Thursday, 19 July, 2018

Nepal's Kami Rita Sherpa climbs Mt Everest for 22nd time

Kami Rita Sherpa File – This image shows Kami Rita Sherpa from Thame village of Solukhumbu district. Sherpa scaled Mt Everest for the 22nd time
Ellis Copeland | 16 May, 2018, 22:18

A veteran Sherpa guide scaled Mount Everest on Wednesday for the 22nd time, setting a record for the most climbs of the world's highest mountain, while a female Sherpa made it to the summit for the ninth time, shattering her own record for the most climbs by a woman. Phurba Tashi, 47, retired from high-altitude climbing in 2013 but still works at Everest's base camp, helping organise expeditions.

Lakpa Sherpa, 44, the world's most successful female Everest climber, also made her ninth climb to the top of the mountain on Wednesday - breaking her own record set a year ago.

The 48-year-old reached the 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) summit via the Southeast Ridge route, accompanied by 13 other climbers including his clients, Tourism Department official Gyanendra Shrestha said from the base camp.

"He has set the world record", said Mingma Sherpa, chairman of the Seven Summit Treks company that employs Kami.

He made his first ascent of the Everest in 1994 when he was 24 years old.

Kami Rita apparently hopes to reach 25 times before retiring.

The daughter of a yak herder, Ms Lhakpa worked as a porter and kitchen hand on trekking and mountaineering expeditions, before becoming a climber herself.

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She first climbed Everest from South Col in 2000 and since has climbed from the North Col eight times.

"I keep going to encourage other Nepali women to climb", the 44-year-old told AFP last month.

The mountain is climbed taking advantage of narrow weather windows between mid- to late May, after weeks of acclimatization at lower altitudes.

But the mountain is also highlighting its risks.

"They are searching for him on the way down", he said of the team that has just summited.

"Multiple teams using the same device have experienced similar oxygen system failures".

Lhakpa stood at the top of Everest early on Wednesday too.

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