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Everest prepares for summiting

dpadpa 13/05/2016

A total of 289 foreigners and 400 Nepalis are attempting to climb Everest in the 2016 spring season.

Guides have been fixing the ropes to the summit of Mount Everest in preparation for the first climbers to reach the peak since 2013, after disasters canceled all expeditions for two consecutive years.

"Icefall doctors have begun fixing the rope today," Gyanendra Shrestha, a mountaineering official with the Tourism Ministry said from this week.

"The Nepali climbers will have arrived at the summit and the others will follow them," he said by phone.

"Much depends on how favourable the weather will be."

The climbing window for the Everest summit is generally a few days in mid-May when the weather is favourable.

"Summit window May 11? The #Everest2016 is starting to accelerate," tweeted US mountaineer Alan Arnette, who is climbing the world's highest mountain to raise funds for an Alzheimer foundation.

A total of 289 foreigners and 400 Nepalis are attempting to climb Everest in the 2016 spring season. Most have been on the mountain since March, acclimatising for the summit by making trips between the three base camps.

Everest expeditions in 2014 were cancelled after 16 Sherpas died in an icefall avalanche. In 2015, another avalanche triggered by a 7.8-magnitude quake killed 19 mountaineers at the Everest Base Camp, prompting the cancellation of all trips.

In 1953, New Zealander Edmund Hillary and his Nepali guide, Tenzing Norgay climbed the Everest for the first time.

Since then, hundreds of others have climbed the mountain, while hundreds others have died on its slopes.

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