Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Sad News From Everest

An American has fallen to his death. He fell in the Khumbu Icefall, which is an area of shifting ice blocks that is usually roped out pretty well in advance of the climbing season. The fall came while he was descending, which is actually fairly typical, because on the way down climbers tend to relax after having reached their goal and are also becoming fatigued. I'm curious as to whether he had summited. A lot of travel is done through the Khumbu at the beginning of an expedition while the climbers are acclimatizing, so his fall could have come during one of those periods. If he had summited, however, this would be an especially poignant story, because by reaching the Khumbu on the way back would have meant that he had completed nearly his entire climb. RIP.


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