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Mount Everest Climbing Season ends after deadly avalanche

Apr 28 2014, 1:47pm CDT | by , in News | Other Stuff

Mount Everest Climbing Season ends after deadly avalanche
Eric Thayer/Getty Images

Climbing season is cancelled

Each year people flock to Nepal in an effort to climb Mount Everest, the highest peak in the world. A recent avalanche at the mountain took a terrible toll killing 16 people. Out of the people who died on the mountain, only 13 of the bodies have been recovered. three remain entombed in ice on the mountain report National Geographic.

Other avalanches happened since the deadly avalanche that claimed those 16 lives, but no climbers were in the danger zone when the ice fell. Some blame the fear of avalanches as being the reason why the climbing season in Nepal was ended early.

"That's ridiculous," responds Adrian Ballinger, leader of the Alpenglow team, speaking from Kathmandu. "I would say only a very small percentage of teams canceled due to fear of increased danger in the icefall this season."

Avalanches in the Khumbu Icefall "are almost a daily occurrence every season," says Ballinger. "Small and large avalanches and collapses occur regularly. I have not seen myself, nor heard from any of my Sherpas, that there has been an increase in the frequency or severity of avalanches or icefalls this season—although obviously one slide had much greater than normal consequences."

"There were three primary reasons for ending the season," says Alan Arnette, an American Everest veteran who operates a much followed website about the world's tallest mountain (alanarnette.com): "Safety concerns around the icefall, respect for the Sherpas killed in the serac release, and the ongoing negotiations for improved insurance and compensation between the Sherpas and the Nepal government." Some indications are that religious Sherpas believe the mountain is taking revenge for injustices in the past. others have decided to end climbing season out of respect for those lost.

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