We know that climbers and Sherpas have been flown out of Everest Base Camp with COVID-19, but we don’t know the extent of the outbreak. All climbers and operators need to take a hard look at 2021 and decide if the positives of their impact outweigh the negatives.Read more
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?Read more
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.Read more
It’s the Everest silly announcement season again
It was a slow news week over the Christmas period, and the mainstream media fell for the Everest silly announcement hoax for the umpteenth time. This particular stunt happens roughly once a year, and the process is described here.Read more
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.Read more
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.Read more
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.Read more
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?Read more
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?Read more
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.Read more