Himalaya 2013: Death On Makalu

800px Makalu

Earlier today I posted an update from the Himalaya that included a few details on the first summit of the season, but now we’re also receiving word of tragedy on that same climb.

American solo climber Don Bowie is on Makalu as well and is just starting his acclimatization efforts. But he has more details of the summit from a few days back that not only put Iranian alpinist Azim Gheichisaz on top but two other climbers as well. It seems Azim was joined by Mr. Chun Feng-Yang of China and Lapka Dendi Sherpa of Nepal. All three men reached the true summit with Azim doing so without the use of bottled oxygen.

But sadly Don is also reporting that a fourth man set out on that summit push as well and was tragically lost on the descent. Few details are known at this time, but it seems Mr. Xiang Yang-Liu, also of China, fell while coming back down the mountain and perished there.

There are always inherent risks with any mountaineering expedition but that doesn’t make the news of a death in the mountains any easier to take. My condolences to the friends and family of the deceased.

Kraig Becker