Climbing Mount Everest
Everyone is familiar with the tallest peak in the world, Mount Everest. And the mountaineer from all around the world has set their eyes on this mightiest peak. The Everest expedition is a dream for many climbers. However, climbing Mount Everest at an elevation of 8848.86m is not an easy adventure. There is the various difficulty with the Mount Everest Expedition.
With an elevation of 8848.86m, Mount Everest is regarded as the earth’s tallest mountain peak. So Climbing Mount Everest is the dream of every adventurer. The world’s famous peak Everest is located in the Mahalangur Himal sub-range of the Himalayas.
The word “Himalaya” is derived from the Sanskrit word that means home of snow. It is situated on the borderline that runs across the peak of the mountain with its half territory in Nepal and half in Tibet, an autonomous region of China. The Nepalese or Sanskrit name for Everest is Sagarmatha whereas its Tibetian name is Chomolungma. Mount Everest is the holy place for the Tibetian as the Tibetan name” Chomolungma” symbolizes “Peak of Heaven ”. On the other hand, the Sanskrit name for the Everest Sagarmatha means “Goddess Mother of the world”. It is located in the Mahalangur range of the Tibetian Plateau and In Nepal, it lies in the Sagarmatha National Park in the Solukhumbu district.
Everest is at the highest elevation from sea level but its summit is not far from the earth’s center. There are 17 routes for the Mount Everest Expedition but the climber usually prefers two routes from Nepal and Tibet. Nepal side is the southern ridge and the Tibet side is the northern ridge. The very first line of the Mount Everest Expedition was created by Sir Edmund Hillary from New Zealand and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa from Nepal in 1953. On the other hand, George Mallory created the line from the Tibetan side but disappeared while climbing Mount Everest in 1924.
Later, the Chinese team 1960 reached the summit. Many experienced mountaineers and climbers state that expedition is difficult from both routes. This also clears the difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition. From the Nepal side, one must trek through the perilous Khumbu Icefall. However, one can drive a jeep up to the basecamp from the Tibetan side.
Climbing Mount Everest
The summit to the highest peak has been a lifelong dream for many mountaineers. They want to have that once-a-lifetime experience of Climbing Mount Everest. There were nearly 4000 attempts to the summit but the success rate was only 660. However, 142 even sacrificed their lives while climbing Mount Everest. Every year, numbers of people make their attempts to the Mount Everest Expedition but less than a half can reach the top. Just to get to the top, to feel nature, and to thrive in a thrilling adventure, mountaineers from all over the world have set their eyes on Everest. Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa were the very first people to reach Everest, hence many mountaineers get inspired by them. The extreme difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition adds another sort of adventure to the mountaineers.
Setting an eye to the peak that is at the highest elevation on the Earth’s surface is an extreme Adventure. The Mount Everest Expedition is not easy. There are various difficulties of the Mount Everest Expedition such as the Khumbu icefall on the Nepal side, which is also popular as a “suicide passage”. Even extreme mountaineers and climbers need to be careful in this region. Besides, the climbers may face problems regarding altitude sickness, and steep inclines. As the air becomes thinner with the rise in altitude. People may have difficulties in breathing because of the thin air.
To overcome such difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition you need to spend more time adapting to the environment of the Himalayas. Proper acclimatization ensures your level of adapting to the weather and extreme climatic condition in the Himalayan region. The climate of Everest or any other Himalayan region is extreme. Worst weather can hit anytime on Everest.
The difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition starts at Death Zone at 8000m above sea level. The body loses its energy because of extreme temperature and thin air. Even the highly experienced climbers may face impaired judgments, heart attacks, or any other difficulties So, one needs to be more careful regarding the weather and climate in the Everest region. To challenge the extreme level of difficulty, one must train with mountaineering types of equipment such as fixed ropes, crampons, carabiners, ascenders, jumar, etc. Also, they must train to get used to low temperatures, and low oxygen.
People choose the attempts from two major routes for climbing Mount Everest, either Nepal or from Tibet.
The successful climbers who have experienced the rough trails of Everest claimed that both sides have comparable difficulties, as well as extreme Challenges. No matter which routes you take, the journey is likely to be difficult at some point where there is a life threat to the mountaineers. Either because of the extreme snowfall, the harsh weather, or the very thin layer of Air many people descend downwards without reaching the top.
The difficulty of Mount Everest Expedition
Mount Everest expedition is one of the thrilling yet most exciting journeys in the Himalayas for those who are seeking some extreme adventure. Since 1953 when humans set their foot on the highest peak, many climbers have attempted to achieve the same goal. Some of them succeed in doing so whereas others could not cope with the harsh weather and their physical ability. Besides, there are other various difficulties of the Mount Everest Expedition and they are:
Low Level Of Oxygen
At an elevation of 8848.86m high, Everest is the world’s highest peak. The higher the altitude, the lower the oxygen is. So, at Everest which is at the highest elevation, the level of oxygen is extremely low. A normal human being finds it difficult to live at that level of oxygen. Similarly, the elevation above 8000m is considered the Death Zone, where the air is thin. Because of the Thin layer of oxygen one may feel weak despite carrying the artificial oxygen. Therefore the oxygen level at Everest makes it harder while Climb Mount Everest.
The process of becoming adapted to a new climate or new condition is acclimatization. As the climate in the Himalayan region is extremely cold so before the expedition to Everest, one must learn to acclimatize. Walking slowly and not rushing for the expedition is beneficial to tackling altitude sickness. Lack of acclimatization can create difficulties in your journey. Besides, drinking water during the trek will overcome dehydration. However, this may seem like a small case but it helps you with the expedition. Various acclimatization techniques can overcome altitude sickness.
One of the major difficulties of the Mount Everest Expedition is the high altitude sickness is altitude sickness. And at the highest elevation like Everest, it is one of the major difficulties that climbers are facing. The low air pressure and the decrease in the amount of oxygen with the increase in height cause altitude sickness
Masses of snow, ice, and rocks can fall rapidly on Everest anytime. Falling any of these articles in a larger quantity can be a risk for the climbers. They have to descend downwards as soon as possible in case of such an Avalanche. So, it is one of the major difficulties in the Everest Expeditions. There is some particular area on Everest where the occurrence of Avalanche is high. The places such as North Col, South Col, and Khumbu Icefall have higher chances of an avalanche. You cannot completely control the flow but you can be cautious and try to cross these areas early in the morning before the sun melts the snow.
The number of deaths that occur on Everest is because of falls. Falls are highly dangerous when climbing the high ridges in higher camps. One must be very careful about stepping on covered ice on the dark grounds. You can be extra careful by double-checking the knots, and carabiners, and maintaining footwork.
The cracks that appear in glacial ice and can even swallow climbers are crevasses. Khumbu icefalls and western Cwm are the areas with high crevasses. Therefore, a slight carelessness in this highly sensitive area may take the life of the climbers. So, the expedition team ties the ropes through which they can drag anyone in case of a fall to cross these crevasses. So crevasses also act as a difficult factor while climbing Mount Everest.
Cost of Climbing Mount Everest?
The average cost of the Mount Everest Expedition is going up once again in 2021. Mostly, there are 3 types of trekkers. The commercial one, who fully pay for their trek themselves, the manual trailers, who try to conquer the mountain on their own without any guides, and the government-funded trailers, which are entirely funded by the government from the training camp to the summit. So, funds for the summit of Everest differ accordingly. So looking at the scale, the pay ranges between $25000 and $75000 or sometimes even to $100000 per person.
There are some factors added up in the cost.
For the expedition to Mount Everest, you can either fly to Tibet or Nepal. Choosing your journey from Tibet you need to fly to Lhasa and drive to basecamp which costs additional charges. From the southern ridge, Nepal you need to fly to Kathmandu and again fly to Lukla. So, the flights and jeep added up the cost of your Everest expedition
You need permits to climb Everest from both countries. You can receive permits from both Nepal and Tibet. The permit costs you around 11,000$ in Nepal. You can add evacuation costs, but it is totally up to you. The evacuation costs include the service of evacuation in case of emergency.
The gears are the must-have equipment during your expeditions which will ensure your safe trek up to the peak. However, it is nearly impossible to trek without it to a deadly place like Everest.
The Nepali government implemented a new rule that every foreign trekker must have a local guide before the Everest expedition. Not abiding by the rule can restrict them from climbing Everest for the next 5 years. Therefore, a guide with porter and yaks will charge you another 6000$ per person.
Climbing Routes to Mount Everest Expedition
There are about 20 different climbing routes to Everest but the majority of people climb via Tibet, the northern ridge, or Nepal, the southern ridge. A total of 98% of people choose these routes for climbing Mount Everest as all the other routes are not commercially guided for them. Though the difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition is equal for each route. However, people are adventurous and they love exploring new things. The same goes for the climbing routes to Everest. Almost all the other routes besides Nepal and Tibet have been climbed as the new generation of climbers find a way for the new trails. All the 20 routes have been attempted at least once by some climbers except for the two, the direct route up the East Face and the East Ridge. Both of the routes are dangerous and have a high chance of avalanches.
From South Col Routes via Nepal, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa were the first to climb Mount Everest. The south col routes had only been attempted twice by the Swiss team. The team could only reach an elevation of 8500m. Tenzing Norgay was with the Swiss team. At night there is deep murmuring cracking sounds beneath the tents. The journey to climbing Mount Everest starts with the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla and a trek through the Khumbu to Base camp. Taking several days to acclimatize, you get opportunities to explore the cultural as well as religious life of Everest. After that, the projected team arrives at the base camp, and climbers will be ready with their gears and extra clothing.
Then, climbers can begin their journey through the Khumbu Icefall, up the western CWM, the Lhotse face, the South Col, the south summit the Hillary step to the summit. The team created four camps through these routes.
Camp 1, Valley of Silence (6100m-6400m)
The camp lies at an elevation above 6100m-6400m with a flat area of endless snow. At night there is deep murmuring cracking sounds beneath our tents. We will set up our camp here and make sure to set camp away from tiny cracks that may lead to large crevasses. Crevasses lay hidden everywhere under the snow so climb this area clipped to the fixed rope.
Camp 2 (6400m)
After the silent valley, you will reach a rocky patch at the foot of the Lhotse wall at an elevation of 6400m. This camp provides you with a stunning view of the clouds rolling in from the lower range to the upper Himalayas. This is the last place to prepare a meal as we will be surviving on instants only. It avalanches once in a while so climbing too close to Everest’s face is risky.
Camp 3, Lhotse wall (6800m-8000m)
At an elevation from 6800m-8000m, the climb will either be easy or hard depending upon the weather. Blocks of ice fall behind the climbers. After Camp 3, you will cross the wall towards the yellow band and black turtle, a rocky section on the wall, with tangles of old and new ropes.
Camp 4, the Death Zone (8000m)
At camp 4, you feel like being at the edge of the peak as you can look down the Tibetian plateau with its vast brown plains, glaciers, and other alpine peaks-Kanchenjunga, Lhotse, Makalu, etc. this is where the final part of the adventure begins. A little higher and you will reach the top of the peak. you are in the death zone and the risk of life is very high here for the next 48 hours.
The Northeast Ridge Route
This route is from the north side of the mountain in Tibet for climbing Mount Everest. The trip starts in Lhasa, Tibet, and drives across the Tibetan plateau to the north base camp in Tibet at an elevation of 5200m. Stopping at Shigatse and new Tingri, the drive takes 3 days to reach base camp. The team created 3 primitive camps on the Northeast Ridge Routes.
The first camp is established at the North Pole at 7000m whereas the second camp is at 7800m on the rocky ridge. Camp 3 is above 8000m at an elevation of 8300m which is on a broad, steep, rocky face below the northeast ridge. The slope is steep and mostly devoid of snow, making it harder to pile rocks to create a level platform the full size of a tent. So the level of difficulty of the Mount Everest Expedition is also high from this side.
Facts About Everest
The mighty peak of Mount Everest has recently gained the attention of everyone with its newly measured official height of 8848.86m. However, Everest was just 8848m but the recent measurement shows that the height was increased by 0.86m. So, like this, there are several other facts about Everest and they are:
- Mount Everest is highest above the sea level but Hawaii’s Mauna Kea is the tallest mountain base-to peak
- It rises 40cm per century
- There are around 7000 peaks on Everest
- The death zone on Everest is above 8000m
- It almost takes 10 weeks to reach the summit
- The tallest mountain in the world
- Around 4000 attempts to the summit of the Everest
- The number of successful attempts to the summit is 660
- The death rate at the Everest summit is 142
- The newly measured Height of Everest is 8848.86m
- Countries visible from the summit: Nepal, Tibet, and India
- The Tibetan name for Everest is Chomolungma Meaning “ Peak of Heaven”
- Nepalese name for Everest is Sagarmatha means “ Goddess Mother of the world”
- The Everest is named for George Everest, a British surveyor- General of India.
- Everest may be approximately 60 million years old
- Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first to reach the summit in 1953.
- Eleven people died during spring expeditions in 1996.
Gears Required for Climbing Mount Everest
To an extreme place like Mount Everest, one must have proper gears and equipment. Choosing the gears carefully and not skimping on quality can make your Mount Everest Expedition comfortable and risk-free. Here is the list of the gears you need while Climbing Mount Everest.
Climbing Mount Everest is not an average climb so you need something where your toes have the space to move freely or prevent you from getting frostbite. Choose your shoes accordingly as the climb to Everest is steep, and snowy, and almost every climber uses Italian OneSport shoes today.
There are many brands of crampons but remember that ice climbing differs from glacier crampons. Crampons are traction device that is attached to footwear to improve mobility on snow and Ice during climbing. Crampons are also used while traveling on snow and ice, crossing glaciers, snowfields, and icefields.
The Himalayan ranger is much colder than you think. So you will need multi-layer clothing for climbing Mount Everest as the temperature changes dramatically. Carry a light-weight down jacket all the time, wear water-resistant gloves, and good pairs of down mittens higher up. Wear a heavy down suit from camp 2 to the summit. Down Suits from both North face and Mountain hardware, hood with oxygen masks covering your face, and plenty of socks are essentials.
Use a face mask for protection against Khumbu-cough. Use your mask from Gorak Shep. It will help you protect from any disease spreading in the colder area.
A harness is a set of straps and fittings that climbers use while summiting to ascend or descend. Tie your harness about half a meter of line with carabine for the fixed ropes
It is a tool used by a mountaineer in both ascends and descends of routes with ice walls. You need an ax on your pack the most while ascending the mountain
A 15m glacier rope is another needed piece of equipment during your summit. We need ropes in case of rescue or crossing unsafe places. Similarly, ropes are used in places of missing ladders. It is also used in tying each other if there are no fixed ropes in dangerous conditions.
Tents and Sleeping Bags
Tents and sleeping bags are a must for the nighttime on Everest. Get a big, high-quality tent for all of the four camps as well as Base camps. Sleeping bags need to be down with at least 1000 grams of filling. You need at least 3 sleeping bags, one of them can be lighter for base camp.
Maps and Compass
The Washburn map and a small compass cab secure you with the destination.