The New York Times Looks at What it Takes to Climb Everest.

It isn’t often that mountaineering and adventure sports get coverage from the mainstream media, let alone the “paper of record.” But a few days back The New York Times posted an interesting article sharing details on just what it takes to climb Mt. Everest.

The article is written for someone who doesn’t necessarily know a lot about mountaineering in general, or Everest specifically. It answers basic questions like how tall is the mountain and how do you even get there? It tackles tougher issues such as how many people die on the mountain each year and how many summit too. It also talks about the costs involved, explains who the Sherpas are, and delves into the challenges of making the climb too.

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This Holiday Gift Could Change Someone’s Life Forever.

For the past several weeks I’ve been sharing all kinds of different holiday gift guides, with suggestions on what to buy your favorite outdoor adventurer. Obviously, those kinds of stories do quite well during the holiday season, as we’re all scrambling around looking for ideas on what to give the people we love. Now, with just a week to go until Christmas, I’d like to suggest one other idea for the season of giving. This is a gift that could easily change someone’s life in important and dramatic ways.

It is no secret that one of my favorite philanthropic and humanitarian organizations is the Himalayan Stove Project. In fact, I first wrote about the HSP way back in January of 2012, and since then I have posted regular updates on its progress. For those who don’t know, the Himalayan Stove Project is dedicated to improving the health and environment of people living in the Himalaya by replacing their old, inefficient, and dangerous stoves with new, modern, and clean cook stoves that use less fuel and give up far less pollutants. These stoves are built by a Colorado-based company called Envirofit, and are an affordable option for replacing the open fire pits and primitive stoves that are common throughout Nepal and Tibet.

To date, the HSP has given out thousands of these stoves, impacting the lives of more than 40,000 people. But of course, there is still plenty of work to be done. Through the holidays, the organization is running a a gift giving campaign, in which supporters can buy Envirofit stoves in the name of others. A single stove costs $150, which includes shipping to Kathmandu and installation in a family home in the Himalaya. All the stoves bought under the gift giving program also include an e-card to the person you’re buying it for, sharing details about this special gift and how it is changing lives.

If you’re struggling to think of a truly memorable and life-altering gift this holiday season, consider making a donation to the Himalayan Stove Project or buying one (or more!) of the stoves outright. You can bet that your contribution will have a big impact on the lives of those who get the new stove, while providing a bit of extra karma for you in a time when we can all use a little more of that.

Find out more at HimalayanStoveProject.org.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – This Holiday Gift Could Change Someone’s Life Forever

** see also: – Best Xmas presents.

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How Much Will it Cost to Climb Everest in 2018?

Alan Arnette has compiled his annual examination of the costs of climbing Everest and as usual the post is filled with lots of interesting information. If you’re thinking of joining an expedition to the highest mountain on the planet sometime in the near future, you’ll definitely want to give this article a look. For those going in 2018, here’s what you can expect to pay.

So how much will it cost next year? Alan says it will be a minimum of $30,000, with most climbers paying somewhere in the neighborhood of about $45,000. That’s an increase over 2017, with prices climbing both on the lower end of the spectrum and the premium high-end as well.

In 2018, the price range for an Everest climb starts at $28,000 and goes up to as much as $85,000. You can have a completely custom climb for $115,000 as well, although few take that option. At the bottom end, if you want to mostly go it alone, with some support, you can get away with spending as little as $20,000, although as Alan points out, this is for the extreme risk takers only.

In recent years we’ve seen a rise in the number of low-cost expedition options on Everest, which is what is fueling the larger numbers of climbers on the mountain as more alpinists from India and China rush to make the climb. Even though more of these inexpensive options exist, prices have continued to climb. Alan says that over the past five years companies have increased their prices by 6% on the Nepal side of the mountain and 12% on the Tibetan side.

The article also breaks down where the costs go, with estimated prices for travel, permits and insurance, gear, logistical costs, and more. This gives anyone who is planning an Everest expedition a chance to see exactly where there money is going and how much they should expect to budget in any given category. For instance, Alan says that you can plan on spending a minimum of $800 per person for food alone and supplemental oxygen – used by 97% of climbers – is $550 a bottle. You’ll also need things like a down suit, high-altitude boots, sleeping bags, packs, and a lot more.

The last bit of information in the article that is probably of interest is a break down of what all the major companies charge for an Everest expedition. That chart is in alphabetical order and offers prices for climbing on the North and South Sides of the mountain. If a company operates on the South Side in Nepal, they may also offer different rates for climbing with a Sherpa guide versus a Western guide as well. Allan also offers insights into each company’s results and success level from 2017 too.

As I’ve said already, this is a fantastic resource for anyone who is thinking of climbing Everest in the near future. It is both an eye-opening and realistic look at the increasing costs of a Himalayan expedition in general. Most mountains are cheaper to climb than the Big Hill of course, but they can often be in the same price range.

Check out the full story here.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – How Much Will it Cost to Climb Everest in 2018?

** see also: – Would You Pay $95,000 to Climb Everest in Just 4 Weeks?

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Would You Pay $95,000 to Climb Everest in Just 4 Weeks?

Over the past few years, Adrian Ballinger’s Alpenglow team has set down the ground work for what has become known as “flash” expeditions to Everest and other big peaks. These climbs take a fraction of the time that more traditional expeditions require, but cost considerably more as a result. Now, another outfitter is getting into the fast-climb game, and they’ve set an unprecedented price level too.

Alan Arnette has all the details on the new Furtenbach Adventures Everest Expedition, which promises to get climbers to the summit in just four weeks time, and offer them unlimited oxygen along the way, all for the low, low price of just $95,000. Yep, you read that right. In an era where more Nepali companies are leading teams to the mountain at a discounted price, this new experience from Furtenbach will set you back nearly $100k.

So how do they do it? Both Alpenglow and Furtenbach get their clients set up with a proper fitness program to prepare for the climbs, but more importantly they use oxygen tents prior to departing for the Himalaya to start the acclimatization process long before the mountaineers step foot on Everest. As a result, they arrive in Nepal and Tibet much better prepared for the altitude, cutting down on the number of trips up and down the mountain and even the trek to Base Camp.

Alpenglow has had good success with this strategy in recent years, so it only seems natural that someone else would emulate it. In contrast to the 4 week climb offered by Ballinger, now Furtenbach Adventures, most people looking to summit Everest spend about two months in the Himalaya. The pitch here is that time is money, and that these expeditions save their clients as much as four weeks away from home. They also pitch these trips as being safer, since they don’t spend nearly as much time climbing to high camps to acclimatize.

Alan goes into more detail on these types of expeditions, sharing his thoughts throughout the article. He also interviews Lukas Furtenbach about this new venture as well, with the German offering his thoughts on the science behind the use of oxygen tents, how it helps his clients to prepare, and much more.

Is this the future of mountaineering? Only time will tell. But, that future is starting look more fragmented with the rich client paying exorbitant fees to reach the summit, while an increasing number of climbers choose the “budget” route instead.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: –   Would You Pay $95,000 to Climb Everest in Just 4 Weeks?

** see also: –  How Much Does It Cost To Climb Mt. Everest?

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Are You Ready to Climb Everest?

By virtue of being the highest mountain on the planet, Everest has always been viewed by many climbers as the pinnacle of mountaineering. Over the past 20 years, commercialization of the mountain has made it more accessible than ever before, to the point that hundreds make the attempt each year from both the North and South. But not all of those climbers are truly prepared for what they’ll face once they get to Nepal or Tibet.

So how do you know if you’re ready for Everest? That’s the exact question posed by an article by Bill Allen at mountaintrip.com. Mountain Trip is one of those companies that leads teams to Everest each year, and Allen has himself summited the mountain on three separate occasions. In the blog post, he not only takes a look at the requirements a perspective climber should have to take on the world’s tallest peak, but blows some holes in the myths that surround such an expedition too.

In terms of experience, Allen says that they expect their clients to have climbed both Aconcagua and Denali at the bare minimum. In other words, 8000-meter experience isn’t necessarily a necessity, but it is helpful. He also talks about the level of fitness requires for the climb, as well as whether or not an expedition to Everest is even right for certain individual people. As he notes, it is a long climb that lasts nearly two months. That’s a long time to be away from home and not everyone adapts to that situation well.

Apparently this article is the first of several that will be written to help prepare those considering an attempt on Everest. At the end of the post Bill indicates that his next story will help climbers decide which route they should take. He’ll also look at the dynamic of different sized teams, whether or not to climb with western guides or Nepali guides, and more.

You can read his current article here and we’ll keep an eye out for others down the line.

The Himalayan Database Will Soon be Available for Free.

When it comes to climbing the big mountains in Nepal – and lesser extent Tibet – The Himalayan Database is the definitive record for everything has been accomplished there over the past 50 years. The information contained in the database has been meticulously compiled by Ms. Elizabeth Hawley for five decades, and soon all of those records will be available to the general public online for free.

In an announcement posted to The Himalayan Database website reads as follows:

“Version 2 of the Himalayan Database will be released to the general public at no charge via download from this site in early November 2017 after the Spring 2017 update to the database is completed. Owners of the current version will need to download and upgrade to the new version in order to gain access to future updates and changes.”

The data covers all expeditions to the Himalaya starting in 1905 and running through 2003. It covers more than 340 different mountains across Nepal, and along the border with Tibet. According to the database website “the database is searchable by peak, climber, expedition, nationality, season, mortality rates and causes and more.”

Updated data from 2004 through 2016 is available via the Himalayan Database website, with the 2017 data to be compiled and added later. The combined information from the downloadable database and the online resource, marks the most comprehensive collection of information on mountaineering expeditions ever assembled.

Over the past few years, Ms. Hawley has eased into retirement, after maintaining the database on her own for decades. Much of her work has been taken up by German climber and journalist Billi Bierling, who along with a few other dedicated people. have been collecting and compiling the data.

Now, this resource will become available to anyone who wants to access it and search its information. For those of us who do regular reporting on the Nepal and the expeditions that visit there, it is a welcome addition to help us with that coverage. But, beyond that, it should prove very interesting for anyone who follows the mountaineering scene closely.

Watch himalayandatabase.com for an update soon.

Autor : Kraig Becker

* source: – The Himalayan Database Will Soon be Available for Free

** see also: –

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Himalaya Spring 2017: It’s Finally Go Time on Everest.

After years of planning, months of preparation and training, and weeks of acclimatizing and waiting, it’s now starting to look like it is time to climb on Everest. The teams on both the North and South Sides of the mountain have been patiently watching the weather forecasts for the past week or so, and conditions are starting to finally come around. But the weather windows look tight, so squads are setting off now to get themselves into position for the summit push to come.

If you’ve been following the season closely, and you thought to yourself that the weather seems odd this year, you’re not alone. In fact, Alan Arnette has written an article on that very subject, quoting meteorologist Michael Fagin of Everest Weather who has described conditions this year as the most difficult to forecast in the 14 years he’s been predicting weather in the Himalaya. He also indicated that the forecast models have often changed ever 12 hours, which is why it has been so difficult to nail down a good window to launch summit bids.

But, things are changing, and there does seem to be a two short periods of stability about to arrive. The first should take place on May 18-21 – essentially today through Sunday, and then again from May 23-25, which is the middle of next week. The teams on the mountain are now scrambling to take advantage of these calmer days ahead.

Amongst them is the IMG squad, which sent their first wave of climbers up yesterday. They’re expected to reach Camp 2 today, and if everything goes according to schedule, they should be ready to summit over the weekend. But, the team’s guides are keeping a close eye on conditions to determine the right time to climb. They also have two other waves of climbers waiting for their turn, with another one likely to set out today.

Joining IMG will be the Mountain Professionals who also set out yesterday, along with on the South Side, along with the 7 Summits Club and Summit Club on the North Side. Others are sure to join in on the fun too, while some are likely to hold off and wait for the second window to open early next week.
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