Click for site home
The Blog on
Climbing the World to End Alzheimer's
Jun 162021
Everest 2021: Video Interview with Art Muir - Oldest American Summiter

Art Muir at age 75 became the oldest American to summit Mt. Everest on May 12, 2021, with Maddison Mountaineering. He surpassed Bill Burke who held the American Everest age record for 11 years. Burke summited at age 67 on the Nepal side and again from the Tibet side in 2014 at 72. Japanese mountaineer Yoichiro Miura is the oldest person to summit in 2013 at age 80.

I spoke with Art about his motivation, how his family felt about his plans, his 2019 attempt, prior climbing experience then we got into his training, diet, and experience on the climb. We wrapped up with Art’s thoughts on seniors climbing and staying active.

Jun 032021
Everest 2021 Season Summary: The Year Nepal Broke Everest

Satire sprinkled with a few annoying facts.

As I sat down to write a recap of the 2021 spring season on Everest, these words came to mind: COVID, coverup, lies, misdirection, personal attacks, denials. Oh, and cyclones, wind, waiting, risk, and yes, summits. But, oh my, at what a cost? If 2019 was the year Everest broke, 2021 was the year Nepal broke Everest.

Jun 022021
Everest 2021: Wave 6 Recap. And the Season is a Wrap!

A reported 41 people (22 members with 19 Sherpa) summited on Tuesday, June 1 ending the season. Others canceled for various reasons from health to conditions. Heavy snow stopped additional Lhotse summits. By my count: 195 members with 339 Sheras thus far, for a total of 534 summits. The season should be over now with the Icefall Doctors closing the route on June 3.

May 292021

Heavy snow has finally ended but there is talk of avalanches, stolen oxygen and the Icefall Doctors extending maintaining the route a few more days. Dan Mazur of Summit Climb made news with a dramatic post telling that Camp 3 on the Lhotse Face was destroyed by an avalanche. His source was an unnamed Sherpa: 28 May – Challenging Weather + Team Dynamics – Storm intensifies; all 20 of us remain pinned down in basecamp by driving wind blowing horizontal curtains of blasted snow chunks/flakes, steady drumroll of whipping prayer flags + flapping nylon. We may feel nervous here in bc, continue reading

May 282021
Everest 2021: Weather Hold

Heavy snow continues on Everest, but a couple of teams at C2 hoping for a summit window from May 29-31.

Garrett Madison tells me from Base Camp around 10 am Friday, May 28, “Snowing hard here in EBC..climbers worried now about too much snow & avalanche danger on the Lhotse face…SPCC closing the icefall May 31, if climbers stay longer up high they might need to helicopter out from C2”

May 272021
Everest 2021: Delays Due to Cyclone Yaas

Heavy snow was reported on Everest, but some teams are reporting low winds. Once again, the truth is opaque on Everest. The gag order by the Nepal government has had a dramatic impact on teams’ willingness to share any information that could be construed as negative, thus all the happy talk. A handful of teams are still eyeing the end of the month for one last try.

Cyclone Yaas is expected to touch Everest for another 24 to 48 hours or until May 29, thus leaving an opening as early as Saturday but more likely Sunday and Monday. No doubt any team trying to make this last chance will be met with deep snow. It will take a strong group of many Sherpas to break trail.  Avalanche risk may be present especially since the teams will not have the choice to wait a day or two for the layers to bond.

Meanwhile, in a press release, Nepal’s home ministry calls expedition agencies and tourism officials ‘to make an immediate return of climbers from mountains.” Most computer-based weather forecasts call for winds to decrease to under 15 mph starting on Sunday, May 30.

May 262021
Everest 2021: More Cancellations due to COVID and Wind

If it’s not COVID, it’s the winds. two more teams end their expedition early telling climbers, “it’s over.” A handful are still eyeing the end of the week for one last try.

With Cyclone Yaas making landfall in India, the winds are touching Everest. Nepal’s Meteorological Forecasting Division said the storm is now in the process of ‘weakening’, but will impact the weather in Nepal till Saturday. Not good news for those holding for it to pass. The Icefall Docs said they will shut down the route on May 31, Saturday. However, they might be talked into another extension.