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Apr 132017
Everest 2017: Ueli Steck's Everest Lhotse Project

Climbers from all over the world are arriving at the base camps on both sides of Everest this week to attempt the standard routes but one Swiss Alpinist has a special plan in mind. Ueli Steck’s Everest Lhotse Project will be fun to watch. He and Tenji Sherpa will attempt to summit Everest by the never repeated West Ridge/Hornbein Couloir route, then descend to the South Col before taking the once climbed direct line just below the Lhotse Ridge to gain that summit. What is unique about Ueli and Tenji’s attempt is that no climbers have ever connected all these routes. They will continue reading

Apr 122017
Everest 2017: Base Camp Begins to Fill Up

The activity is building around Everest. Teams are trekking on the south and driving on the north and some are already at base camp. All is well on both sides of Everest at the moment. Early April is an awkward time in the Everest timeline. There are literally hundreds of people scattered from Kathmandu to Lhasa to the trekking peaks of Nepal to tiny desolate towns in Tibet, and a few beginning to adjust to life at base camp. Trek On! Post after post reveal the Khumbu is still filled with people making their way to base camp. The weather has been pretty good continue reading

Apr 102017
Everest 2017: Ice Serac Release Stalls Climbing

Reports of a serac release in the Icefall are coming in. There are no injuries. It appears a towering ice serac in the Khumbu Icefall just before the “Football Field” released burying the fixed ropes. The conditions were already tough on Monday, 10 April 2017 with very cold temps and high winds. There were around 30 Sherpas in the area who turned back due to the conditions then the route damage. James Brooman, climbing with IMG, was doing his first rotation thru the Icefall when they were stopped. Visit his very well done site for more pictures and a nice write continue reading

Apr 092017
Everest 2017: Weekend Update April 9

This past week on Everest has been busy with no surprises. Just like it should be in early April. And have no doubt, Everest will see record summits the spring of 2017. Excellent reporter Rajan Pokhrel of The Himalayan Times in Kathmandu reported that the Ministry of Tourism has already issued 250 permits for Everest to 27 teams representing 28 nationalities.  This represents almost $2 million in revenue for Nepal thus far. They are still expecting 500 foreigners. 70 Everest climbers used their 2015 permits that were extended due to the earthquake. The first teams arrived at Everest Base Camp (EBC) on the Nepal side continue reading

Apr 082017
Everest 2017: A Busy Season on the 8000ers

The world’s highest mountains are going to be busy this spring. Everest tops the list with perhaps 1,000 summits smashing all records. Currently, the trails of Nepal are filled with hundreds of climbers, porters and Sherpas and even more trekkers. The teahouses are full and the local economy is benefiting from what appears to be a full recovery from several poor years. And with the recovery comes the crowds. Predictions of a busy season are coming true, more so on the highest peak than any other. Excellent reporter Rajan Pokhrel of The Himalayan Times in Kathmandu reported that the Ministry of Tourism has continue reading

Apr 062017
Everest 2017: Free vs. Paid Weather Forecasts

We all know that weather can make or break an Everest summit, or the entire season. With so many climbers this year, a period of bad weather could result in nightmarish crowds. Similarly, a long period of good weather will allow the crowds to spread out resulting in a positive experience for most. As I recently cited, the normal range of suitable summit days ranges from 6 to 16 (average of 11 since 2001). That is where the winds are low (under 30 mph) and temperatures reasonable (higher than -20F). But if we have a repeat of only a few summit continue reading

Apr 052017
Everest 2017: Climbing the North Side with Jon Gupta, an Interview

A lot of attention is given to the Nepal side of Everest. It has more people, the risks are promoted heavily by those guiding from the north and of course, it was the side that saw the first summit back in 1953. And the north side has it’s share of fans, some perhaps even rabid these days. But one small team this year is just a guide, his client and two Sherpas. This was the usual profile for years as the north side was less expensive, had a wild feel to it and, by many testimonials, is a harder climb than the south. continue reading

Apr 022017
Everest 2017: Weekend Update April 2

Kathmandu has become flooded with climbers in addition to the normal spring trekkers. The hotels are full, the restaurants noisy and an overall feeling of anticipation in the air. Everest 2017 is well underway and it appears Nepal’s tourism industry has recovered from earthquakes, strikes and embargos. Each weekend during the season I will try to post a “Weekend Update” summarizing the main stories for the past week. The headlines this week are all about climbers flying into Kathmandu and some starting the trek to base camp and that the Icefall Doctors have the route to Camp 1, VERY early which might help continue reading

Mar 312017
Everest 2017: Interview with Jim Davidson

Those who have followed me most likely already know Jim Davidson.  Jim is well known as a professional speaking and his own survival struggle experience on Mt Rainier in 1992 that he chronicled in the New York Times best-selling book, The Ledge. I did a review and a Q&A with Jim back in 2011 when the book came out. We live in the same town in Colorado, climb together often and he probably saved my life this past February when a strong wind gust blew me off my feet on a Colorado mountain breaking my leg in four places. Jim was continue reading

Mar 302017
Everest 2017: My First Thought of Climbing Everest, and Your's?

Climbing Everest is a strange phenomenon. You spend more money than a really nice car costs, you train for a year, then you leave your family for two months with no guarantee that you will summit, and about five people die each year. So why do this? And don’t give the “because it’s there” answer! 🙂 I am always intrigued to learn when people first thought of climbing Everest and how that thought became reality. For me, that moment is etched clearly in my memory. Ama Dablam – No Way My first introduction to the Himalayas was in 1997 on a trek to Everest Base continue reading