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May 24, 2013
Historic number of ascents in Everest

by Hemanta Kafle Senior Sub editor/ Senior Reporter Annapurna Post
KATHMANDU, MAY 24, 2013 - The highest peak in the world, Mt Everest, has seen a historic number of successful climbers this year. According to the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, 467 climbers successfully reached the highest point on earth from Nepal or the south side . The spring expedition on Everest is yet to be over.

“The figure is the highest ever on the top of Everest,” spokesperson of the ministry Mohan Krishna Sapkota said. “There are a number of climbers still waiting for their turn in the Everest balcony.”

Every year, the ‘fair weather window’ on Everest opens for 4-5 days, while this year around, it has opened for more than a week now. Normally, there are two seasons for climbing the mountain—autumn and spring. However, climbing in the autumn season is difficult given the cold weather and snowfall.

The highest number of successful climbers in Everest was recorded in 2012 when 406 individuals made it to the top. Statistics at the ministry show that 385 individuals climbed the peak in 2008 when China issued a ban on climbing from the north face until May 10, 2008, in preparation for the Beijing Olympic torch run to Everest’s summit. As a result, on May 22, 2008, there was a record of 135 making it to the top of Everest on a single day. However, the record was broken on May 19 last year when 179 individuals reached the top on a single day due to a “traffic jam” caused by the small ‘weather window.’

Climbing Everest is relatively expensive as a permit ranges from US$10,000 to US$70,000, depending on the size of the team. In addition, climbing gear, oxygen and other equipment and food for a climber to reach the summit may cost in excess of US$10,000.

Year Ascents

2003 159

2004 165

2005 112

2006 193

2007 257

2008 385

2009 367

2010 364

2011 377

2012 406

(Source: Tourism Ministry)
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