KATHMANDU: Nepal’s octogenarian mountaineer Min Bahadur Sherchan has died at the base camp of Mt Everest on Saturday afternoon.
The 86-year-old former British Gurkha who aimed at reclaiming the crown of oldest climber to ascend the world’s highest mountain died at 5:14 pm, multiple sources at the Everest base camp confirmed.
Born in June 1931 in Myagdi district of western Nepal, Sherchan had stood atop the Mt Everest in 2008 at the age of 76 years.
Five years later, Japanese mountaineer Yuichiro Miura snatched the title of oldest Everest summiteer from Sherchan as the senior citizen summited the peak when he was 80.
Last week famed Swiss climber Ueli Steck had lost his life in an accident in the Mt Everest region.
This is the second official death of climbers on Mt Everest this season.
Gyanendra Sherestha, a liaison officer deployed by the Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation at the base camp, also confirmed Sherchan’s death.
Sherchan had set off for the Everest expedition, which he said would be an inspiration to the humankind.
“I am okay and doing very well here to achieve the goal,” Sherchan told THT Online over mobile telephone from the base camp yesterday morning.
The cause of his death is yet to be revealed.
But his support staff Shiva Bahadur Sapkota said the veteran felt quite comfortable while traversing through the icefall section during the acclimatisation process.
“He always stood dedicated and committed to the world peace and humanity,” Sapkota recalled.
Sherchan had started his mountaineering career by successfully climbing Mt Dhaulagiri in 1960.
(Updated at 7 pm)