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Climbing Season In Nepal At Risk Of Being Cancelled

Kenton Cool, a British climber who has scaled Mt Everest 11 times, told BuzzFeed News on Tuesday that he finds it "immoral" that climbers are still planning to tackle Mount Everest this season when Nepal has been hit by such a tragedy.

Last updated on May 5, 2015, at 8:53 a.m. ET

Posted on May 5, 2015, at 8:53 a.m. ET

Nima Namgyal Sherpa / AP

Sherpas in Nepal are refusing to rebuild the Mt. Everest route destroyed by the avalanche which was triggered by the devastating earthquake over a week ago.

The sherpas, who play a crucial role in helping climbers to reach the mountain's summit, notified Nepal's Mountaineering Department on Monday and said that conditions are not right for the route to be rebuilt, the Associated Press reported.

The April 25 avalanche killed 18 people at a Mt Everest base camp. Many of those killed were foreign climbers who were preparing to scale the world's highest mountain.

This would be the second consecutive year where climbing on Mt. Everest has been canceled. Last year, climbing season was called off when an avalanche killed 16 Nepalese sherpas.

This news hasn't deterred all climbers. Some are still planning to make the climb this season -- hoping to convince sherpas to come along, while others in the climbing community are respecting the sherpas' decision.

Kenton Cool is a British mountaineer who has climbed Everest 11 times. Speaking to BuzzFeed News on Tuesday Cool said he finds the fact that climbers are still trying to convince sherpas to scale the mountain "immoral."

"Mountaineering is the last thing on the sherpas' mind," Cool said. "They have lost their homes and family in this tragedy. I can't believe people are asking them to go in, it's immoral."

There are very few climbers around today who could climb Mt Everest without the assistance of a sherpa. In addition to carrying the equipment and clearing the trails, sherpas provide invaluable experience and local knowledge that western climbers just don't have, according to Cool.

Still, some of those who succeed on Mt Everest don't seem to give enough credit to the roles the sherpas play, as pointed out by Cool.

"They get handsomely rewarded financially, but if you go to any climbing speaking event or read a climbing book, sherpas get very few mentions."

The death toll from the April 25 earthquake currently stands at over 7,000 people, with an additional 14,000 injured.

The magnitude 7.8 quake was the strongest to hit Nepal in almost a century.

  • Picture of Felipe Araujo

    Felipe Araujo is the overnight homepage editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

    Contact Felipe Araujo at None.

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