Sherpa Risks Life To Save Climber From Mt. Everest’s “Death Zone”

Climbing Mt. Everest is a dream for mountaineers, but it’s something few people can boast in their lifetimes. It’s incredibly expensive and also dangerous, as you can tell by the hundreds of bodies that litter the mountain.

This year, Mt. Everest claimed one less body thanks to Gelje Sherpa, the co-founder of AGA Adventures.

It all started when Malaysian climber Ravi Gecm attempted to climb Mt. Everest for the third time in his life.

According to Free Malaysia Today, Gecm previously climbed Mt. Everest in 2006 and 2007. During that time, he lost eight of his fingers to frostbite, but he didn’t let that slow him down.

Photo: Flickr/Göran Höglund (Kartläsarn) License: CC BY 2.0

Despite being an experienced mountaineer who knows the dangers and realities of summiting Mt. Everest, Gecm decided to attempt the climb without oxygen. Of the thousands of successful summits of Mt. Everest, only around 200 people have done it without oxygen, and attempting it has claimed hundreds of lives. Not even experienced Sherpas whose bodies adapt to low oxygen do the climb without, but Gecm wanted to push his limits.

Unfortunately, that didn’t work out for him and he was in the notorious “death zone” of Mt. Everest when he started to struggle. Thankfully, Gelje Sherpa noticed him and stepped up to save his life.

Gelje took to Instagram to share about the rescue. He said, “You may all be wondering where is the summit photo? Unfortunately no summit yet.”

Photo: Instagram/@gelje_sherpa_

“At the Balcony during our summit push around 8,300m I saw someone in danger. A man who needed rescuing and no one else was helping. I made the decision to cancel our clients summit push so that I could bring him down to safety before he died up there alone,” Gelje explained.

He said, “I carried him myself all the way down to Camp 4 where a rescue team helped from then on. I will be back up the mountain soon after regaining energy from a huge task but I am so happy to say he is alive and recovering in hospital.”

Gecm received a lot of backlash following the rescue for not publicly thanking Gelje for saving his life. In fact, Gecm took to Instagram to credit other people for saving him, and even blocked Gelje from his account. However, after receiving an overwhelming amount of criticism on social media, Gecm unblocked Gelje and issued a thanks to him.

At the end of the day, Gelje cared about saving a life, and he cared so much that he even risked his own life to carry a man down one of the most dangerous parts of the mountain.

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