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Bad news from Everest

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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby simonov » Thu May 24, 2012 11:39 pm

Damien Gildea wrote:These people also have the funds to fail and try again next year, as they often do. It's the people who bank everything on a budget operator and 'need' to succeed, who can't afford to fail, that are a worry.

I hate to say this, and I had to re-think the same way for Denali, after climbing it years ago, but the 'problem' is either certain unguided - but incompetent and inexperienced - climbers or, in the case of Everest, 'climbers' on budget trips with no guide and minimal Sherpa support. Skimping on 'luxury' / security is fine, I do it voluntarily, but the people doing it nowadays are people who do not have the experience or skill to do it, and don't know, or care, when they are in over their heads.


Nick Heil implies something similar in Dark Summit.

BTW, the folks bleating on about "money money money" shouldn't forget that first in line for all that "money money money" is the government of Nepal, whose budget depends on Everest climbing permits.
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby klwagar » Fri May 25, 2012 1:59 am

http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/05/21 ... eath-zone/

This tells the story of the lady from Canada who had never climbed a mountain in her life before and hiked around Toronto for 6 months prior to the 100,000 dollar trip with a Nepalese company. Although it is incredibly sad for her family who took out a mortgage on their home to finance this trip it shows that now anyone can "climb" a big mountain if you have enough money.
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby DanTheMan » Fri May 25, 2012 8:00 pm

klwagar wrote:http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/05/21/canadian-climber-shriya-shah-among-three-dead-in-mount-everest-death-zone/

This tells the story of the lady from Canada who had never climbed a mountain in her life before and hiked around Toronto for 6 months prior to the 100,000 dollar trip with a Nepalese company. Although it is incredibly sad for her family who took out a mortgage on their home to finance this trip it shows that now anyone can "climb" a big mountain if you have enough money.


Read the story and saw this photo. Is it me, or do these boots look way too flexible or loose?
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby radson » Fri May 25, 2012 11:57 pm

Where does it say she spent $100,000?
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Hotoven » Sat May 26, 2012 4:15 am

DanTheMan wrote: Is it me, or do these boots look way too flexible or loose?
Image


Looks like a posed photo. She may have just slid on the boots for the sweet photo opportunity by camp (Still a bad idea).
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Hotoven » Sat May 26, 2012 4:21 am

The article says this:

The area above the last camp at the South Col is nicknamed the “death zone” because of the steep icy slope, treacherous conditions and low oxygen level.


From what I understand, the oxygen is the same amount as it is at sea level, its the lack of air pressure that would otherwise condenses the oxygen and make it easier to breath right?

I'm not high altitude climber so correct me if I'm wrong.
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Enkidu » Sat May 26, 2012 5:20 am

Hotoven wrote:The article says this:

The area above the last camp at the South Col is nicknamed the “death zone” because of the steep icy slope, treacherous conditions and low oxygen level.


From what I understand, the oxygen is the same amount as it is at sea level, its the lack of air pressure that would otherwise condenses the oxygen and make it easier to breath right?

I'm not high altitude climber so correct me if I'm wrong.


You are more or less correct. The air is still approximately 21% oxygen no matter the elevation. The lack of pressure causes the air to be less dense and as a result less air is inhaled with each breath. Instead of saying "condenses," compresses would be more accurate as condensed oxygen would technically be liquid oxygen.
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby klwagar » Sat May 26, 2012 3:36 pm

Everest was her mountain, after all. She grew up in its shadow in Kathmandu, Nepal, before moving to Mumbai, India, with her parents, and then to Toronto with her husband. The pair remortgaged their house to help raise about $100,000 for the expedition. They put off having children so she could take on Everest.

By Friday, she was almost there. At the final camp before the peak at 8,848 metres, the trim, dark-haired businesswoman, who once went on a 24-hour hunger strike to protest against Ontario’s high auto-insurance premiums, called several friends in the Toronto area to tell them how she was doing.

She was excited as she spoke about her plans to plant a Canadian flag atop Everest.

“She was not scared. She was not afraid of anything. She was full of joy, full of life,” friend Priya Ahuja recalled of their last conversation. “And she did it. And that’s the sad part. She did it and couldn’t come back.”

Globe and Mail May 21, 2012
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Damien Gildea » Sat May 26, 2012 11:21 pm

klwagar wrote:... who once went on a 24-hour hunger strike to protest against Ontario’s high auto-insurance premiums,


I hope that's either a misquote or an error in reporting. :shock:
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Hotoven » Sun May 27, 2012 4:03 am

Damien Gildea wrote:
klwagar wrote:... who once went on a 24-hour hunger strike to protest against Ontario’s high auto-insurance premiums,


I hope that's either a misquote or an error in reporting. :shock:


I admit, when I first read that I laughed at how random that statement was.
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby klwagar » Mon May 28, 2012 6:12 am

It seemed a bit weird but...I guess it sells news
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby ScottyP » Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:18 am

Much smaller scale but we had an alomost 30 minute wait to descend the summit ridge of Denalia this past Sunday due to crowds. Again, I realize it is a much smaller scale.. scott
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby Gafoto » Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:21 am

Hotoven wrote:
DanTheMan wrote: Is it me, or do these boots look way too flexible or loose?


Looks like a posed photo. She may have just slid on the boots for the sweet photo opportunity by camp (Still a bad idea).

Using a jumar is super sweet?
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Re: Bad news from Everest

Postby DukeJH » Fri Jun 01, 2012 9:42 pm

Damien Gildea wrote:I've never been a client on a guided expedition, so normally I'm strongly - some would say too strongly - in favour of going unguided and anti-masscommercial guiding. Just to be clear - I believe it's better to start small, build your skill, get your own experience, don't buy short-cuts and go as high, or as hard, as you can under your own steam. Don't endanger others and truly own your successes. ...they should hire the best guide service they can.


OK. I'll bite. I have been a client on a guided expedition, two in fact. And I agree with your statements above (although trimmed a bit).

My first was a glacier mountaineering course in the North Cascades with Alpine Ascents. I lived in Texas and had no easy way to get into mountains with glaciers to learn these skills. The most time and cost effective way was to sign on with a service and take this class. The team was an interesting mix including a wanna be seven summits climber (who didn't make it two hours into the approach), to a girl taking the class so she could climb with her boyfriend, to me, an experienced hiker, backpacker and rock climbing instructor. Although it was cool to summit a mountain, the goal was to learn the skills so I could apply them to future climbs.

My second was Mexican Volcanoes with Sierra Mountaineering. Ixta and Orizaba seemed to be the next steps in my climbing career and having a guide service handle the majority of the logistics allowed me to focus on my training and my other day to day responsibilities. I had no doubt that I was ready to make the climbs, with or without a guide. The guide provides a factor of safety.

I plan to go to East Africa in January and February with Sierra Mountaineering to climb Mt. Kenya and Kilimanjaro. SMI is requiring me (and my brother) to go on a multi-pitch rock climb in the Sierra with a senior guide to demonstrate our abilities. This is good.

I've also led expeditions (I use the term loosely) of Boy Scouts of up to 10 days in remote areas of Colorado, New Mexico and into Switzerland, including hikes to over 14,000' and glacier climbs, so I understand the responsibility a guide service (or individual) should feel toward the safety of their team.

Based on my experiences, I've come to the following conclusions:

1. If a climber elects to utilize a guide service, pick the best service out there that will deliver the services you need. If you want only a permit and logistics support, don't expect help on the hill.
2. A guide service should vet their clientele to ensure that clients are qualified and capable of safely performing on the hill. I wouldn't hold it against anyone if they said I wasn't qualified to climb K2; I know I'm not.
3. Climbers should start small, build their skill, get experience, but there is nothing wrong with getting the assistance of a reputable guide service to learn the required skills. This is tough when you love mountains but aren't lucky enough to live near mountains.
4. Climbers and guides should understand that climbing popular peaks will expose you to more objective hazard due to the larger populations on these mountains. See the picture above and read the stories of 1996 at the Hillary Step.

Reputable guide services have their place in the economy of the outdoors if climbers can understand their own limitations and the responsibilities of the guide.
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