Everest 2013 | End of Spring Climbing Season

Note: This post is a general wrap up of this climbing season. More updated version of summits/no summits is being (will be) compiled here.

Monsoon, the season of heavy precipitation, is approaching Himalayas and within few days climbing in the region would become impossible. The weather window right before monsoon allowed more than 600 individuals to reach the summit of Everest, while nine mountaineers lost their lives during this season. Unfortunately the daring climbs of the season also ended at sad notes. Many 'Firsts' can be called as highlights of the season, particularly those from female climbers.

Beyond Norms
This year, several valiant climbers wanted to do something different than merely reaching the highest summit in the world but unluckily none of them could execute their plans.

Russians Gleb Sokolov and Alexander Kirikov had to dismiss their East Face new line in alpine style attempt before the start of season due to financial issues.

Ueli Steck and Simone Moro wanted to climb a different route, without oxygen but C2 brawl thwarted their expedition.

The end of Alexey Bolotov and Denis Urubko’s SW Face alpine style, new route expedition was even more tragic, when former passed away at the start of new route climb.

Four sherpas and five climbers lost their lives on Everest this season.
1) Icefall doctor Mingmar Sherpa (45) died early in the season because of fall into a crevasse.
2) DaRita Sherpa (37) died because of cardiac or cerebral event at C3 on May 5.
3) Russian climber Sergey Ponomarev died of cardiac arrest near North ABC.
4) 25 years old Lobsang Sherpa died above C3, because of a fatal fall while returning from C4.
5) Russian Alexey Bolotov died at 5600m due to a fall caused by broken rope.
6) On 16th May, Namgyal Sherpa died high up on Everest North. He was returning from his 10th summit.
7) Climber Mohammed Hossain from Bangladesh died in his South Col tent due to altitude related problems.
8) Korean Seong-Ho Suh (34) died after summiting Everest, his twelfth eight-thousander without oxygen.
9) A Japanese climber died on North Side while descending from high camps. Name of climber is not known yet. {Although this death appeared in certain dispatches from the mountain, Ms Hawley's list does not include it in her season's report.}

Female Firsts
Raha Moharrak (Saudi Arabia), Samina Baig (Pakistan), Edita Nichols (Lithuania) and Paulina Aulestia Enriquez (Ecuador) became first females from their countries to conquer Everest when they reached the summit this year. (Update-3/6/13) Maria da Conceição was also the first Portuguese woman to reach the summit of Everest.

Other Notable Climbers

British climber Kenton Cool along with Dorje Gylgen summited Nuptse on 18th May, Everest on 19th and Lhotse on 20th, in one climb. Cool is now the first person to conquer all three peaks in Everest Horseshoe without returning to BC. (In an interview with Outside Magazine, Kenton Cool said that Dorje Gylgen didn't climb Nuptse).

On 20th May, Kim Chang-Ho became the first Korean to climb Everest without supplemental oxygen and also first Korean to complete 14x8000ers without oxygen. He is also the quickest to conquer all 8000m peaks, just ahead of Jerzy Kukuczka.

David Liano Gonzalez achieved the honor of being first person to summit Everest from both sides in one season (From South on 11th May and North on 19th)

Ecuadorian climber Santiago Quintero was amongst those few climbers who attempted Everest South without supplemental oxygen, this year. He summited on 21st May. Earlier this season, Santiago reached Shishapangma Summit (8027m) on 30th April.

80 years old Japanese Yuichiro Miura gained the title of oldest person to summit Everest on 23rd May. But 81 years old Min Bahadur Sherchan is also attempting to regain the distinction. On 24th May, Bahadur wrote on his Facebook page, "Now I have enough acclimatization at base-camp. My health is ok now & if weather favor, I will be moving forward within this week."
As per recent report from Alan Arnette, Bahadur is back in Kathmandu. He has to call his attempt over because of delay in funding from Nepalese Government.

Spanish climber Carlos Pauner reached the summit on May but had to use supplemental during summit push. It was his 14th 8000er, although there are doubts about his Shishapangma summit. Carlos says, he will redo the Shishapangma to eradicate the question marks.

Oswaldo Freire, Esteban Mena and Rafael Caceres of Somos Ecuador summited on May 25, without supplemental oxygen while expedition leader Ivan Vallejo and lady climber Carla Perez had to turn back slightly short of summit. It was first instance of an all Ecuadorian team reaching summit.

Silvio Mondinelli reached the top of Everest with his friend Aldo Garioni, ‘almost’ without O2. He says, “When arrived at 8500 meters, I felt my feet getting cold. I thought: 'I'm on oxygen; they all used to say that it (oxygen) is miraculous and yet it did not seem much to me. Then I checked: the dispenser was broken. I was bringing back the full tanks from 7000 meters.” His sherpa repaired the dispenser and Silvio continued the climb using oxygen.

No Summits
Ecuadorian Patricio Tisalema had to abort his summit push at around 8300m, to assist rescue of Dawa sherpa. The sherpa was supporting Patricio's "On top of Everest North in one Day" climb.

Chad Kellogg, the speed climber on south side, also had to abort his push above South Col due to strong winds.

Rupert Hauer climbed Shishapangma using ‘fair means’, earlier this year. He was attempting Everest from North side, without oxygen or support. During his summit push on 20th May, he encountered an American suffering from blindness at an altitude of around 8700m. He abandoned his climb and assisted the rescue of sick climber. “The weather was worthy of a successful summit attempt, but a human life is more important.”, Rupert seems contented with his decision.

60th Anniversary
This year 29th May marks the 60th Anniversary of first ascent of Mount Everest. The British expedition of 1953 led by John Hunt, was historically fifteenth attempt to summit Everest, fourth from Nepal side. New Zealander Edmund Hillary and Nepali Tenzing Norgay reached the summit at around 1130hrs local time. Many events are planned to celebrate the ‘Diamond Jubilee’ of Everest’s first climb.

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This story also appeared at Explorers Web.
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