Well, this Nepal season seems to be winding down finally. By my count, there is only one team left, and they are aiming for late in the week just as the weather gets worse. Meanwhile, Makalu still has some record seekers. The season has more records than a 1950’s jukebox.
8K Expeditions got nine on the summit on Tuesday, May 24:
1. Nawang Sherpa2. Andrey3. Ngima Sherpa4. Katya Lipka5. Pasang Tenje Sherpa6. Dawa Nuppu Sherpa7. Ashok Lama8. Ang Tsering Sherpa9. Pastenji Sherpa (TikTok)
Play Number M14
Over on Makalu is Norweigan Kristin Harila made the fastest link ever for
males or females between Everest and Lhotse, along with Dawa Ongju Sherpa and Pasadawa Sherpa. They summited Everest on May 22 at 8:45 am and then Lhotse at 5:50 pm – that’s 9:05 apart. I mistakenly said she set male and female records for the Everest-Lhotse link but it was only the female record. The fastest time for anyone, male or female, is held by Mingma Dorchi Sherpa made the link in six hours and one minute on May 27, 2019.
Now she’s on to Makalu base camp by helicopter. She is trying to set a record for summiting all 14 of the 8000-meter peaks in the fastest time. Pemba tells me they will ask for an entry exception to climb Shishapangma in China. And they will climb Cho Oyu from Nepal. Thus far this season, she has summited Kanchenjunga on May 14, Dhaulagiri on May 8, Annapurna I on April 28, and now Everest/Lhotse on May 22, 2022.
Also on Makalu is Adrianna Brownlee at 21 got Annapurna, then Kangchenjunga, and Lhotse this season. The Himalayan Database shows she summited Everest and attempted Lhotse last year but turned back on Lhotse due to dangerous conditions. However, her website claimed summits of Manaslu (fore summit pic on IG), Dhaulagiri (summit pic on IG) also in 2021. She was on the 2021/22 Winter K2 climb but left without a summit attempt. She says, “My aim is to become the youngest person to complete all 14 8000m peaks. The current record is 30 years 166 days, held by Mingma “David” Gyabu Sherpa, an absolute legend with whom I got to climb on both K2 and Everest. My plan would be to summit all 14 in 3-4 years, meaning I would be 23 years old when I complete my mission.”
Another climber with a disability we’ve been watching is Canadian mountaineer Jill Wheatley, who hopes to summit all fourteen of the 8000ers to break down the stigma associated with traumatic brain injury, vision loss, and eating disorders. She got Dhaulagiri with the Nepali company Imagine Nepal.
And not to be left out are the Pakistani duo who are also aiming for 8000ers records Shehroze Kashif and Sirbaz Khan. I like what Sirbaz says about building a connection wi the mountain:
Alhamdulilah, I have completed my rotations on Mt Makalu within 3 days of reaching the base camp as I established the last camp today at 7470 meters and returned back to the base camp. These rotations are important and necessary as, 1) I aim to summit Mt Makalu, the fifth highest peak in the world, without using supplementary oxygen. 2) I carry and deposit all my camps/food/equipment, etc. to the higher camps myself. 3) It is important to build a connection with the mountain, to listen to it and learn from it. It has always worked for me like that. Now, it’s time to take some rest and then we plan for the summit.
We’ve been following James Mcmanus from County Tipperary, located between Cork and Dublin made a no O’s attempt aiming to become the first Irish on top without using supplementary oxygen, but he turned back during his attempt citing weather concerns according to the excellent work of Paul Devaney and Irish Seven Summits.
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Does climbing Everest have any meaning anymore ? Is it just an adventure tourist attraction now ? Sure, one has to have the fitness of an 13 year old or an 80 year old. Beyond that, money takes care of everything else. Sherpas carry your stuff, set up camps, fix the ropes a la via feratta. Wait in camp for a favorable weather window, rely on the judgement of others, turn on the O’s, clip into the fixed rope, a baby sitting sherpa mades sure you don’t get in trouble, wait in line for the summit photo. One really doesn’t have to know much anymore. I guess it was inevitable that climbing Everest would be turned into a commercial operation…
The model you approximate, Steve, started in 1992, so it’s nothing new. What is new is that the old guard used to vet their clients for some modicum of experience. Today, many low-end guide companies will take anyone with money, so I’m that respect, I agree with you.
All this said, “Does climbing Everest have any meaning anymore?” It does to the person who made it.
Thanks for your thoughtful reply Alan. I wonder if someday we will see a European Alps style hut (really a building) at the South Col. I think it would have many benefits. It could be used as a safety fall back in weather or medical emergencies. It could be used as a supply depot for ropes, oxygen bottles etc, It could house a weather and communications station. Most importantly, it would have the potential to save lives.
If a structure were to be built it’s more likely where Camp 2 is now, around 21,000’/6400m. 8000m is really high, obviously. 🙂 I can foresee a day that helicopters will fly climbers to today’s C2 due to instability in the Icefall and the Western Cwm.
with a near perfect weather for some days and several climbers going for multi-peaks, Spring 2022 is witnessing more than 1.000 summits… incredible
Love your website and updates Alan. Thanks for all you do.
Hello Alan! What about the Catari Princess and the FIFA World Cup ball? Did they sumitted with Nims?