April 22, 2014

Jon Krakauer: Sherpas, Death and Anger on Everest: Jon Krakauer, author of Into Thin Air, assesses the situation on Mount Everest after 12 sherpas were killed April 18 by an avalanche. A detail from the story: "The astounding number of climbers who now attempt to reach the summit on the limited number of days when the weather is favorable presents a new kind of hazard. A notorious photo shot by Ralf Dujmovits in May, 2012, showed more than a 150 people attached to a series of fixed ropes as they ascended the Lhotse Face toward the South Col of Everest, jammed together so tightly that they had to move in lockstep. The static weight of all these people and their gear was well over 30,000 pounds. If some mishap had occurred that caused more than a handful of the climbers to put their full weight on one of the ropes simultaneously, the shock to the anchors securing the ropes to the ice could easily have caused them to fail, resulting in the climbers falling two thousand or more feet to the base of the Lhotse Face. If such an accident should come to pass in the future (which isn't far-fetched), the death count for both members and sherpas would be horrific"

posted by rcade to extreme at 03:11 PM - 1 comment

Thanks for the link. Krakauer is an annoying writer, frequently wrong and an astonishingly transparent self publicist, but in this article he does highlight some major problems with the Everest industry.

posted by owlhouse at 01:40 AM on April 23, 2014

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.