www.explorersweb.com [everest] [K2] [oceans] [poles] [space] [tech] [weather] [statistics] [medical] [SPANISH] Some text
www.mounteverest.net

Makalu West Pillar: Sudden death of a Sherpa in BC
image story



May 16, 2005 09: 43 EST
Sumbu Sherpa, working for the Spanish “Al Filo” team, passed away yesterday in Makalu West’s BC (5400m). Sumbu was a kitchen helper and never intended to climb higher than BC; he suddenly felt sick yesterday and died in a few hours. The expedition’s doctor, Santiago Villanueva, did everything he could to save his life (including using emergency O2 and a gammow bag), but he wasn’t able to save Sumbu.

Cause of death uncertain

The symptoms indicate that pulmonary edema was the cause of death. However, everything happened so fast that a heart attack has not been ruled out. Sumbu was a highly experienced worker; he had participated in many expeditions before and never had problems with altitude. Sumbu reached BC one month ago and, until yesterday, showed no signs of illness.

The ‘Al Filo’ team is experiencing tragedy for the second time on Makalu’s West Pillar. During a previous expedition in 2002, six Sherpas died when the helicopter they were in crashed on the return flight from the mountain. Both the helicoper crew members died as well.

8485 meters high, Makalu is the fifth highest mountain on Earth. Its name means ‘The Great Black’. It is a four-faced pyramid, with a secondary peak - Chomo Lonzo or Makalu II (25,650 ft/7818 m) - separated from the main summit by a narrow saddle, known as Makalu La.

It was first climbed by a French team led by Jean Franco on May 15, 1955.

Makalu’s West Pillar was first climbed in 1971 by a French team led by Paragot. The West Pillar is a steep, 2000m long buttress that poses serious problems for Himalayan climbers. The climb includes highly rigorous sections, including a vertical wall known as the ‘Seigneur Wall’.

The Al Filo de lo Imposible team members are: Sebastian Alvaro (leader), Antonio Perez/Grueso, Ferrán Latorre, Eloi Callado, Alex Txicon, and Manuel Benito.

The GMAM team members are: Commander Alberto Ayora (leader), Commander Dr. Santiago Villanueva, Captain Fausto Blanco, Lieutenant Fermín Peñarroya, Brigadier Felix Criado, and Officer Francisco Borja.

Image of Makalu courtesy of Carlos Pauner.

Feature Stories Latest News more news
story images Everest Supercouloir: "What is a summit compared to a friend's lif
Full Story
story images Mystery Chopper's Utopia summit - VIDEO
Full Story
story images Annapurna South: "It was such a great climb"
Full Story
story images ExWeb Special report: The Ropes and Summit Push on Everest...
Full Story
story images Real men
Full Story
story images Christian Kuntner - a mountaineering legend is gone
Full Story
story images 14 x 8000: Ed Viesturs joins the world's most exclusive...
Full Story
story images ExWeb Special: Ed Viesturs "I still have peaks that I want...
Full Story




2004 BEST of EXPLORERSWEB
 
 
1. Magic Line   
K2
2. Russian Jannu Exp.   
Jannu North Face
3. Over Everest - Richard
      Over Everest - Angelo   
Everest Ultra light
4. Dominick Arduin   
North Pole
5. Spaceship One   
Space
6. Central North Wall   
Mount Everest
7. Russian Extreme Pr.    
Amin Brakk BASE jump
8. Fiona & Rosie    
South Pole

Special mention:

Edurne Pasaban
Juanito Oiarzabal
K2

Henk De Velde
North West Passage

Pavel Rezvoy
Atlantic

Nawang Sherpa
Everest

The Spirit of Adventure

Mount Everest Expeditions  •  Mount Everest Technology  •  Mount Everest Weather  •  Mount Everest Medical  •  Mount Everest Guide  •  Mount Everest News  Mount Everest Video  •  Mount Everest Trekking Agencies  •  Mount Everest Climbing Permits#8226;  Mount Everest Statistics  •  Mount Everest Expedition List  •  Mount Everest Resources  •  Mount Everest Community