Japanese climber Nobukazu Kuriki has said he will attempt to climb Mount Everest again next autumn without oxygen, after abandoning this year’s attempt to climb the mountain where he earlier lost nine fingers to frostbite.
“I will be attempting to climb again alone next year,” the 33-year-old climber told a press conference in Kathmandu following his most recent attempt at the peak.
Kuriki’s attempt was the only one of the season, after earthquakes in April killed nearly 9,000 people, around 20 of them on the slopes of Everest. His bid was seen as a boost to restore tourism and mountaineering in Nepal.
“I will keep coming back because I love the quiet of the mountain,” Kuriki said.
“Tha’s why too, I want to climb in the autumn season when there are not many climbers on the trail,” as the weather is harsher than during the spring window for climing the world’s highest peak, he said.
Ang Tshering Sherpa, the president of Nepal Mountaineering Association, said the weather was against Kuriki. “The wind speed is high in autumn, especially in October,” he said.
But the aborted ascent was still a success, he said, “because of the message it has sent out to the world about climbing safety in Nepal.”
Kuriki said that he decided to turn back when it appeared that it would be better to try again later than risk his life.
The mountaineer has attempted the peak four times, once from the Chinese side in Tibet.
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