10 facts about Everest success and death rates, based on scientific data

10 facts about Everest success and death rates, based on scientific data

How much does overcrowding, experience, age and sex affect how likely a climber is to reach the summit of Everest or die trying? A scientific paper was published last week that addressed these very questions. So what did it conclude?

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Is it time to boycott the south side of Everest?

Is it time to boycott the south side of Everest?

The problems which occurred on Everest this year are nothing new, but they have now reached such a degree that it’s time for operators who value their reputation and for those who dream of climbing Everest to take a principled stand.

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Did Everest’s Hillary Step collapse in the Nepal earthquake?

Did Everest’s Hillary Step collapse in the Nepal earthquake?

There are rumours that the iconic Hillary Step, Everest’s most feared obstacle on summit day, collapsed in last year’s earthquake, and has become little more than an easy snow slope. Can it be true? I examine the evidence.

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Poo in the Everest region: is it such a big problem?

Poo in the Everest region: is it such a big problem?

Recently I wrote a satirical piece about a fictional washroom at Everest Base Camp as a reaction to more sensationalised media reporting about Everest. But the reports contained a grain of truth that I intend to fertilise in this post.

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When expedition operators should be taken with a pinch of salt

When expedition operators should be taken with a pinch of salt

It was silly season in the media again last week, when the BBC latched onto another Everest story. But while the media were busy having their usual feeding frenzy, expedition operators didn’t help by squabbling among themselves.

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Is K2 the new Everest?

Is K2 the new Everest?

There were remarkable events on K2 this week, with record numbers of climbers reaching the summit. K2 is regarded as one of the hardest mountains in the world, but has it now become within the range of less experienced commercial climbers?

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Everest’s most extraordinary false summit claim

Everest’s most extraordinary false summit claim

Last week the world’s mainstream media were awash with stories about the world’s first dog to climb Mount Everest. It was a heart-warming tale about a cute little doggie who had been rescued from a garbage dump in India and went on to become a pioneering canine mountaineer. But how on earth could it be true?

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Summit day on Manaslu: what’s it really like?

Summit day on Manaslu: what’s it really like?

Variable snow conditions mean summits of mountains can differ from year to year. One mountain whose summit is unrecognisable from when it was first climbed in 1956 is Manaslu in Nepal. Its summit has changed so much that modern mountaineers could almost be climbing a different mountain.

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Following the Everesters

Following the Everesters

This time last year I was lying in a tent on the north side of Everest, listening to a deafening wind pound against the nylon beside my head. Every spring a few hundred people seek to share my experience by trying to climb Everest, and thanks to the miracle of modern communications, it’s possible to watch from the sidelines.

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