By: Gyang Dakwo
Nepali climber Kami Rita Sherpa scaled Mount Everest for the 27th time on Wednesday.
It means he has reclaimed his own world record for the most summits of the world’s highest peak.
The 53-year-old has been working as a guide for over two decades. Growing up he watched his father and brother don the climbing gear to join expeditions as mountain guides.
He climbed Everest for the first time in 1994 while working on a commercial expedition.
Dubbed the “Everest man,” he scaled the peak almost every year since then, except in 2014, 2015, and 2020 when climbing was halted for various reasons.
In 2019, Rita reached the summit twice in a span of six days.
He first broke the world record in 2018 when he ascended Everest for the 22nd time.
“These records were made not with an intention to make them but during my work as a guide,” Rita said as he headed to base camp.
Earlier on Wednesday, British mountain guide Kenton Cool reached the peak for the 17th time and extended his own record for the most summits by a non-Nepali.
The 49-year-old climbed the mountain for the first time in 2004 and his 16th climb last year gave him the record for most summits by a foreigner.
He said that he was “surprised” by the attention.
“In reality, it’s not that amazing,” he said, pointing out that many sherpa guides had stood on the peak more often than him.
Nepal is home to eight of the world’s 10 highest peaks and welcomes hundreds of adventurers each spring.
Climbing contributed $5.8 million (€ 5.3 million) to state coffers in 2023 — $5 million of which comes from Mount Everest alone, according to government data.
This year, authorities issued 478 permits to foreign climbers, the most ever, for people to climb Everest.