Mount Everest is probably everyone’s dream to climb. The tallest peak in the world has been a popular destination for thousands of climbers throughout the decades. And to adventure seekers, climbing this peak is a proud concern. While climbers dream of climbing this mountain, they might yet learn about the possible dangers this mountain brings. The Death Zone, also known as Rainbow Valley, is one of the most dangerous places on Everest, which has taken the lives of many mountaineers. More than 310 people have died while attempting Mount Everest. So, what famous body was found on Everest? Here is a list of popular climbers who died while attempting Mount Everest.
Many daring adventurers have climbed the peak without oxygen, in a short period, and without professional guides. Some have successfully reached the top of the mountain, while others have tragically lost their lives. And to this date, the body of the dead climbers remain in Everest. The first reason is that the rescue is difficult during the descent, and the weather condition plays a crucial role in climbing and descending.
What you have to consider are the bad weather challenges and the treacherous routes. Climbers must prepare well physically, mentally, and in gear and equipment. Climbers should prepare with their gear and equipment, clothing, professional guides, oxygen supplements, medical prescriptions, and first-aid kits. On top of that, they need technical climbing skills to conquer Mount Everest.
What famous body was found on Everest?
Francys Arsentiev is also known as The Sleeping Beauty of Everest. She is one of the popular climbers who died on the verge of climbing the highest peak in the world. She and her husband, Sergei Arsentiev was on a mission to conquer Everest without oxygen in May 1998; however, they never returned to the camp. She died on May 24, 1998, while descending after successfully climbing the peak without any oxygen supply.
Francys, a native of Hawaii, Honolulu, was fond of mountaineering, which led her to explore the Himalayas of Nepal. She climbed several peaks, including Annapurna, Peak Goodwill, Denali’s West Buttress, and Elbrus.
On May 17, 1998, Francys and her husband started their climb from the North Col. of Everest. They reached 7,700 meters on the next day, May 18. The following day on May 19, they reached 8,200 meters; however, the weather was challenging, and it turned out to be bad for both. They started their climb from Camp 6 on May 20; however, they could not move forward with the heavy snowfall and storm. They returned to Camp 6 before attempting again on May 21. This attempt also went in vain, and the weather went from bad to worse, keeping them in a dangerous zone. On May 22, 1998, Francys Arsentiev and her husband Sergei Arsentiev successfully conquered Mount Everest, but while returning, she froze due to the freezing temperature in Camp 6.
She went unconscious and was found around 100 meters below Camp 6. As per the story, she was frozen and still, which later became her name, The Sleeping Beauty.
She was first discovered unconscious by the Uzbekistan team, who tried to help but could not succeed. Similarly, she was also later found by Cathy O’Dowd and her team; however, everything they did to help did not work out. Eventually, Francys was left behind until her death. Her body was later rescued by Cathy O’Dowd and her husband, Ian Woodall, in 2007 – they gave her a proper burial. They covered her body with the American national flag, which still is in the Everest region.
Green Boots – Tsewang Paljor
Green Boots, aka Tsewang Paljor, was an Indian climber who lost his life on Mount Everest in 1996. He was from the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir called Ladakh. So mountaineering was not a strange thing for him. After completing his 10th grade, he dropped out of school and joined the Indo-Tibetan Border Police.
Green Boots – Tsewang Paljor went on an expedition mission from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police, which turned out to be tragic. They successfully conquered the mountain and made their descent to the lower camp. However, it was reported that Tsewang Pajor, Subedar Tsewang Smanla, and Lance Naik Dorje Morup were caught in a blizzard. They died on the way.
The body of Tsewang Paljor remains in the Everest Zone at 8,500 meters, and the mountaineers consider it a trail marker. Mountaineers who climb Everest from the North side will pass across the dead body of Tsewang Paljor.
Scott Fischer was a renowned American mountaineer who had a trailblazing climbing career in his life. Despite climbing strenuous mountains like K2, he died on May 11, 1996, on Everest.
Scott was part of the expedition team led by Rob Hall, who also died during the same climb. Fischer started his climbing journey on May 10 from the South Col. Ridge. However, he and his team encountered several issues, including weather conditions, malfunctioning oxygen regulators, etc. Sirdar Lopsung was the one who accompanied Fisher during the climb; however, he was unable to move any forward.
Reports suggest that Fischer began to show signs of severe altitude sickness and exhaustion. Despite the efforts of his fellow climbers and Sherpa guides, Fischer’s condition worsened, and he eventually collapsed and died at an elevation of approximately 8,300 meters (27,230 feet). He told his guide, Lopsung, to descend to the camp without him. Lopsung, hoping to find help for Fisher, left him behind and descended; however, Fisher had already lost his life.
His body was discovered on May 11, around 7:00 am, but the rescue team could not rescue his body back to the camp. Instead, they laid him on a cliff with a bag attached to his face and collected his pin knife, ice ax, and camera, which he later handed to his kids.
George Mallory was one of the earliest climbers who died on Everest. His body was found years after he died. His name is the closest to the highest peak, as he was the first man to explore the mountain in history.
George Mallory went on the Mount Everest Expedition two times in 1921. There were several maps and routes to Everest; however, he did not reach the top of the mountain. George Mallory and his team were the first to go through the Western Cirque below the Lhotse Face for the summit.
Mallory attempted Everest climb once again in 1924; however, he has never seen again alive. He was last seen on June 8 while leaving Camp IV. He was missing for decades until the expedition team found his body in 1999. It is still unknown whether he conquered the summit of Mount Everest or not.
The main cause of his demise during the Everest summit was weather conditions. Mallory knew that monsoon was approaching and was the only chance to conquer in 1924. George Mallory and partner Andrew “Sandy” Irving started their journey on June 8. They progressed from the Western Cirque and were spotted in Camp IV. After that, they went missing for decades until their body was discovered in 1999.
David Sharp was an English professional mountaineer who died on May 15, 2006, while attempting to conquer Mount Everest. It was Sharp’s third attempt at Everest; he had already tried his summit twice. Besides, he had already scaled up several other peaks like Elbrus and Kilimanjaro, the tallest peaks in Europe and Africa.
David Sharp’s death was one of the most notable, as nearly 40 other climbers witnessed his death. On the third attempt, Sharp initiated his climb without any oxygen supplements. Though other crew suggested he takes the oxygen supplement, citing that the journey would be tiresome without it. However, he was determined to climb without the supply.
He started climbing the peak on May 13, 2006. Several other climbers mentioned seeing him climbing the mountain throughout the day. But no one knew if he successfully climbed the peak on that day. Later, his body was seen in the Green Boots, the limestone cave considered dangerous during the Everest climb. His body remained in the cave for around a year, but it does not remain there now. His family urged to remove his body from the cave, so the Sherpas took his body out of this treacherous cave and gave him a proper burial in the mountain.
Hannelore Schmatz is the first woman and the German mountaineer to die on Everest. Since she loved climbing from a young age, she had already marked her notable expeditions in Manaslu, 26,781 feet (the 13th highest peak in the world) and 8,516 meters (the fourth highest peak in the world).
Everest was the most anticipated climb for Hannelore Schmatz and her husband, Gerhard Schmatz. They had waited long for the climbing permits to Everest, which they eventually got in 1979. The duo climbed the peak successfully; however, the descent did not go as expected, costing her life.
Hannelore, her husband, and their expedition team first hiked at 24,606 feet (The Yellow Band). From there, they passed the Geneva Spur and reached the South Col, below Lhotse face at 26,200 feet above sea level. They remained at a camp on September 24, 1979. During the climb, the blizzard forced them to descend back to Camp III. Also, they got divided into two groups, Hannelore, other climbers, and two sherpas in one and her husband with the others in the next group.
Hannelore’s husband, Gerhard, and his group reached South Col. once again while Hannelore’s group was still on the verge of returning to South Col. Gerhard went on to the summit of Everest and became the oldest person to climb the peak – he was 50.
Hannelore also conquered the peak and became the fourth woman to conquer it. However, during the descent, the journey is riddled with danger. According to other climbers, Hannelore and their group leader, Genet, were already exhausted to continue her descent and planned to set up the bivouac camp to make their stay. Sherpas warned them as they were in the middle of The Death Zone. Genet died from hypothermia during the journey, which shook the team.
Hannelore also could not make a step forward and scrambled with difficulty. Sherpas cited that her last words were ‘Water, water.’ She took her last breath as she rested against her backpack.
Shriya Shah-Klorfine was part of 2012’s tragic mishap on Everest. She was one of the twelve climbers who lost their life while descending from the peak – the accident was hence considered the deadliest since the 1996 disaster.
Things did not go as expected when Shriya descended from Everest’s summit. She suffered from exhaustion, which became the reason for her death. The weather condition went wrong, complicated by cold and windy conditions. The main thing was she was climbing for around 17 hours straight to reach the summit of Everest, which drained her energy and stamina. And the next thing was the Everest region was overcrowded while she was on the verge of climbing around The Death Zone, aka The Rainbow Valley.
According to the Sherpas, she was suffering from altitude sickness after a long exposure to the high altitude. She collapsed after she reached the lower camps on May 19, 2012.
Climbing Everest was Shriya’s long-lived dream, and it intermingled with her patriotism. On her website, she mentioned that she wanted to do something for her country. Further, she wrote, ‘Nothing is impossible in this world, even the word ’impossible’ says ’I M POSSIBLE’!’
Later, her body was recovered from Everest by the rescue helicopter and handed to her family in Kathmandu, Nepal. The rescue team rescued her dead body from over 8,000 meters above sea level to a camp within a helicopter rescue range and then to the capital city of Nepal.
Shriya Shah-Klorfine was born in Kathmandu, Nepal, grew up in Mumbai, India, and moved to Canada with her husband. After that, she handled the SOS Splash of Style Inc import business with her family. She was also part of the Conservative Party of Canada.
Rescue from Everest in Nepal
The rescue mission was set in Nepal from the earliest day of the expeditions. Since the country opened its border for the mountaineers to climb the mountain, there is provision of a rescue team with a mission to help the stranded people in the Himalayas of Nepal. When it comes to the Everest expedition, the rescue team standoff with high alerts
Several operators in Nepal provide a helicopter rescue service from the Everest region. They operate their services from several points in the Everest region, such as Kala Patthar, Gokyo Ri, Machchhermo, Lobuche, Gorakshep, Pheriche, Namche Bazaar, Phakding, and others.
Challenges of Rescue From Everest
Rescuing from Everest can be a challenging thing to do. Since the Everest region is a hazardous area for human life with fewer oxygen levels, high altitude, and freezing temperatures, the rescue mission is challenging to operate. A safe and sound rescue mission requires special skills, experience, and equipment. There are several histories of successful rescue missions held from Everest, including from the devastating earthquake in 2015. So what are the main challenges of rescue from Everest? Let’s explore!
High altitude: Everest’s towering altitude is the rescue mission’s main challenge. The altitude of Everest is 29,029 feet above sea level, and it poses a significant challenge for both human and helicopter rescue. The air is thin at the base camp or at Everest’s elevation, directly affecting the helicopter’s performance. Similarly, it might be very difficult for people to work in a treacherous climate.
The rescuers should have specialized training at high altitudes and be aware of the effects of altitude sickness on themselves and their passengers.
Extreme weather conditions: The weather condition of Everest is unpredictable, which pose not only challenges for mountaineering but also for a rescue mission. The weather can change quickly and without any warnings. Rescuers must be prepared to work in extreme temperatures, storms, and heavy snowfall.
Bad weather also causes visibility issues, which can pose an issue for the helicopter pilots to fly the rescue helicopter to the region. Overall, bad weather condition makes it hard to navigate the mountainous terrain.
Limited landing sites for Helicopters: Since Everest features sharp ridges and sloppy and steep landscapes, there are few suitable places for rescue helicopters to land. That’s why the pilots should be well-acknowledged with the land topography of the Everest region. They need to identify safe landing spots while planning for a rescue mission. The landing area must be large enough to accommodate the helicopter and allow safe takeoff.
Cost: The rescue from Everest can be expensive – especially the helicopter rescue takes a lot of expenses. Since the Everest region is a remote location, the cost of the operation comes to be expensive. The cost includes the helicopter, fuel, pilot’s fee, rescue team’s fee, and medical expenses. Similarly, trekking agencies also do not cover the rescue and evacuation cost, so it might be challenging to take out the helicopter rescue from Everest.