Mount Everest: Nepal To Consider Ban On ‘Unseasoned’ Climbers

Nepalese officials are likely to sanction fresh measures allowing for a ban on “unseasoned” climbers come next spring. The regulations are likely to inhibit inexperienced, younger, as well as disabled climbers from attempting to ascend the mountain’s great heights. According to official sources, permits to climb Everest may only be granted to seasoned climbers with a proven history of trekking peaks higher than 6,500 metres. While Everest has historically remained a prized and captivating destination for aspiring climbers, recent times have attracted the attention of relatively novice and inexperienced trekkers.

Everest, famously acknowledged as one of the most awe-inspiring tourist attractions on the planet, remains a vital conduit of economic sustenance for Nepal’s reeling infrastructure particularly in light of the disaster in the region earlier this year. Nepal’s Minister for Tourism Kripasur Sherpa has announced that the country is prepared to implement these restrictions prior to next season in an attempt to ensure safety and well-being of the climbers attempting to scale the mountain’s extraordinary heights.

Photo via Getty Images
Photo via Getty Images

The issue of safety was brought to the fore after last April’s earthquake, when numerous Nepalese guides perished under the weight of the ensuing avalanche. The event prompted authorities to contain and possibly even restrict the number of local residents who may attempt to volunteer as tour guides for designated expeditions as soon as peak season approaches.

However, an all-out prohibition on the young, too old, or disabled is unlikely to affect results owing to their significantly low numbers. According to statistics, the first disabled climber scaled the peak of the Everest in 1998 and a blind climber traversed the summit in 2001. The mountain has been scaled by a 13-year-old and an 80-year-old since then. More than 4,000 climbers have reached the summit since 1953, when the New Zealander Edmund Hillary and Sherpa mountaineer Tenzing Norgay became the first ever to accomplish the feat.

Meanwhile, plans to restrict disabled climbers from attempting to ascend to the top of the world have been slammed by famed New Zealander climber Mark Inglis, the first ever double amputee to reach the world’s highest peak.

“The whole concept of restricting disabled – even the use of that word – is just wrong, because it really doesn’t matter how many limbs you’ve got, but how able you are. There are plenty of people out there who are able bodied who will never ever make it up Everest. You have to be able to look after yourself on Everest. You can’t expect anyone to give you a hand up, whether you’re limbless or blind or theoretically able bodied.”

Many experienced trekkers and tour operators from Britain for instance are looking to return to Mount Everest while continuing to remain critical of the stance of the British Government for repeatedly cautioning climbers against attempting to resume expeditions including those restricted to the mountain’s base camp, particularly in the aftermath of this year’s tragic event.

The Himalayas stretch across the northeastern territories of the subcontinent of India. They cover an amazing 1,500 miles and pass through the nations of India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Bhutan, and more importantly Nepal. The Himalayan range comprises three parallel ranges famously referred to as the Greater Himalayas, the Lesser Himalayas, and the Outer Himalayas. These territories include splendidly awe-inspiring peaks like Everest and K2, which along with others enjoy a stature that has assumed legendary proportions.

 (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)
(Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Mount Everest, standing at a staggering 29,029 ft (8,848 m), is not only the loftiest peak in the Himalayas, but the highest on the entire planet, followed by the marvelous Karakora (K2), Kailash, Kanchenjunga, Nanga Parbat, Annapurna, and Manasklu among others.

Image credit: Paula Bronstein /Getty Images