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Mount Everest

Everest

Everest
Mt. Everest is the darker mountain in the background

No other mountain in the world can claim that it has reached the popularity of Mount Everest. Everest has infiltrated its way into pop culture and into the hearts of many.  It is not just the subject of movies, documentaries, books, or songs. It is a destination for people to challenge themselves under adverse conditions. This article dives into Everest. I hope you enjoy it.

Sagarmatha

Everest
Nuptse, Everest (behind the cloud), Lhotse, Ama Dablam

Mount Everest is known in Nepali as Sagarmatha. It is the tallest mountain in the world, reaching a peak of 29,029 feet above sea level. Sagarmatha is in the Sagarmatha National Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2013, 36,750 people visited Sagarmatha National Park. Of the 36,750 people, most of them visited the park in the Fall (September through November).

Popular destinations in Sagarmatha National Park

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Everest base camp

Most people that enter the Sagarmatha National Park are trekking to Everest Base Camp. The second most popular destination is Namche Bazaar. Another major tourist attraction is Gokyo Lakes, which is on the way to Everest Base Camp. Lukla is another popular destination.

People in Sagarmatha National Park

Sherpa, Tamang, and Sunwar are the primary ethnic groups of the Sagarmatha area. There are also other indigenous groups, which include Bhote, Jirel, and Thami. However, I do not have any information on the last three groups.

Sunwar

Sunwar people are from eastern Nepal. They primary follow animism, which is similar to shamanism. There are 52 different subgroups or clans of Sunwar people. Sunwar means gold.

Sherpa

Sherpas are one of the most famous groups of Nepal, receiving notoriety for their ability to live in high altitudes. They are hired to carry equipment for people who attempt to summit Mount Everest. The word Sherpa means Eastern People, which describes where they live and where they come from. Sherpa people speak a dialect of Tibetan. There are many sub-groups or clans of Sherpa people.

Tamang

The Tamang are an indigenous group of people in the north east area of Nepal. Their name means horse trader in Tibetan. Tamangs are divided into several subgroups or clans. They have their own language that is similar to Tibetan-Bhurmese like the group Gurung. Most Tamangs follow Buddhism.

Mount Everest mountaineering

Tenzing Norgay and Edmound Hillary are the first recorded people to summit Everest. They did so in 1953; however, they are probably not the first people to summit the mountain. I believe the first-person summit Mount Everest was a native to the area.

George Mallory and Andrew Irvine may have been the first non-native people to summit Everest in 1924. They were attempting to summit Mount Everest from the north side (They probably took a car to get to base camp (jk)). They were last seen at elevation, but inclement weather developed and prevented any future sightings. Mallory’s body was found 2,274 feet below the summit in 1999.

Every year there are around 200 to 375 permits issued by Nepal to summit Everest. Each permit costs $11,000. On average 4.3 people die trying to summit Everest for every 100 people who summit. About 16 people die every year climbing Everest.

Mountaineering equipment

  • Rope (200 feet long and 9 to 10.5mm thick)
  • Helmet
  • Harness
  • Boots
  • Crampons
  • Belay/rappel device
  • Pully
  • Carabiners (locking and non-locking)
  • Head lamp
  • Avalanche transceiver
  • Ice axe
  • Supplemental oxygen

Trash on Mount Everest

Everest
Trash on Mount Everest

Attempting to summit Mount Everest is an exhausting task. The addition of any gear can make it exponentially more difficult. That is why, many of the people who have climbed Everest did so at the mountain’s peril.

Many people will litter their used materials on the mountain. This created a degraded and aesthetically eroded environment for future climbers. Fortunately, restoration efforts are underway to clear away some of the debris. Some mountaineering companies will also remove the human waste from the mountain.

Why Everest?

Everybody has their own reason for climbing Mount Everest. Some people do it because they can, and other do it to honor the forefathers of mountaineering. I would say a lot of people do it for the prestige and honor they get from it. I known a lot of people go to Nepal looking for something. Some of them try to find it on the mountain, when its inside them the whole time.

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