LATEST HEADLINE May 31: Season Over
11 Everest Deaths, 900 estimated total summits
Welcome to the 2019 edition of Alan Arnette’s annual coverage of the Everest climbing season. I try to provide insight and interpretation of the activities ranging from routes to weather to the challenge and reward of climbing Everest.
It’s based on my own three Everest attempts and my 2011 summit plus my climbing experiences of a K2 summit in 2014, Manaslu in 2013 and 30+ more peaks around the world. My reporting uses my own research, sources, and public information.
Click for the complete Everest 2019 coverage
Read Alan’s complete Everest 2019 Season Summary
- The Everest 2019 season is over with a member summit rate of 73% on the Nepal side
- My preliminary stats show:
- Nepal: 281 members, 378 support for 659 total
- Tibet: 120 members, 121 support for 241 total
- Deaths: 11
- Nepal: 9
- Tibet: 2
- “Low-cost” Operators: 8
- “High-End” Operators: 3
- Crowd Related: 3
- Fall: 1
- Health: 3
- Altitude Related: 8
- May 27 summits by Climbing the Seven Summits on Nepal side with no one else around.
- Alpenglow member summits Everest- Tibet 10 days from home
- Muhammad Ali Sadpara summited Lhotse 16 May 2016
- Disappointment on there Tibet side that the rope fixers didn’t take advantage of good weather on 15 May
- EverestER on the Nepal side “After 35 operational days we have just passed 500 patient consultations! With summit week upon us, we expect this number to continue to shoot up. We are seeing much more frostbite and altitude related conditions.”
- Over 25 Makalu summit to date
- Over 30 on Kangchenjunga
- Chinese rope team back to 8300m on Tibet side
- Tanzania plans cable car for Mount Kilimanjaro – no joke. source
- Some Nepal climbers are back in KTM for R&R
- 100 tents reported blown away at C2 on Nepal Side
- Nepal has issued a record 379 climbing permits to foreigners as of 15 May April, 92 for Lhotse
- Lots of frustration with EverestLink this year
- Top countries on Nepal side of Everest: India (75), US (74), China (60), UK (43), Nepal – members, not working (13)
- Madison Mountaineering and team are coordinating getting loads to C2 with the rope to fix the route to the summit.
- April 18: Honoring the Sherpas who died in 2014.
- It looks like there are 364 total people on the Tibet side made up of 144 foreigners, 12 Chinese and 208 Nepalese Sherpa. An additional 73 are reported to be visiting or working at base camp. source
- A Summit Air airplane veered of the runway in Lukla hitting a helicopter. Three people have died – a pilot and two police officers
- My early estimate shows over 350 members with 340 Sherpas on Nepal side and 185 members with 150 Sherpas on the Tibet side for total of 500 members/590 Sherpas. Expect these numbers to grow by 25% when the climbing begins in mid April.
- 2018 was record year with 396 members/406 support, totaling 802 summits by all climbers, all routes.
- February 27, 2019, an Air Dynasty helicopter carrying Tourism Minister Rabindra Adhikari and six other people crashed killing all onboard while flying in a snowstorm.
Deaths/Missing – 21 Total – 11 on Everest
- Climbing The Seven Summits, Everest, May 27: American, Christopher Jon Kulish, 61, died near South Col after summiting
- Summit Climb, Everest, May 25: British Robin Haynes Fisher, 44, died on descent after summiting
- Himalayan Ski Treks, Everest, May 24: Nepali Dhruba Bista, 32, died a EBC after evacuation from C3
- Seven Summits Treks, Makalu, May 24: Sherpa Nima Tshering Sherpa, died after summiting at C2
- 360 Expeditions, Everest, May 24: Irish Kevin Hynes, 56, Irish died at North Col after turning back at 8300m. He had previously summited Everest South and Lhotse.
- Peak Promotion, Everest, May 23: Indian Nihal Bagwan, 25, : Indian, near the South Col
- Kobler & Partner, Everest, May 23:Ing ‘ Ernst’ Landgraf, 65, died on the 2nd Step after summiting
- Dreamers Destination Treks, Everest, May 23: Indian Kalpana Dash, 52, Odisha, India died after summit on descent near Balcony
- Guided by India’s Transcend with logistics from Arun Treks, Everest, May 22: Indian Anjali S Kulkarni, 54 ,from Mumbai, India died after summit on descent near C4
- Pioneer Adventures, Everest, May 22: American Don Cash, 54, dead near Hillary Step
- Seven Summit Treks, Everest, May 17: Indian Ravi Thakar, dead near C4 after summit
- Seven Summit Treks, Everest, May 16: Irish Seamus Sean Lawless, 39, missing, presumed dead after slipping near the South Col
- Seven Summit Treks, Makalu, May 16: India Dipankar Ghos, 53, missing after summit
- Seven Summits Treks, Annapurna, May 3: Malaysian Wui Kin Chin, 48, cause of death unknown. exposed for 3 days at 8400m after summit
- Seven Summits Trek, Makalu, May 16:Indian Narayan Singh, 35, died of altitude illness at 8200m
- Independent, Makalu, May 8: Peruvian Richard Hidalgo, 52, died in tent at 6,300m, climbing with no Os.
- Peak Promotion, Kangchenjunga, May 15,:Indian Biplab Baidya, 48, altitude sickness
- Peak Promotion, Kangchenjunga, May 15: Indian Kuntal Karar, 46, altitude sickness
- Peak Promotion, Kangchenjunga, May 15: Chilean Rodrigo Vivanco missing, presumed dead
- Makalu Xtreme, Lhotse, May 17: Bulgarian Ivan Yuriev Tomov, 35, died after no Os’/support summit
- Summit Climb, Cho Oyu, April 29: Phujung Bhote Sherpa fell into a crevasse while fixing rope near Camp 2
Connect and Support
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- I do coverage for one reason only, raising awareness and funds to slow, stop or prevent Alzheimer’s Disease. If you visit often and appreciate this site, please consider a donation to an Alzheimer’s nonprofit. 100% goes to them, nothing ever to me. Click this link to understand my personal journey with AD that took Ida Arnette in 2009.
South Col Route (map)
locations are for the majority of each team, individuals may be higher or lower
Everest only TEAMS
(362 members/16 western guides)
|Fixed Line Progress||X|
|Adventure Consultants: 7/4 64% member summit||e||9/12|
|Alpine Ascents Int.: 11/2 – 84% member summit||e||11/11|
|Asian Trekking (27)||e||7/12|
|Benegas Brothers: 5/2 – 80% member summit||e||4/4|
|CTSS – Mike Hamill: 29/5 – 79% member summit||e||23/35|
|Himex: 5/2 – 80% member summit||e||4/3|
|IMG: 22/0 – 63% member summit||e||14/36|
|Imagine Nepal (10/0) 80% member summit||e||8/7|
|Jagged Globe : 9/1 85% member summit||e||6/6|
|Madison Mountaineering 15/3-73% member smt||e||11/21|
|Myrmidon Expeditions (9/2)||e||4/4|
|Satori Adventures 13/0 – 69% member summit||e||9/15|
|Summit Climb 6/1 – 100% member summit||e||6/4|
|Seven Summits Treks International: 15/0 66%||e||8/7|
|Seven Summits Treks: Indian Army: 13/0 84%||e||16/13|
|Seven Summits Treks (15/0) Chinese||e||15/13|
|Tim Mosedale (1/1)||e|
|Transcend Adventures :6/1 – 50% member summit||e||3/6|
|SOUTH TOTAL (est)||281/378 (659)|
Northeast Ridge Route (map)
locations are for the majority of each team, individuals may be higher or lower
(144 foreigners, 12 Chinese, 208 Sherpa)
|Fixed Line Progress||X|
|360 Expeditions (6/1)||e||4/4|
|Adventure Int’l (Scott Woolums) (1/1)||e|
|7 Summits Treks/Arnold Coster (7/1)||e||10/12|
|Climbalaya/Satori Adventures (20/0)||e||7/7|
|Furtenbach Adventures (15/4)||e||12?/16?|
|Kobler & Partner (10/2)||e||4?/4?|
|Summit Climb (7/1)||e||4/4|
|Transcend Adventures (16/1)||e||4?/4?|
|7 Summits Club (30/4)||e||7?/7?|
|NORTH TOTAL (est)||121/120 (241)|
|LEGEND T/D=Trek/Driving to BC, K=Kathmandu, La=Lhasa, Lo=Lobuche, e=climb ended, x=last reported location, x+ =on summit bid, -x =descending h=high sleep point, t=touched not slept. Summit number=member/Sherpa. Locations estimated from public websites. Please refer to each expedition’s site for current information. Contact me to add/remove your team from my coverage.|
Not providing enough updates to track or comment
(91 members/0 western guides)
|Alpine Sherpa Guide: 1 member, 1 Sherpa|
|Himalaya Expeditions (7-S, 16-N): NSG Indian Army: 7 members, 7 Sherpas|
|Ascent Himalayas: 7 members, 7 Sherpas 53% member summit|
|Dreamers Destination :5/8 100% member summit|
|Everest Quest 7 members 7 Sherpas 77% member summits|
|Happy Feet 4 members, 4 Sherpas|
|Himalayan Experience: 4 members 3 Sherpas 57% member summits|
|Himalaya Expedition – Indian Army (12-S/0)|
|Himalayan Traverse (3/0)|
|Kaitu Expedition 12 members, 16 Sherpas – 100% member summit|
|Myrmidon Expeditions (9-S) 0 members/0 Sherpas|
|Glacier Himalaya (4-S)|
|Pioneer Adventure 1 member, 2 Sherpa12/22 – 80% member summit|
|Summit Nepal Treks (7-S)|
|Sung Taek Hong on Lhotse (7/0)|
I did similar coverage for the 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 seasons. I summited Everest on May 21, 2011, and have attempted Everest three other times – 2002, 2003, 2008 and Lhotse in 2015 and 2016. If you will forgive the self-promotion Outside Magazine posted an extensive interview with me and called me “one of the world’s most respected chronicler of Everest”
I do this coverage for one reason only, raising awareness and funds to find a way to slow, stop or prevent Alzheimer’s Disease. If you visit often and appreciate this site, please consider a donation to an Alzheimer’s nonprofit. 100% goes to them, nothing ever to me. Click this link to understand my personal journey with AD that took Ida Arnette in 2009.
|not intended to replace professional forecasts or for critical decisions|
I’ve been following your blog for a few years now to try and track a work colleague who has attempted Everest 4 times now without o2. He was lucky to survive the avalanche and this year was found unconscious at 7500m by a mountaineering team. Considering he was climbing with a professional mob, who seem to have multiple deaths this year, did his team just leave him behind while they pushed on for the summit. He’s recovering in hospital so again he was lucky. Gil, even Everest is telling you to stop trying without o2
Those who try without Os have a tough success rate. Since 1953, there have been 153 member (not Sherpa) summits without Os. 61 who tried without Os have died. Of those, 13 died after summiting and 48 did not summit and died.
Will you be covering K2 in June/July??
Yes, but not as extensively given there are fewer teams who provide fewer updates.
Is the Nima Tshering Sherpa who died on Makalu the same Nima Tshering Sherpa who was with Wui Kin Chin? Both incidents mention Seven Summits Treks.
No the Annapurna Nima has frostbitten toes and may loose several.
R u revie the nihal bagwan”s any new status from india.
The summit climb expedition on Tibet side has reached camp 2 at 7900m today may 21st.
I teach 7th grade, and every year we follow your blog. It coincides perfectly with our geography unit on Monsoon Asia, and brings the information to life better than our textbook can! Thank you for your insights each year!
Glad they are enjoying it again this year Lori! Thanks for letting me know. Say hi to the kids for me 🙂
Love all the logistical/admin/tactical details in your reporting. After reading every word I can find on 2019 Everest season, I’m slowly coming to the realization that you are forced to wade thru a lot of stuff that is…….well…..a bit spun. I realize that you must chose your words carefully and present opinions gently to be able to continue to do this so effectively.
Based on all I’ve read in the past few days, it appears that many of the climbers feel that their acclimatization (“rotations”) are complete. Is there a scientific test to determine this (pulse ox, pulse, respiration rate, etc, etc)? ……or do they just say, “hey, I’ve been up to C2 three times and C3 once….let’s go”.
Love ya Alan. You’re the best.
Thanks Kent, I sincerely appreciate your comments. Yes, it’s a lot of work to sift through the spin versus the real news. Thats why I appreciate individuals who post their experiences. But I also have a good relationship with many of the commercial guides and can trust their answers to my questions. If I feel it is spin, I don’t post it.
As for when are you acclimatized? Based on decades of climbing to 8000 meters, its pretty well understood now that you need to be able to get to at least 7000 meters and not horribly struggle. Times are the common measure but as you suggest, O2 Sat can be part of it as well and other indicators.
The big test is during the summit push and how fast a person is going. If they are too slow, then the responsible operator will pull them back for their own safety. And this is the difference between operators, imho.
I’ve been reading about the wind at C2 and above. There were comments that some teams took down the tents and “ cached” the contents. Can you explain how this works? How do teams locate their cache when the area is covered with new snow?
Hey Kent, There are a couple methods. They can take the tent complete down and put in its stuff sack and try to bury it or put inside a larger tent like the dining tent or more likely they just collapse it by taking the poles out and put a few heavy rocks on top to try and keep it from blowing away. They probably took a lot of the random gear and “cached” it inside the dining tent where the cooks rode out the storm – tough duty to be sure.
Maybe I’m wrong here and maybe I am influenced by some incidents that happend quite lately. But why do you guys put ur life at risk? What for? For yourselves? Pls don’t fool u! One really close friend of mine happened to carry down his “Co-trekker”, who showed obvious signs of high altitude sickness, was then exhausted, went to bed and never woke up again. It’s not only adventurous, as ur posts might pretend, it’s dangerous, even to go to base camp!
They do it because they have to. If ya don’t understand you never will. Don’t hate just appreciate. Those guys are amazing keep it up.
This is nimsdai ‘s post in the Annapurna rescue if you haven’t seen it.
Yes, I quoted from that and more in the April 28 Weekend Update. Thanks.
what do you know about Mark Synnott and his north face attempt?
Haven’t heard about this? Where did you see it?
I asked him if he was available to climb in NH at the end of May and he wrote back that he was leaving for Everest and will not be back. Then I hear a podcast where they were talking to him about his new book and at the end he said that he was leaving next day for Everest North Face. I would think that if he is going, North Face and/or Nat Geo would be involved.