Monday, April 19, 2010

Sherpas to Clean Everest's 'Death Zone'

A 30-year old sherpa and his team of trained climbers plan to scale Mt. Everest and clean the debris from the infamous "Death Zone." The area above 26,000' is known as the "death zone" because of the lack of oxygen. While many climbers have cleaned Everest at lower elevations, none have dared to clean above the 26k' mark. The climber in charge of the expedition says there is litter there which dates back to the first time Everest was scaled in 1953, by Sir Edmund Hillary.

The team hopes to clean nearly 45,000 lbs. of oxygen and water bottles, gas canisters, ropes, tents, and more - items many climbers discard on their way down out of sheer exhaustion. They are also set to recover the corpse of a man who died in 2008, then cremate it at the base of the mountain. The leader of the team says he has seen three corpses lying in the Death Zone "for years."

Mt. Everest has been derided as 'the world's tallest garbage dump.' Much of the trash has been covered by snow for years, but global warming has melted a lot of that, revealing the junk.

© C Harris Lynn, 2010

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