Published: Sat, May 18, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Sherpa scales Mt. Everest for record 23rd time

Sherpa scales Mt. Everest for record 23rd time

The 49-year-old Sherpa climber Kami Rita scaled Mount Everest for the 23rd time on Wednesday, breaking his own record of the most successful ascents of the world's highest peak.

Ethnic Sherpas from the valleys around Everest have become synonymous with high-altitude climbing, crucial for Nepal´s lucrative mountaineering industry, which nets the impoverished Himalayan country more than $4 million a year.

Sherpa set the record by climbing the hard and majestic mountain from the Nepal side.

Kami Rita first scaled Everest in 1994 and has been making trips almost every year since.

In this April 4, 2019, file photo, record holding Sherpa guide Kami Rita checks oxygen cylinders and other supplies needed for climbing Mount Everest, in Kathmandu, Nepal.

A guide for more than two decades, he first summited the 8,848-metre (29,029-foot) peak in 1994 when working for a commercial expedition.

"I am still strong and want to climb Sagarmatha 25 times", Kami had told Reuters before leaving for the mountain in March referring to the Nepali name for Everest.

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Kami and seven other Nepali's reached the top of Mount Everest on Tuesday. "I did not even know you could set records earlier", he said last month before setting off for Everest base camp.

21st times Everest summiteer Apa Sherpa and Phurwa Tashi Sherpa have already taken retirement from climbing.

This season, almost 1,000 people, including 378 paying climbers, will attempt the summit. The mountain also claimed the lives of five climbers, including an experienced Sherpa guide who was knocked down a crevasse by a rescue helicopter.

This could take the total past last year´s record of 807 people reaching the summit.

Mountaineer Alan Hinkes is the first Briton to conquer all 14 of the world's highest mountains, including Everest.

During this time, climbers gradually do longer and longer climbs from base camp, before going for the summit.

Almost 5,000 climbers have scaled the peak since the pioneering ascent, many multiple times.

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