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11 die in 10 days, including a GB climber. Congestion is blamed for some deaths as the authorities say other factors played a part. UPDATED

An American man has become the 11th to die on Everest in 10 days.

Christopher John Kulish had made it to the summit from the Nepalese side of the mountain on Monday 27th May.

He died suddenly shortly afterwards.

The 62-year-old was an attorney from Boulder, Colorado.

"He saw his last sunrise from the highest peak on Earth," his brother, Mark, said in a news release.

"At that instant, he became a member of the ‘7 Summit Club,' having scaled the highest peak on each continent.

"We are heartbroken at this news."

Christopher KulishChristopher Kulish
















A British man, 44-year old Robin Haynes Fisher, died after falling ill while descending from the summit.

His partner, Krystyn Carriere, had gone with him as far as Everest Base Camp.

"He got his goal. My heart is broken. It was his ultimate challenge," she said.

An Irish man, Kevin Hynes, also died on Everest on Friday.

The season Nepal has issued a record 381 permits, at £8,600 each.

An expedition leader and a guide have both blamed delays near the summit for the deaths of American Don Cash and Indian Anjali Kulkarni earlier in the week.

It's thought that overcrowding at the top may also have played a part in other deaths on the mountain.

More than 200 climbers were taking advantage of clear weather to attempt to reach the top from both the China and Nepal sides.

Wednesday 22nd May was said to have been one of the busiest ever days on the mountain.

EverestTraffic jam at the top - photo Project Possible

Teams had to line up for hours risking frostbite and altitude sickness.

Nepal authorities deny accusations that the rise in Mount Everest deaths is solely due to overcrowding.

The tourism director general, Dandu Raj Ghimire, said adverse weather conditions had also contributed.

Mr Ghimire said periods of fine weather had been short so the number of people on the routes had been 'higher than expected'.

Mr Ghimire offered 'heartfelt condolences to those who've passed away and prayers to those who are still missing'.

"Mountaineering in the Himalayas is in itself an adventurous, complex and sensitive issue requiring full awareness yet tragic accidents are unavoidable," he said.

55-year old Don Cash from Utah collapsed while taking photographs after reaching the summit.

His lead guide said that the Sherpa guides resuscitated him and attempted to drag him down to Camp 4, the camp closest to the summit.

However they were stuck in the traffic jam last Wednesday for several hours and Mr Cash died.

Don CashDon Cash

"Our Team did their best to save his life," a statement from the lead guide said.

"Despite their best efforts in providing the best guidance, sufficient oxygen supplies and medical support they could not save his life and they waited there for more than two hours keeping their own life at risk.

"They wanted to see in case he might survive and bring him down. But finally, they left his body without hope and came down to Camp 4."

Anjali Kulkarni, also 55, died while descending after reaching the top.

Anjali KulkarniAnjali Kulkarni
















The expedition organiser, Arun Treks, said heavy traffic at the summit had delayed her descent and caused her death.

"She had to wait for a long time to reach the summit and descend," Thupden Sherpa said.

"She couldn't move down on her own and died as Sherpa guides brought her down."

Another three climbers died in the next 24 hours, at least one of whom was stuck in heavy traffic.

It brought the death toll on the mountain to seven in seven days.

That's more than the total for the whole of last year.

So, what's it like to climb Everest?

PlanetSKI's Squash Falconer reported for us back in 2012:

Squash FalconerSquash Falconer














The three climbers died of exhaustion on their way back down on Thursday 23rd May.

They were Indians Kalpana Das, who was 52, and 27-year-old Nihal Bagwan, and a 65-year-old Austrian who was on the northern Tibet side of Everest.

A local tour organiser told the media that Bagwan had been stuck in the traffic for more than 12 hours and was exhausted.

Nepal has issued a record 381 permits to scale Everest this season, with 140 people granted permits from the Tibetan side.

Meanwhile a Sherpa climber, Kami Rita, has summited Mount Everest for a record 24th time.

It's the second time in a week he has reached the top.

Kami Rita SherpaKami Rita Sherpa


















He broke his own record last week when he climbed Everest for the 23rd time.

Now he has stood on the summit for the 24th time.

The 49-year old man has a target of 25 ascents of Everest before he retires from high mountain climbing.

Rita's two closest peers have climbed the peak 21 times, but both have retired from mountain climbing.

Rita first scaled Everest in 1994 and has been making the trip nearly every year since.

Earlier the British climber, Kenton Cool, reached the 8,848m (29,029ft) summit for the 14th time.

Kenton Cool made the climb with Michael Lavelle.

Mr Lavelle is head of the corporate and investment banking for the UK and Ireland at Citigroup Inc.

Kenton Cool at Everest summitKenton Cool at Everest summit















On Tuesday last week a team of Nepalese guides became the first expedition to scale Mount Everest during this year's climbing season.

It had been setting the ropes for the hundreds of climbers who will follow.

There are 41 different teams with a total of 378 climbers who have been permitted to scale the world's highest mountain during the spring climbing season.

There are an equal number of guides helping them to get to the summit.


An Irish climber has gone missing  and is presumed dead after reaching the summit.

Séamus Lawless, who is 39,  was part of a team of climbers who reached the peak on Thursday.

He is an assistant professor at the School of Computer Science at Trinity College, Dublin.

According to the BBC, he is reported to have gone missing at an altitude of 8,300 metres, in an area known as "the balcony", near the mountain's summit.

"Séamus and his family are in our thoughts during this extremely distressing time," said a statement from Trinity College.

An Indian climber, 27-year old Ravi Thakar from New Delhi, was found dead on Friday in a tent on the South Col of Mount Everest.

The cause of death was not immediately known, said Thaneswor Guragain of the Seven Summit Treks agency.

This year's climbing campaign has seen mountaineers and sherpas injured by rock falls, while others have slipped on the Lhotse Face or suffered altitude sickness.

Almost 300 people have died trying to climb Everest.

Around 4,500 people have reached the summit.

It's the 10th most deadly mountain with a 4% fatality rate.

Annapurna I is the 10th highest mountain in the world and is the most dangerous to climb, with a fatality rate of 32%.

K2, second-highest peak in the world, is almost as dangerous, with a fatality rate of 29%.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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