/ Everest

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mockerkin on 31 May 2013
This is not a new thread. We all know that.
Today climbing Everest is something that some people would put in their diary & boast about. 45k to 65k. So you are strong and rich enough to plod up there with all the fixed ropes, ladders, more fixed ropes & more ladders suggested recently. I have only simple alpine experience but have been informed by older family & friends with Everest experience.
So I suggest that a climber e.g. climbing something less high than Everest
but grade wise harder, even local crags, leaves many Everest climbers behind.
I am not including professional guides who need to make a living.




martinph78 on 31 May 2013
In reply to mockerkin: Here we go again...

All I will add is that, as a mountaineer, standing on the highest mountain in the world has an appeal that ticking off a HVS 5b at Causey Quarry won't ever come close to.

Everyones dreams are different, I don't agree with yours, you won't agree with mine. I'd never tell anyone what they should dream of though.

GrahamD - on 31 May 2013
In reply to mockerkin:

Why aren't you including guides ? they are at least as complicit in promoting the circus a "an attainable goal for anyone with money" as anyone else.
derryclimbs - on 31 May 2013
In reply to GrahamD:

I think he means that guides are still climbers where as the guided are not
Trangia - on 31 May 2013
In reply to mockerkin:

Isn't Everest "an easy day for a lady"
Barrington - on 31 May 2013
Or pensioner even?
GrahamD - on 31 May 2013
In reply to derryclimbs:

> I think he means that guides are still climbers where as the guided are not

I don't see why the guided aren't necessarily climbers. I don't think many people go to Everest without some climbing CV.

in fact, its worse than that. If there is a distinction somehow between climbers and non climbers, its the climbers that should know better that are at blame (if you want to apportion blame) than non climbers who don't.
mrchewy - on 31 May 2013
In reply to GrahamD: I dunno - I had to teach a lad to make a figure of eight knot just four weeks before he went to Nepal. He summited Everest a month later.
Jonny2vests - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Martin1978:
> (In reply to mockerkin) Here we go again...
>
> All I will add is that, as a mountaineer, standing on the highest mountain in the world has an appeal that ticking off a HVS 5b at Causey Quarry won't ever come close to.
>
> Everyones dreams are different, I don't agree with yours, you won't agree with mine. I'd never tell anyone what they should dream of though.

So do you value the 'standing on' more than the climbing? I guess most peoples experience of himalayan mountaineering doesn't involve any climbing (I find it hard to get excited about walking).

In terms of climbing, summits to me are the end of the fun. And how high they are above sea level is almost completely irrelevant to me. What makes sea level so special to people?
Jonny2vests - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to derryclimbs)
>
> [...]
>
> I don't think many people go to Everest without some climbing CV.

Really?
samreddevilz - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin: Everest is becoming Death Point now-a-days! Frequent death is occuring recently....
getandy - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin: I think everest is oversold and far to many of the challenges have been taken away with the commercial side to it. If I was gonna spend that sort of money i would much rather spend it funding an expedition to k2 or similar
Trangia - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to getandy:

"Climbed Everest" must still be a major tick in your obituary, and probably ranks above K2 or Pendle Hill?
Goucho on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Trangia:
> (In reply to getandy)
>
> "Climbed Everest" must still be a major tick in your obituary, and probably ranks above K2 or Pendle Hill?

Except that in the vast majority of cases, that should read "Got up Everest", as there is a world of difference between getting up something and climbing something.

And Everest doesn't come comes close to K2 as a climbing achievement.

Most of the people joining the queues for the summit, probably wouldn't be able to get beyond the first 3 feet of the Khumbu Icefall without a guide.

Saying you've 'done' Everest these days, has about as much credibility in terms of climbing, as a winter ascent of Pendle Hill - in fact there are probably fewer people who have done Pendle Hill in winter.

And even if you wanted to actually 'climb' it properly, you'd have to wear blinkers, and probably end up in a fight with a sherpa for stepping over the 97 miles of fixed rope.

Did you see that shot of Kenton Kool on the summit - looked like he'd just spent a cold winters night at a landfill site.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin: Every year without fail this topic rears it's ugly head at the end of May beginning of June.

The fact remains, 90% of everyone passing judgement here, all the so-called "real" climbers, have never done it then use the excuse; it's not an achievment anymore.

If it's so easy, go and do it.
Trangia - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Goucho:
> (In reply to Trangia)
> [...]
>
> >
> And Everest doesn't come comes close to K2 as a climbing achievement.
>
>

Can't agree with you. Sorry I used the wrong terminology "Conquered Everest" would read better in a Times Obituary
Bruce Hooker - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Trangia:

> If it's so easy, go and do it.

But why would anyone want to do something if it was easy? Given the price and the mess I can't understand why you see any interest in it... a bit like the idea of doing the highest mountain of each continent, a totally non-objective for a climber as the only criterion is height, not interest. Concentrating on height is a bit like saying size matters... or saying my Dad's tougher than your Dad and so on.

PS. I wouldn't use the word easy for something which costs so much and doubtless requires a considerable physical effort, I'd say it was of little interest, which is different.
andymac - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:

Would think about doing it if some rich chap was organising an expedition and was looking for a team.

Most I would spend would be 5k.

That would probably get me my boots ,jacket and a knife and fork.

45k to 65k ? Fu*k that.

Can think of far better ways to waste that sort of money.
Trangia - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Bruce Hooker:

Not me Bruce, you've responded to the wrong poster.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Bruce Hooker:
> (In reply to Trangia)
>
> [...]
>
> PS. I wouldn't use the word easy for something which costs so much and doubtless requires a considerable physical effort, I'd say it was of little interest, which is different.

That would be a better description Bruce. Many people have many different interests - many things that float their boat. Of interest to many people nowadays it may not be, but easy it most certainly is not.

It interests me because it's the highest. Others may be more of a technical challenge, however to tick off the highest is still something that interests me.
Bruce Hooker - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Trangia:

No, it was for Richiehill, I must have clicked incorrectly.
Goucho on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:
> (In reply to mockerkin) Every year without fail this topic rears it's ugly head at the end of May beginning of June.
>
> The fact remains, 90% of everyone passing judgement here, all the so-called "real" climbers, have never done it then use the excuse; it's not an achievment anymore.
>
> If it's so easy, go and do it.

I think there are many people on UKC who are more than capable of getting up Everest via the Tourist Path, without requiring a nanny, or a line of fixed ropes from base camp.

And probably the reason they haven't done it, is because they are into climbing, not high altitude fall walking, and don't consider queuing up with 200 hundred 'guides and their clients' to be particularly 'cool' or 'adventurous'.
Goucho on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Goucho: I meant to add - thanks to commercial 'guided' trips, Everest is nothing more than the highest circus in the world.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Goucho: I'm sure there are many people on here who have the technical ability to climb it. That is not in doubt. But to call it easy is the wrong word - as Bruce rightly pointed out. It's, quite frankly, insulting to many people that have either attempted or completed it.

It is not easy. If it is so easy, go and do it.
RobbieNClimb - on 01 Jun 2013
I do get the appeal of mountaineering - but not of Everest.

There are surely so many beautiful mountains, that are ALMOST as tall ..that are more difficult / technical, and that you don't have to share with hundreds of dead bodies, oxygen cyclinders, waste and crashed helicopters?

I don't get it. If I was a mountaineer I'd be wanting to climb Manasulu, Dalagiri, Ama Dablam etc. Each to their own I guess.
Goucho on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:
>
> It is not easy. If it is so easy, go and do it.

How many people who have been guided up Everest would be able to climb it under their own steam?

How many people who have been guided up Everest would be able to climb any of the major alpine routes. let alone under their own steam?

The fact that relatively in-experienced people can climb it by jugging up an endless series of fixed ropes on a route which would barely get an alpine grade of AD, between pre-prepared camps, with a constant chaperone to make sure you clip from one fixed rope to the next correctly, and that your crampons are on right, is a rather profound illustration of how hard it really is wouldn't you say?

If it was hard, you wouldn't get around 500 inexperienced climbers a year reaching the summit would you?













Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Goucho:
> (In reply to Richiehill)
> [...]
>
> How many people who have been guided up Everest would be able to climb it under their own steam?
>

Exactly, their own steam. They've still had to put the effort in.

> How many people who have been guided up Everest would be able to climb any of the major alpine routes. let alone under their own steam?
>

I actually know quite a few people that have paid to go up some of the major alpine routes with a guide and had very little experience prior to going on it. They all came back saying the same thing; they were knackered and it was a good experience. Similar to those that I know have climbed Everest, except they'd lost a lot more weight and were in absolute pieces for a lot longer.

> The fact that relatively in-experienced people can climb it by jugging up an endless series of fixed ropes on a route which would barely get an alpine grade of AD, between pre-prepared camps, with a constant chaperone to make sure you clip from one fixed rope to the next correctly, and that your crampons are on right, is a rather profound illustration of how hard it really is wouldn't you say?

Not at all, difficulty is relative. For someone that has never done any mountaineering then yes, without doubt it would be hard. For the most experienced mountaineers in the world, such as yourself, no, technically it wouldn't be hard. But I'm sure the vast majority of people that have actually completed it would describe it as physically challenging no matter how fit they were prior to going up.

>
> If it was hard, you wouldn't get around 500 inexperienced climbers a year reaching the summit would you?

First of all, I've not said it was hard. All I've said is that it's not easy. The very fact that an almost equal amount of people fail to climb the mountain and 1 in 10 of the attempts end in death is a far more profound illustration of how easy it isn't.

If it's so easy, go and do it. Most of the money that people are waving about is the hiring of sherpas, guides, transport etc. If it's going to be so easy for you, you wont need any of that. It'll be a couple of k in flights then that'd be it.
RobbieNClimb - on 01 Jun 2013

I used to read a lot about these thigns and i'm sure it's not a 1 in 10 fatality rate any more - that would place it up their with dalagiri etc..which it's just not. I would have thought 5% max, probably less.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill: Don't be stupid. A couple of k's my arse even if you're doing it with mates. Can't even get the permit for anywhere near that, let alone all the equipment/travel/fees etc. More expensive to do it solo than guided, and even splitting the costs with a team of 7 you still looking at over 20k a piece.

Hand me 30k and I will go do it next season for you. Kids, 80 year olds and amputees get up it so don't pretend that the biggest obstacle isn't money, because it is by far. Not everyone has daddy to fund their climbing lifestyle for them.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to RobbieNClimb:

http://climbing.about.com/od/mountainclimbing/a/Death-On-Mount-Everest.htm

http://theweek.com/article/index/228255/the-deadly-odds-of-climbing-mount-everest-by-the-numbers

You're possibly right, however thhese sites are where I got my figures from.

The very fact that there is a significant chance of dying on it means that it's not easy.

Going for a walk in the Yorkshire Dales is easy, going for a walk in the Peaks is easy. Not climbing the highest mountain in the world.
ads.ukclimbing.com
off-duty - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:
> (In reply to Richiehill) Don't be stupid. A couple of k's my arse even if you're doing it with mates. Can't even get the permit for anywhere near that, let alone all the equipment/travel/fees etc. More expensive to do it solo than guided, and even splitting the costs with a team of 7 you still looking at over 20k a piece.
>
> Hand me 30k and I will go do it next season for you. Kids, 80 year olds and amputees get up it so don't pretend that the biggest obstacle isn't money, because it is by far. Not everyone has daddy to fund their climbing lifestyle for them.

Full Service Cost: $27,450, 17,350, 20,750; Basic Climb Cost: $9950, 6250, 7550.
http://www.summitclimb.com/new/default.asp?mtype=&vid=99&chyes=y&prid=59

;-)
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to off-duty: Cheers! Interesting to read. Seen as though people are saying it's easy then the Basic Climb Cost should suffice. Not far off in my initial estimate. Add another 2k on for flights and you're sorted.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
Haha look at the not included list, you're still adding thousands onto the "full service". But if anyones willing to stump up, as its nothing....
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo: Haha, yeah doesn't matter about that. Considering that it's easy you'll only need some cramp-ons, a mountaineering axe, some waterproofs, insulating layer and a rucksack.

Wont be needing oxygen because it's so easy too.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill: haha its that easy... It's 500 dollars for a bottle of oxygen. You honestly think bare bones as possible could ever actually comes under 15k? Do you really think that?
r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:
> (In reply to r0x0r.wolfo) Haha, yeah doesn't matter about that. Considering that it's easy you'll only need some cramp-ons, a mountaineering axe, some waterproofs, insulating layer and a rucksack.
>
> Wont be needing oxygen because it's so easy too.

Well people have done it without oxygen...

Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo: Piece of pi** then. I'll wear t-shirt and shorts. May be some approach shoes.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill: Reductio ad absurdam. Let me guess now your going to say, "well I will do it tied up with no legs". Keep going, because you obviously don't think you've made it ridiculous enough.

As you think it is cheap, and people dont climb it, not because of the thousands of pounds it costs, but because they're just not as fit as a healthy 14 or 80 year old, then you fund a member of ukc to go. Easy, only a few k's as you say.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo: Unfortunately I'm one of those climbers that doesn't have a mummy and daddy to pay for everything for me. Otherwise I'd have attempted it myself.

I've not said it was cheap, and I've not said it was hard. All i've said was that it's not easy. You could include any number of reasons why; fitness, technicality, altitude, cost. All of these make it more difficult to complete than some are giving it credit for.

What I really don't understand is why people feel the need to attack others' interests etc. just because it's not their bag/too easy for them/too expensive for them.

My opinion is anyone that wants to go and attempt it, good luck to them. Enjoy it.
RobbieNClimb - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:
> (In reply to RobbieNClimb)
>
> http://climbing.about.com/od/mountainclimbing/a/Death-On-Mount-Everest.htm
>
> http://theweek.com/article/index/228255/the-deadly-odds-of-climbing-mount-everest-by-the-numbers
>
> You're possibly right, however thhese sites are where I got my figures from.
>
> The very fact that there is a significant chance of dying on it means that it's not easy.
>
> Going for a walk in the Yorkshire Dales is easy, going for a walk in the Peaks is easy. Not climbing the highest mountain in the world.


I think the problem with those links is that it says for every 10 who summits, 1 dies. That doesn't really give a good idea though, because many people wont summit, so it's not a good stat. The sites I've looked on give a death rate of about 3/4 percent. Given that there are so many inexperienced people climbing it, that doesn't seem too high. I imagine many of the deaths are from support staff. If all the people climbing it were experienced for it, the death rate would perhaps be lower still. The death rate on some mountains is well over 20 percent - and they're mountains where everyone climbing it is experienced mountaineers, making me think that they're A LOT more dangerous. I take your point, it's not a walk in the dales.. but it seems to me like there are many much harder climbs out there. That's one reason Everest wouldn't appeal to me so much if I were a mountaineer.

That whole region on Nepal is fairly damaged as well (litter, new buildings everywhere, thousands of tourists..it's not good). The Everest region is rapidly getting ruined by all these expeditions and treks.


r0x0r.wolfo - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:
> (In reply to r0x0r.wolfo) Unfortunately I'm one of those climbers that doesn't have a mummy and daddy to pay for everything for me. Otherwise I'd have attempted it myself.
>
> I've not said it was cheap, and I've not said it was hard. All i've said was that it's not easy. You could include any number of reasons why; fitness, technicality, altitude, cost. All of these make it more difficult to complete than some are giving it credit for.
>
> What I really don't understand is why people feel the need to attack others' interests

Of course you're not ;). No one's attacking anyone's interests, anyone can do as they please, if someone wants to hire personal sherpas to carry their belongings and cook for them thats fine. But at the end of the day most people can't afford the time off work, let alone the fortune it costs. Most climbers would use that money for a deposit on a house first and then use the rest to climb but just not a, ludicrously expensive, overcrowded, tourist route, that someones grandad can climb (I am being completely literal here as you well know).

I'm sure it requires a lot of fitness though and that month acclimatising is essential, I'm not sure why you mention 'technicality' as surely thats what all the guides, ladders, fixed ropes are there to avoid. It it were in Wales and cheap, we wouldn't be having the conversation as im sure you'd be telling me what its like. Anyway, I think that they should put a ladder up that step, there's no reason to risk sherpa's lives waiting for people to ascend a rope in front of them, completely pointless.
Richiehill - on 01 Jun 2013
In reply to RobbieNClimb: You're right it is, but on the flip side of the coin Nepal and the whole region is getting a massive amount of funding because of all these trips.

Your figures do seem more realistic I admit, the 1 in 10 stat seemed a bit high. Even so, the amount failing is higher than I expected. There are more people that fail to summit than there are that do - and by quite a significant margine too.

This is the most accurate set of stats I've found so far: http://www.adventurestats.com/tables/EverestAgeFat.shtml

I'm not arguing that other mountains don't offer a greater challenge or are a much better technical achievement, it's just a completely personal choice to climb it; and one which requires a significant comitment in many respects.
RobbieNClimb - on 02 Jun 2013
That is an interesting page, thanks.

It would also be interesting to see how these stats have changed over time - but really interesting to see (and maybe it would help with the debate) is the success rates of solo / alpine style attempts vs's 60K Expeditions. That would be good to see because it would allow for a comparison with other mountains in the region where mountains are approached in a different way.

The benefits of Everest are sadly pretty restricted in my view, despite what many tourists think - companies, a tourism sector in Kathmandu, and a short trail (the everest trail..and it's short in the bigger scheme of the country). 99% of the country get nothing from it - leave the Everest / Annapurna trail you realise how deeply impoverished Nepal is. It makes a 65K expedition to get to the top of the world, in the context of it all and how the money is distributed, seem all the more problematic. There are all sorts of problems with all this, so many problems I don't know where to start so I wont!
Bruce Hooker - on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to Richiehill:

When I said it wasn't easy I wasn't really agreeing with you, as said by another, the bit that's the least easy is paying for it :-)

You keep telling people to "go for it if it's so easy" but don't seem to grasp that a lot of people, me included, just have no desire (had in my case!) to climb this sort of mountain, that getting to the top of the highest mountain in the world just because it is highest is of no interest in itself.
Richiehill - on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to Bruce Hooker: Respect your opinions and interests, but mine are different. I just don't agree with anyone calling it "easy", especially if they've never done it.
needvert on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:
> ...amputees get up it...

There have been other amputees, but the first one that came to mind was Mark Inglis who lost both his lower legs while trapped on Mt Cook for a fortnight in a blizzard. He's probably not your average numpty.

Inglis began work as a professional mountaineer in 1979 as a search and rescue mountaineer for Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park.
needvert on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:
> (In reply to Richiehill)
> [...]
>
> Of course you're not ;). No one's attacking anyone's interests, anyone can do as they please, if someone wants to hire personal sherpas to carry their belongings and cook for them thats fine. But at the end of the day most people can't afford the time off work, let alone the fortune it costs. Most climbers would use that money for a deposit on a house first and then use the rest to climb but just not a, ludicrously expensive, overcrowded, tourist route, that someones grandad can climb (I am being completely literal here as you well know).

Not to pick on just your posts, but they remind me of things :)

One part of Andrew Lindblade's book Expeditions that hit home with me, was they spent every dime they had, every dime their friends and family would give or loan them, to pursue their mountaineering objectives.

Me, I'm just not that committed. I'll just plunder along amounting to at most nothing more than a mediocre climber. Sure, I'll have a well paid career that's going places, and I'll get my month of annual leave to undertake small things. I may even have put my money into smart investments, be able to afford a nice car and retire early.

But you know, I sure have a bit of respect for the guy who says f*ck it, I'm spending all the cash I got and I'm going to climb the highest mountain in the world.
ice.solo - on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:

several friends have climbed everest, and whilst many have also done much harder things, none of them describe it as 'easy'.
Richiehill - on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to needvert: The above two posts have covered everything I've been saying since I started posting on this thread.

I 100% agree with everything both of you have said.
pneame on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:
The book in this thread
http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=551352&v=1#x7363424
answers a lot of the questions I had about these managed expeditions.
It reaffirms my lack of interest in going on one, but I'm not about to denigrate those who choose to do so. There are, obviously, going to be those who are very ill-prepared, but many people prepare very hard and seriously.
The existence of this sort of thing in the modern world doesn't make me especially happy - but there are lots of other things that are perhaps more worth being bothered by.
pneame on 02 Jun 2013
In reply to pneame:
Conversely, Adam Booth's blog make's it seem somewhat attractive
http://www.boothybrothers.blogspot.co.uk
But he didn't have crowds!
mockerkin on 03 Jun 2013
In reply to pneame:
but there are lots of other things that are perhaps more worth being bothered by.

True, like dry tooling trad crags.
Babika - on 03 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:
Went out for dinner on Saturday night with my friend (a guide) who summitted for the 7th time a week ago. He said that he carried 20kg on the mountain and had to make his oxygen stretch far further than the "clients" as they have a sherpa to carry the extra.

Before you diss anyone's acheivements, try imaging carrying 20kg at over 8000m...... I can't

Awesome fitness, resilience and a huge amount of courage and responsibility springs to mind for me
mockerkin on 03 Jun 2013
In reply to Babika:
I'm not dissing anyone's achievements , obviously you have to be strong to climb Everest. What I am suggesting is that climbing Everest is now not a climbing feat, it is an endurance feat.
Babika - on 03 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:
Fair do's.

And you also excluded climbing guides which I thought was sensible. I just wanted to point out how much of a (dangerous) endurance feat it is and therefore probably comparable with quite a lot of big mountains that don't seem to attract the same vitriol from mountaineers. Not you, but others
Jonny2vests - on 04 Jun 2013
In reply to Bruce Hooker:
> (In reply to Richiehill)
>
> You keep telling people to "go for it if it's so easy" but don't seem to grasp that a lot of people, me included, just have no desire (had in my case!) to climb this sort of mountain, that getting to the top of the highest mountain in the world just because it is highest is of no interest in itself.

Yes.
paulh.0776 - on 13 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:
Oh bugger....there's only one way to settle this (is it difficult or not question), one of us is going to have to go and have a look and report back....by the looks of things we're all skint....which is a problem, so if we can persuade 3000 people to give us a fiver each we could draw lots on who goes.
ps other 8000m peaks are also available,

Given that we are all far more knowledgeable (tee hee)than joe public, I guess we would have more respect for someone who had climbed Makalu or Manaslu for example than Everest, but would still be interested in hearing about their experience.
abseil on 14 Jun 2013
In reply to mockerkin:

I think Messner had it right decades ago when he said style [of ascent] is everything.

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