Everest: Weather Questions

8000ers Everest
Climbers up the Khumbu icefall, towards camps 1 and 2 on Everest. Photo: @bhill117 / Climbing The Seven Summits

About 100 climbers remain on Everest with only one goal in mind: to reach the summit. The only news they want from the outside world for the next few days are weather forecasts. Unfortunately, nothing is certain.

A number of teams, mainly with European and American outfitters, are on the move toward the summit. Nepali operators have decided to wait for a better window closer.

These different approaches could be based on disagreements between forecasts, Michael Fagin of WestCoastWeather told ExplorersWeb:

“Some forecast models (not the ones I focus on) show reasonable summit winds and little snowfall from May 18 to May 20. Perhaps these models are not factoring in the cyclone. With the cyclone in play, there is some uncertainly about winds and snowfall. Some models call for moderate snowfall and gusty summit winds at times between May 18 and May 20. These forecast differences might be why some teams are climbing now while others wait at Base Camp for a better window, hopefully toward the end of May.”

Seven Summit Treks believes that there will be no window until May 26, but that good weather should then continue through May 29. Cryptically, Nirmal Purja posted a chant extolling the virtues of patience.

The Madison Mountaineering climbers are at Camp 2 but they are not yet ready to proceed farther. They are reassessing the situation daily. Currently, they are considering whether to spend a second night there and enjoy the relative comfort of the flat, wind-sheltered area before heading out on their final summit push. SummitClimb and Alex Abramov’s team joined them at 6,400m.

Mountain Professionals set off from Base Camp yesterday. Several teams from Climbing the Seven Summits left Base Camp today and their “Western-guided team” will follow soon.

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About the Author

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides

Senior journalist, published author and communication consultant. Specialized on high-altitude mountaineering, with an interest for everything around the mountains: from economics to geopolitics. After five years exploring distant professional ranges, I returned to ExWeb BC in 2018. Feeling right at home since then!

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Don Paul
Don Paul
2 months ago

During the K2 Winter ascent, the Nepalis had a different forecast from the one Snorri’s team used, which is why they had different strategies. I think it was Nims with the inside info on the weather.

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Max Madera
Max Madera
2 months ago
Reply to  Don Paul

Why the downvote?

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Sanjeev Shrestha
Sanjeev Shrestha
2 months ago

Ya, model uncertainties always exist, if you put garbage in you will get garbage out from the black box, it’s the consequence and frequency of occurrence,..with some confident level.

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Paul
Paul
2 months ago

Looks like the weather window after 26th May will be with will less wind but with lots of snowfall, not good too. Maybe it is the end of season already.

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