Culture&Arts

85-year-old dies during bid to become oldest Everest climber

85-year-old dies during bid to become oldest Everest climber

Speed-climber Ueli Steck, of Switzerland, died just last week as he prepared to climb Mount Everest. The cause of death was not immediately clear, but mountaineering official Gyanendra Shrestha, who is at Base Camp, said he likely suffered cardiac arrest.

Hundreds of climbers have died on Everest alongside the more than 4,000 who've successfully summited the world's highest mountain since 1953.

"Sherchan died of apparent heart attack", said Ang Tshering Sherpa, chief of the Nepal Mountaineering Association.

Another Nepali man, Shailendra Kumar Upadhyaya, 82, died in 2011 while attempting to scale Everest.

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Sherchan made an earlier attempt at reclaiming the record in 2015 but a devastating natural disaster hit the country while he was on his way to the base camp.

While climbers have to be at least 16 years of age to climb the mountain, there are no age restrictions beyond that, though the Nepal Mountaineering Association is hoping to set the age range between 16-76.

Director General at the Tourism Department Dinesh Bhattarai said that preparations are underway to bring back the body of the deceased mountaineer from Lukla this afternoon.

Mr Sherchan's guide, Shiva Sapkota, told DPA that he had been in good physical health but had not spent time at high altitude since 2015. Min Bahadur Sherchan was 85 years old.

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His record was broken in 2013 by 80-year-old Japanese climber Yuichiro Miura.

Picture taken on March 6, 2017 shows Min Bahadur Sherchan, an 86-year-old former Gurkha greets while expressing his plan to become the oldest person ever to conquer Mt. Qomolangma (Everest) during a press meet organized in Kathmandu, Nepal.

A government minister and fellow climbers were also among those who paid their respects before the body was cremated.

Sherchan had six great-grandchildren and 17 grandchildren.

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