Everest Season Closes on International Everest Day

Everest’s 2024 season ended today. All the remaining teams are off the mountain, and the Icefall Doctors have started dismantling the route through the Icefall.

Coincidentally, today marks the 71st International Sagarmatha (Everest) day. It commemorates May 29, 1953, when Tenzin Norgay Sherpa and Edmund Hillary stepped on the highest point on Earth for the first time. Read more about the UK-New Zealand expedition led by John Hunt and the epic ascent here.

Sagarmatha Day was celebrated in Kathmandu, as members of the Sherpa community paraded through the streets. The Ministry of Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation also gave awards to several climbers, guides, and expedition operators.

SHerpe women in traditional attire in Kathmandu

Sherpa women celebrate Sagarmatha Day in Kathmandu. Photo: Nepal Mountaineering Association


A lot has changed since Tenzing and Hillary’s time. Final figures this year are slightly lower than in 2023, but still remarkable: 421 foreigners obtained a climbing permit for Everest. Counting both these foreigners and local climbers (some of whom reached the top more than once), there were around 600 summits. The official final number has not yet been released.

Remembering the victims

The season ends with eight fatalities, including six on Everest itself: Binod Babu Bastakoti, 37, from Nepal; Mongolian climbers Usukhjargal Tsedendamba, 53, and Purevsuren Lkhagvajav, 31; Kenyan climber Joshua Cheruiyot Kirui, 40; Daniel Paul Paterson, 40; Pas Tenji Sherpa, 23, and Nawang Sherpa, 44.

Pastenji Sherpa in black and white

Pas Tenji Sherpa was only 23. He died near the summit when a cornice collapsed under several climbers. Photo: 8K Expeditions


Gabriel Viorel Tabara of Romania, 48, died in Camp 3, although his goal was not Everest but neighboring Lhotse.

Banshi Lal of India became seriously ill on Everest and was evacuated from Camp 2, but died in the hospital two days later.

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides graduated university in journalism and specializes in high-altitude mountaineering and expedition news. She has been writing about climbing and mountaineering, adventure and outdoor sports for 20+ years.

Prior to that, Angela Benavides spent time at/worked at a number of local and international media. She is also experienced in outdoor-sport consultancy for sponsoring corporations, press manager and communication executive, and a published author.