A Nepali woman climber today broke her own world record by scaling Mt Everest for the ninth time.
Kami Rita, 48, comes from a long line of mountain climbers and first scaled Everest at age 24. Ani Lhakpa Sherpa summited from the North and the 44-year-old has now set a new female record, beating the record she set a year ago.
"Kami Rita Sherpa reached the summit this morning at around 8:30 a.m. local time along with other climbers", Gyanendra Shrestha, an official at the Department of Tourism under the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, told Xinhua via telephone from the base camp.
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Lhakpa, who climbed from the Tibetan side of the mountain, was accompanied by a guide during the ascent, said Rajiv Shrestha of the Seven Summit Club that organized her expedition. Most of his male relatives have reached the top at least once. Briton Kenton Cool climbed the mountain for the 13th time, becoming the British national with the most ascents of the world's highest peak.
Kami Rita apparently hopes to reach 25 times before retiring. She was making her way down to the advanced base camp, he said.
Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Wednesday flagged off an expedition to Mount Everest at the National Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports (NIMAS) campus at Dirang in West kameng district of the State.
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Dozens of climbers were expected to reach the top on Wednesday, taking advantage of the good weather on the mountain, according to Shrestha.
Nepal has issued 346 permits to mountaineers for this year's spring climbing season, which runs from mid-April to the end of May. In the autumn, he guides clients to smaller peaks in Nepal.
On the Tibet side a team was forced to retreat from just below the summit when 11 of their bottled oxygen systems failed.
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Alpenglow Expeditions said in a statement: "Multiple teams using the same device have experienced similar oxygen system failures". Some 26 climbers had to descend to fix their oxygen regulators.