No-O2 Everest Climb; Snow Stalls Manaslu and Annapurna

Bad weather has shut down mountaineering in Nepal since last weekend. The sun returned today to some 8,000m base camps, but climbers need to wait a few days for the new snow to sluff off.

Meanwhile, this spring’s first no-O2 attempt on Everest has been announced.

Everest ramps up

Sherpas walk among seracs, carring aluminium ladders on their backs and rolls of rope.

Sherpas walk among seracs, carring aluminium ladders on their backs and rolls of rope.

Icefall Doctors at work this week. Photo: Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee


The first teams are approaching to Everest Base Camp, while the Icefall Doctors have made good progress fixing the route to Camp 1.

Currently at home in Hungary, Suhajda Szilard said today that he will climb Everest without supplementary oxygen or personal Sherpa support.

The climber in white shirt embroided with sponsors' logos poses in front of a black banner.

Suhajda Szilard unveils his Everest expedition today. Photo: Suhajda Szilard/Facebook


“My long-term plan is called The Big Five project and consists of climbing the five highest mountains by fair means, that is, without O2 or high-altitude porters,” Suhajda told ExplorersWeb some weeks ago.

That is how he climbed K2 in 2019 and Lhotse last year. He hired base camp logistics (and the use of the ropes) but otherwise climbed independently. He also attempted Dhaulagiri in 2021 with David Klein.

Naila Kiani of Pakistan will try to make Everest and Lhotse her fourth and fifth 8,000’ers after K2 and the Gasherbrums last year. Details to follow.

Snow-loaded Manaslu

On Manaslu, the team led by Gelje Sherpa took advantage of the sunshine yesterday to check the state of Camp 1. They dared not to venture beyond because of the fresh snow and avalanche hazard amid the seracs en route to Camp 2. The team posted some photos and videos showing them up to their waist in fresh snow.

Gelje Sherpa, Adriana Brownlee, and Kristin Harila, plus photographer Mathias Myklebust, are climbing supported by Lakpa T. Sherpa, Pemba Tashi, Pasang Nurbu, Tenjin Sherpa, and Dawa Shrewa, the Alpymon blog noted.

A score to settle

Harila wants to repeat her 14×8,000’ers-in-six-month challenge, while Brownlee (and Gelje) are visiting Manaslu together for the third time.

“The first year [fall 2019], I got to the foresummit among a team that had a few [members] that made it to the real summit,” said Brownlee. “It was quite the bummer and hence I am here again today.”

On their second attempt last fall, dangerous conditions forced them (and nearly everyone else on the mountain) away. Brownlee notes that “overcrowding leading to many accidents” was the main reason they retreated.

Brownlee smiles to the camera with sunglasses, a black cap and an energetic drink in her hand, with a snowy mountain background.

Adriana Brownlee. Photo: Instagram


Conditions are similar — or worse since there has been no sun — on Annapurna. Yet Sajid Sadpara of Pakistan is in Camp 1, hoping to reach Camp 2 “and beyond” tomorrow, he says. He’s currently acclimatizing. As usual, Sadpara climbs without bottled oxygen or personal Sherpa support.

Sajid smiles to the camera from inside a small, pink tent with the gate half open.

Sajid Sadpara in his tiny tent at Annapurna’s Camp 1. Photo: Sajid Sadpara/Twitter


Other peaks

Eneko and Iker Pou of Spain will join Andres Marin (U.S.-Colombia) and Fay Manners of the UK to attempt a new route on a Nepalese peak. They have not yet revealed which one. The four met in Chamonix for some preparatory climbs together. The Pou brothers specialize in trad and big-wall rock climbing, and they wanted to get ice and snow conditions similar to the ones they may expect to find in the Himalaya.

A final note about the two-member U.S. team with a climbing permit for Surma Sarovar North. Sources told ExplorersWeb that in the end, the climb didn’t take place, and the climbers returned home.

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.