British and Sherpa climbers go missing while descending Mt. Everest

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A British climber and a Sherpa mountaineer guide have been missing since Tuesday morning after they fell while returning to the lower camps after summiting Mount Everest, according to media reports on Wednesday. The victims have been identified as Daniel Paul Peterson from the UK and Pas Tenji Sherpa from Makalu, Sangkhuwasabha, the Himalayan Times newspaper reported. The duo was part of 8K Expeditions.

The British climber and the Sherpa fell when a section of the route in the Hillary step below the summit collapsed on Tuesday morning, the report quoted a source as saying at the base camp. The incident reportedly occurred when the duo was returning to the lower camps after summiting the world’s highest peak at around 4:40 am on May 21. According to the report, a team led by Nga Tenji Sherpa and Pasang Sherpa of Summit Force Pvt Ltd carried out rescue and saved other climbers when the route broke at the Hillary section.

“A few climbers were immediately rescued but Peterson and Pas Tenji fell down,” eyewitnesses told the base camp officials. Earlier on May 13, two Mongolian climbers – Usukhjargal Tsedendamba and Prevsuren Lkhagvajav – died above 8,500m while descending from the summit point, the report said. On Wednesday, Nepal’s veteran summiteer Kami Rita Sherpa made history by scaling Mt Everest for the 30th time, breaking his own record that he made 10 days ago for the highest number of ascents on the world’s highest peak.

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The 54-year-old legendary mountaineer reached the 8,849-metre peak at 7:49 am local time, according to Tashi Lakpa Sherpa, Chief Executive Officer at the 14 Peaks Expedition high-altitude sports company. Altogether, 414 climbers from 41 expeditions have acquired permission to scale the 8,848.86 m-tall peak this season. Official data from 2023 showed that since 1953’s Hillary-Norgay summit, around 7,000 mountaineers have successfully scaled Mt. Everest while over 300 have lost their lives.