 2018: The Critics Corner

I’ve been covering Everest since 2002 and each year about this time in my coverage I get the usual comments decrying the commercialism, the tourism, the lack of skills by the climbers, the lack of challenge and more. Usually I ignore the comments and in rash cases delete them when they become personal or simply irrational, of course in my humble opinion. 🙂 After all, this blog is about celebrating the challenge of mountaineering, not a platform for those with agendas to put down others by their artificial definitions of what is a “good” climb.  I fully accept and respect continue reading

Apr 072018
Everest 2018: Weekend Update April 7

The first Sherpa team arrived at the Chinese Base Camp (CBC) on Tibet side for #Everest2018. Meanwhile more teams are arriving at Everest Base Camp (EBC) on the Nepal side. Everything seems to be on schedule thus far for the season. The Big Picture This past week on Everest has been busy with no surprises, just like it should be in early April. The weather is bit cloudy with rain down low and snow up high. In fact there are reports of heavy snowfall at EBC – but again this is fairly normal for early May. The Himalayan Times reported continue reading

Apr 012018
Everest 2018: Weekend Update April 1

Well, it’s the 1st of April and the Everest machine is fully operational. Climbers from around the world are streaming into Kathmandu and others to Lhasa to begin their journey to the base camps on opposite sides of Mount Everest. For those just arriving, the excitement is palpable. For those left back home, the reality is just setting in. And for those who climbed last year, but are home today, their emotions are mixed. K-k-k-k-k-k Katmandu When the airplane door opens, you feel Nepal. You can taste the humidity, the thick air of Kathmandu. Deep down you know that your continue reading

Mar 072018
Nepal Supreme Court Allows Disabled Climbers

In a dramatic, and reasonable move, the Nepal Supreme Court has struck down a new rule by Nepal’s Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation to ban climbers with double amputations and blindness. The case was brought on behalf of double amputee Hari Budha Magar who is a former British Gurkha. Mager reacted on Facebook with “What a great news to hear when I wake up this morning. Now, we have summited a bureaucratic Mt. Everest. The justice has served! Thank you Supreme Court, you are our hope to get justice. This is true example of Nepalese judiciary system, keep it up! continue reading

Mar 052018
K2 Team Ends Winter Expedition

The Winter Polish K2 team ended their effort after K2 had seen over 80cm/31 inches of new snow that buried ropes and destroyed high camps. The climbing community is now 0 for 4 with attempts to summit K2 in the winter since 1987/88. See this post for full background on the K2 and Everest expeditions and the history of winter attempts on the highest two mountains on Earth. Big Picture – Facing Reality With 15 days left, the Poles needed to finish their acclimatization rotation, stock the high camps and then have a multi-day weather window open.  Given that all three continue reading

Mar 012018
The Definition of Winter for K2 and Everest Climbs

With the drama dissipating from K2, the Polish team remains at base camp waiting for better weather. Everest is now officially over but the debate about when winter ends, will continue forever. See this post for full background on the K2 and Everest expeditions and the history of winter attempts on the highest two mountains on Earth. Big Picture – When does Winter End? One of the big questions this season on both K2 and Everest is “When does winter officially end?” If you have been reading my blog  you might have seen comments from readers with clear views, for continue reading

Feb 272018
K2 Team Focuses on the Summit. Another Everest Attempt?

Denis Urubko remains at base camp along with the drama. Now that he is off  the team, the remaining climbers are focusing on a potential summit push around mid March.  Alex Txikon suggested he ended his winter Everest attempt with his permit expiring on 28 February but today said maybe not! See this post for full background on the K2 and Everest expeditions and the history of winter attempts on the highest two mountains on Earth. Big Picture – Weather Watch Part 5,693 Once again it’s all about the weather. The winds stopped Txikon on Everest and the winds stopped continue reading