Over 4,000 climbers have stood on top of Mount Everest and many others have lied about it. Starting this spring, the Nepalese government will be testing out a new system to bust fakes summit claims, every climber will be given a GPS device.
In 2016, husband and wife team Dinesh and Tarakeshwari Rathod faked their summit by photo-shopping their images. Climbers who were on the summit on the day the Rathod’s claimed to make it were quick to point out that the Rathod’s were not standing on the world’s highest point. For two years, Everest saw few ascents due to avalanches and earthquakes. The GPS devices will also be collecting data on mountain conditions.
Ueli Steck will be returning to Everest this spring to traverse it and Lhotse with Tenji Sherpa, who he climbed Everest with in 2012 without bottled oxygen. In spring 2013, Steck had a negative encounter with Sherpas while on Everest with Italian Simone Moro and the Briton Jonathan Griffith.
“I will never forget what happened on Everest in 2013,” Steck said to Stefan Nestler in this interview. “But I believe I will have absolutely no problem with it. It’s over. I’m very motivated and I’ll go with a very good feeling.”
Nestler asked Steck, “The Everest-Lhotse traverse has never been achieved without the use of supplemental oxygen. How high do you assess the chance of success?” And Steck responded, “There must something be going quite wrong, so that the traverse via the normal route turns out to be impossible. But we’ve seen it last year on Shishapangma: If the weather doesn’t fit, you have just no chance. You never know beforehand how high the chance really is. But I believe I am able to succeed.”