Prolonged Everest permits for groups only?
Maybe it will turn out to be not quite as bad as it looked first. A report of the Himalayan Times about the Everest permits has upset many mountaineers worldwide – including myself. The report said that the extension of last spring’s Everest permits by five years would apply strictly to groups not to individual climbers. Means: If even one member of an expedition would scale the mountain, permits of the other group members would be cancelled. After the avalanche accident in the Khumbu Icefall last April that had killed 16 Nepalese climbers and led to the premature end of the spring season, the government had announced that the 318 departed climbers could use their permits even within the next five years.
“It is next to impossible to regroup the same climbers for new expedition, as they reside in different parts of the world”, the Himalayan Times quoted Dambar Parajuli, president of the Expedition Operators Association of Nepal (EOA). “It’s a time to facilitate climbers rather than creating hurdles in the name of regulation.” Reportedly the members of an expedition operated by Himalayan Experience had already lost their Everest permits because Chinese climber Wang Jing, who used the group permit, had reached the summit on 23 May, after she had been flown to Camp 2 by helicopter.
Brice: Wait and See
I asked the New Zealander Russell Brice, owner of Himex, for a statement about the permit topic. “I had a meeting with the EOA yesterday and apparently all the new ministers in the Ministry are in verbal agreement for the five year individual permit”, Russ writes to me. “At the moment the document concerning this is at the Legal Department, from there it goes to the Finance Department and then to Congress. So there are still a few parts to the process to be considered before we will know the definite outcome.”
Date13. November 2014 | 23:37