Qomolangma not officially closed to climbers, Nepal says

Updated: 2015-05-05 09:22


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Qomolangma not officially closed to climbers, Nepal says

The Mount Qomolangma south base camp in Nepal is seen on April 26, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]


Some members of the climbing community said they suspected the Nepali government was trying to get out of refunding climbers for their permit fees by not closing the mountain.

"They are waiting for climbers to slowly, slowly reach their own conclusion that it is pointless to climb," said Alex Gavan, a Romanian climber who was ascending Lhotse, which shares part of the Qomolangma route.

"They don't want to take responsibility for the decision," he said.

The team known as the Icefall Doctors, which sets the route through the Khumbu icefalls each year, said it was too dangerous to rebuild this season.

"It is not possible to open the route this year," said Ang Dorjee Sherpa of the Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee, the body that operates the team.

"The icefall itself is not stable, and the route that was previously opened has been completely damaged," he said.

Last year, after 16 sherpas were killed in an avalanche, other sherpas refused to climb out of respect for their colleagues and caused an expedition boycott. But the mountain was not closed and permits continued to be extended.

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