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South African climber let off pemit fine + more deaths on Everest. See here for our rolling blog of news on the Everest climbing season... NEW & UPDATED

Saturday 27th May
South African climber let off permit fine

Ryan Davy was fined $22,000 by the Nepalese authorities after trying to climb Mount Everest without a permit.

He has now been told he can go home and has been banned from climbing in Nepal for 10 years.

He was found hiding in a cave as we reported lower down this article on 10th May.

The 43-year old South African had no climbing experience and said he could not afford the cost of the permit.

Foreigners have to pay the Nepal government £8,500 for permission to climb the 8,848m peak.

He was planning on making a film and writing a book about his experience.

He said that he taught himself to climb by reading books and watching videos on You Tube.

He is now considering an attempt on Everest next year from the Tibet.

And this time he says he will have all the correct paperwork.

Ryan DavyRyan Davy


Wednesday 24th May
Further Fatalities on Everest

The most recent fatalities bring the death total to 10.

According to The Himalayan Times four people, including a  woman mountaineer, were found dead in their tent at a high altitude camp on Tuesday.

They are said to be two Nepalis and two foreigners.

Sherpa climbers found the bodies while they were at Camp 4 to recover the body of a Slovak solo mountainer, Vladimir Strba,  who was one of four climbers to die on Sunday. 

The others who died this week are an American climber, Roland Yearwood, who is reported to have suffered altitude sickness near the South Col, 27-year-old Ravi Kumar from India, and 54-year-old Australian Francesco Enrico Marchetti, who was descending on the Tibetan side of Everest from the North Col. 

Earlier this month an 85-year-old former British Gurkha, Min Bahadur Sherchan, died at Base Camp of a suspected heart attack.

He was aiming to become the oldest person to climb Everest.  

In April the famous Swiss climber Ueli Steck died while acclimatising for an a summit attempt.
Tuesday 23rd May
Famous Feature of Everest Gone

The Hillary Step, a chunk of rock which was the last challenge before reaching the summit has collapsed.

The British mountaineer, Tim Mosedale, announced the news on Facebook after reaching the top of Mount Everest on 16th May.

He described the collapse as "definitive" and said it was the end of an era.

However, the Nepal Tourism Ministry says it is not yet proved.

The Hillary Step - a near vertical 12 metre outcrop on the mountain's southeast ridge  - was named after the first man to scale Everest, Sir Edmund Hillary.

"It was mooted last year but we weren't sure for certain because of the amount of snow cover. "This year, however, its definitive," Tim Mosedale wrote on Facebook.  

Answering a query about whether it had really collapsed or just crumbled, he said:  "Looks like it's pretty much completely gone. There's debris left behind but I wouldn't want to be anywhere near it. Thankfully there's a snow ridge to the right which we ascended instead". 

It's thought that the Hillary Step was probably damaged in the devastating earthquake that struck Nepal in 2015.

Photos taken a year ago appeared to show that it had changed shape but the snow made it hard to be sure.

"It is associated with the history of Everest, and it is a great shame a piece of mountaineering folklore has disappeared," Mr Mosedale said in an interview with the BBC.

Hillary Step in 2009The Hillary Step in 2009 - photo NATAS Singapore Women's Everest Team

The Hillary Step has collapsedThe Hillary Step is no more - photo Tim Mosedale

You can read more on the BBC website.

And for a fascinating insight into what it feels like to stand on the top of the world in a terrifying storm, read PlanetSKI reporter Squash Falconer's account of her Everest climb.

21st May
Ski mountaineering hero conquers Everest in "speed climb".

PlanetSKI's Skimo Geek, Catie Friend, is even more in awe of him than she previously thought possible! 

On the 21st May at midnight, Kilian Jornet, one of ski mountaineering's best known athletes, reached the summit of Everest (8,484 m) in an epic push straight from Base Camp (5,100 m) in 26 hours.

This takes most expeditions four days.

He did it without the use of supplemental oxygen or fixed ropes. 

He was alone after 8,020m, when his cameraman, Sébastien Montaz-Rosset, left him as planned.  

He was hoping to return to Base Camp, but stomach problems that plagued him from 7,700m upwards, meant he decided to finish his challenge at Advanced Base Camp (6,400m), where is still recovering from this super human effort. 

Known as the "extra-terrestrial", Jornet was brought up in a mountain hut in Spain. 

His love of the mountains is evident in everything he does.

He is a former Ski Mountaineering World Champion, four time winner of the Pierra Menta, winner of the Patrouilles des Glaciers and, as a summer trail runner, the winner of the world famous Ultra-Trail de Mont Blanc (UTMB), setting the World Record at the age of 20.

Climbing Everest and the setting of the "Fastest Known Time" is the culmination of a personal project he set himself in 2013, called Summits of my Life, in which he has attempted to set records for ascent and descent of some of the world's tallest mountains. 

Having met and interviewed him several times, PlanetSKI reporter Catie Friend, said " I can also attest to the fact that he is extremely humble and a very nice man". 

Yours truly interviewing Kilian JornetCatie Friend interviewing Kilian Jornet

Many congratulations from us all at PlanetSKI.

Kilian JornetKilian Jornet

20th May
Mollie Hughes

The 26-year-old had already climbed the mountain from its south side in 2012.

She has now done it again, this time from the north side that starts in Tibet and is generally considered a more difficult route.

Mollie HughesMollie Hughes

 Mollie Hughes sporting her BBC Blue Peter Badge on Mt Everest Mollie Hughes sporting her BBC Blue Peter Badge on Mt Everest

"I am elated, exhausted and know I still have the hardest part to do - the long and difficult descent to base camp," she said from the summit.

"The climbing has been really, really hard but our mental and physical strength got us up here. I can confirm that the north side is definitely more difficult than the south side!" she added.

Mollie Hughes on Everest:
15th May
British Army Gurkhas

Meanwhile, three British Army Gurkhas have reached the summit of Everest, two years after their first attempt was halted when an earthquake caused devastating avalanches on the mountain.

And theirs is not the only British success.
The soldiers were the first climbers to reach the top of the world's highest peak from the south side this season, as strong winds, fresh snow and bitter cold has hampered other attempts.

The news came as a 26-year-old woman from Edinburgh became the youngest Briton to climb Everest from both the south and the north side.

Another British climber and expedition leader, Kenton Cool, has abandoned his attempt at a 13th summit and left Everest, saying family is more important.

Gurkha Expedition

The three soldiers are the first serving Gurkhas to reach the summit of Mount Everest. 

They were in a group which got to the top 15th May.

The following morning 10 more of the Gurkha Everest Expedition team made the summit.

Gurkha Everest Expedition 2017At the summit - photo Gurkha Everest Expedition

In a comment on the British Army website the deputy expedition leader Major Andrew Todd said: "This is a fantastic achievement for the Brigade of Gurkhas, after our attempt in 2015 was called off due to the avalanches from the earthquake and our team then turned to assist the humanitarian aid that was required in the area.

"We are ecstatic about this success. It is another example of how the British Army strives to achieve excellence. We are delighted to have worked with the Sherpas to fix the ropes to the summit and to be the first team to summit this year - a great collaboration between Nepalis, working together to get the job done."

Gurkha Everest ExpeditionAt the top - photo Gurkha Everest Expedition

16th May
Kenton Cool

Last May Kenton Cool broke the British record with his 12th summit of Everest.

He was back on the mountain until last week with fellow climber, Rob Owen, for a 13th attempt.  

Kenton Cool (L) & Rob OwenKenton Cool (L) & Rob Owen - photo Kenton Cool Facebook

On 16th May Cool told his followers on Facebook that the weather and rope-fixing situation would have led to a 10-day delay, so they had decided to abandon the climb.  

This is what he posted.

Expedition team rules:

1) You come home
2) You come home as friends
3) You have fun
4) You summit

For an expedition to be successful, the first 3 rules are non-negotiable. Rob and I left Everest a couple of days ago after a tremendous trip to Nepal, a trip that more than fulfilled the first 3 rules.

Instead of a 13th summit I gained a new friend, a man who has taught me so much over the last few weeks and for that I thank you Rob Owen, you are a generous, humble, funny yet focused man.

Given current weather and the rope fixing situation, Rob and I felt that our enjoyment could not be enhanced by a summit, that family was more important than another 10 days of waiting on the mountain for weather and rope fixing.

I thought the decision to come home would be hard to bear yet it's been easy. There is often so much more to an expedition than reaching the summit.

I wish everyone still on the mountain a safe time.... remember the rules!

EverestEverest - photo Kenton Cool Facebook

Everest Expedition Facebook

May 10th


A South African man trying to climb Mount Everest on his own, without a permit was found hiding in a cave to avoid paying the climbing fee. 

43 year old, Ryan Sean Davy, was ordered off Mt Everest, he had his passport confiscated and was fined £17,000 - that's double the cost of the £8,500 fee to climb the mountain.

He told officials at base camp that he had climbed alone as far as Camp 2 at 6,400m - to acclimatise ahead of a summit push before he was caught.

Foreigners have to pay the Nepal government £8,500 for permission to climb the 8,848m peak.

The Permit fee is a significant source of revenue for the country.

It is extremely rare and dangersous for someone to attempt climbing Everest solo. Full details on the BBC website.

Ryan Sean Davey made the following statement on Facebook with some disrespectful references to the Nepalese as 'mountain Orks'.

Ryan Sean Davy on Mt Everest (photo: Facebook)Ryan Sean Davy on Mt Everest (photo: Facebook)













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