The death of a Sherpa in the Himalayas and the debate on ethics in the mountains | Sports

Pakistani Mohammed Hassan died at the end of July after running out of oxygen on K2 in the Himalayas at more than 8,000 meters above sea level. In a video that has gone viral on social networks, you can see how the body of this local guide was lying on the mountain while the rest of the climbers advanced next to him without helping him and without even noticing his presence. Some even ran over him. According to several local media, Hassan could have been on the ground for up to three hours while they estimate around 130 climbers passed by him.

In the images of the incident a familiar face appears, that of the Norwegian mountaineer Kristin Harila. She passed her team past Hassan and, hours later, she set a new world record by ascending the 14 ochomiles of the planet in just three months and one day. After her deed, she held a party that has generated outrage for coinciding with the death of the Pakistani sherpa that they did not attend.

The situation has fueled the debate on ethics in the mountains. Are records or empathy more important when a life is at stake? The Norwegian mountaineer defended herself against the accusations in statements to The Telegraph: “My team did everything possible to save Hassan, but the conditions were too dangerous to move him. We tried to get him up for an hour and a half and my camera stayed another hour to take care of him. At no time was he left alone. Given the conditions, it’s hard to imagine how he could have saved himself. He fell into the most dangerous part of the mountain due to the narrowness of the path and the bad snow conditions”.

The mountaineer Carlos Soria said on Antena 3 that the actions of Harila and his team cannot be judged lightly. “At 8,000 meters no one is qualified, or very difficult, to lift a corpse,” he remarked.

Fellowship and solidarity are classic mountaineering values, although Everest or K2 are already far from that concept. There are fewer and fewer mountain enthusiasts and more people with great purchasing power who seek to live the experience of their lives there. “I hope this helps convey to the general public that this type of predatory and dehumanized mountain tourism is just business. Let’s respect people like Hassan”, the writer and mountaineer Sebastián Álvaro settled on his Twitter account.

Kristin Harila herself, who has never declared herself an elite mountaineer, is one more example of the times in sport, where the record is sought no matter how and the authentic is left in the dark in the face of feats that are only in the dark. the form, but not the substance.

Traffic jams and overcrowding: from Everest to K2

By the end of May, authorities had already collected 13 tonnes of rubbish from Everest and the nearby Lhotse peak as part of a campaign to keep the ranges clean. However, the climbers continue to denounce that numerous groups of tourists who go up with travel organizing companies do not collect their waste. Mountaineering generates great income in Nepal, this year between March and May a record number of permits to climb Everest were delivered: 478 procedures, worth more than 10,200 euros each.

The queues that used to be seen on the highest mountain in the world have been a constant since last summer, also on the second. The history of K2 was altered when a team of 10 Nepalese signed their first winter ascent, in January 2021. Then, the teams of Nirmal Purja and Mingma G joined forces: they were not just looking for a place in the history of Himalayanism, they but an expansion of your business. On his social media, Nirmal Purja, the man who wowed the parish by climbing the globe’s 14 eight-thousanders in a little over six months, puffs up his chest when he places several of his clients on the top on the same day. The business continues, although in such a rough terrain, it is obvious that not everyone fits.

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