Nepali officials stressed the need of age limitation for climbing Everest after 85-year-old Min Bahadur Sherchan died at the mountain’s base camp while trying to regain his title as the oldest person to scale Mount Everest.
The death of Min Bahadur Sherchan has revived concerns about allowing elderly people to attempt scale mountain peaks where the conditions are harsh and oxygen level low.
According to Nepali law, climbers have to be at least 16 years old to climb Everest, but there’s no upper age limit.
Ang Tshering, head of the Nepal Mountaineering Association said, “It is very necessary to immediately bring the law of age limitation for climbing Everest. If there had been a limit, the loss of life could have been prevented.”
“The association is planning to push the government to limit the age of climbers to at least 76”, he said.
The head of Nepal’s Tourism Department, Dinesh Bhattarai said the government is in serious talks about an age limitation for climbing Everest.
Min Bahadur Sherchan died on Saturday evening at the Everest base camp. Earlier in 2011, another Nepali man, Shailendra Kumar Upadhyaya had also died at the age of 82 while attempting to scale Everest.
Sherchan’s body was flown to Kathmandu on Sunday. He died of a heart attack at the base camp on Saturday afternoon, according to NMA.
Sherchan had first scaled Everest in May 2008 when he was 76—at that time, he became the oldest climber to reach the top. But, his record was broken in 2013 by 80-year-old Japanese Yuichiro Miura.
The funeral ceremony was held at the Thakali Service Society premises in Kathmandu. Hundreds of family members, friends and supporters offered flowers and colorful scarfs while Buddhist monks chanted a hymn and burnt sandalwood incense. A government minister and fellow climbers were also among those who paid their respects.
We hope the government will soon place its decision on age restriction for climbing Everest and prevent elderly people from risking their life at the mountain.