Pete Athans: Everest is a “Powder Keg”
Pressures on climbers and Sherpas are greater than ever, he says.
As various accounts (here and here) have been given of last week’s attack by a group of Sherpas on a team of professional climbers, he warns of dangerous pressures on everyone on the mountain. (Read an account by one of the climbers involved, Simone Moro.)
It’s symptomatic of the overcrowded, commercialized powder keg situation that exists on Everest now. You have so many climbers from so many different nations, so many different teams, there is all this pent-up ambition.
There’s a demand on self and a demand on people who live there, whose homeland it is. And obviously there’s competition for space on the mountain. It creates this edgy, competitive atmosphere.
We saw the same thing when