The Chinese government has officially closed Mt. Everest to climbing this season from the north after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked Nepal killing over 4,000 people including 18 at Everest’s south side base camp.
Nima Tsering, head of the Tibetan Mountaineering Association, gave a talk at the north side (Chinese side) base camp of Mt. Everest yesterday explaining that the Chinese has closed climbing on Mt. Everest and all mountains in Tibet for the 2015 climbing season.
Two reasons were given for the closing:
1. Risk of another big earthquake (Tsering thinks there is a 50% chance of another big quake this season)
2. Respect to those in Nepal who have been devastated by this earthquake
— Adrian Ballinger (@alpenglowexp) April 29, 2015
“They’ve been relatively forward-thinking about it and I think they’re making a fair decision. I wish that the decision to go or not was made by the teams and not national governments, but this is a unique situation.” – Adrian Ballinger, Alpenglow Expeditions Leader from Lake Tahoe, CA who is currently at the north side base camp with clients
25 climbing teams containing over 300 people now need to figure out how to get home.
Many of the teams would have stayed and climbed. Now, that decision is out of their hands.
“There’s a lot of disappointment here because a lot of people wanted to stay and climb.”
“My best guess is at least half of the teams would have stayed and climbed.” – Adrian Ballinger