Collapse on Mount Everest caught on camera; overcrowding in focus again as climbers go missing

Mountain guide shared videos of Everest expedition, highlighting cornice collapse, rescue, and challenges faced by climbers.

Written By Arshdeep kaur
First Published25 May 2024
The IFMGA guide said several climbers were stuck in the overcrowding, and oxygen was running low.
The IFMGA guide said several climbers were stuck in the overcrowding, and oxygen was running low.(Instagram)

A mountain guide shared a video of a cornice collapse on Mount Everest on Instagram detailing the ordeal of the climbers he led during their descent from the highest mountain peak. His post put back the focus on overcrowding on Nepal's Everest.

A cornice (snow cornice) is an overhanging edge of snow that forms on the crest of a mountain ridge or along the sides of gullies. These are created by wind-blown snow accumulating over sharp terrain breaks and are extremely dangerous for mountaineers and hikers.

The guide shared that four climbers nearly perished when the cornice collapsed but were "thankfully" rescued. However, two climbers are reportedly still missing.

Chaos, tense moments, fatalities

The International Federation of Mountain Guides (IFMGA) guide Vinayak Malla shared clips of his group of climbers showing the many challenges they faced on Everest, including the chaos, tense moments, and fatalities.

Malla shared an incident from Tuesday (May 21), saying that the summit ridge on this trip felt different from his previous ones.

Sharing the ordeal, Malla wrote in a post on Instagram: “May 21, 2024, I, along with @luchin.vig and Budhha stood atop the world’s highest peak and are now safely back in Base Camp. The Everest summit ridge felt different than my previous experiences on the mountain. There was soft snow, many cornices and rocky sections covered in snow. The weather station was even half buried in snow.”

“After summiting, we crossed the Hillary Step, traffic was moving slowly then suddenly a cornice collapsed a few meters ahead of us. There was also a cornice under us. As the cornice collapsed, four climbers nearly perished yet were clipped onto the rope and self-rescued. Sadly, two climbers are still missing. We tried to traverse yet it was impossible due to the traffic on the fixed line,” it added.

The IFMGA guide said several climbers were stuck in the traffic and oxygen was running low.

“I was able to start breaking a new route for the descending traffic to begin moving slowly once again. We returned to rest at Camp 3 and proceeded back to Base Camp on May 22,” he added.

Malla shared three videos of his expedition. Where the first one showed a clip of before the cornice collapsed, after the cornice collapsed, and after repairing the route, and climbers are passing.

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