Mt. Everest is the highest peak in the world nestling at the border of Nepal and Tibet and elevating at 29,029 ft. above sea level. Every year, thousands of people attempt to summit the mountain from both sides but only a few are able to get to the top. The harsh weather conditions characterized by avalanches and winter storms make it difficult for most people to ascend to the peak. The best time for the climb is between April and May and a few weeks in September immediately after the monsoons. People from all over the world and from different age cohorts have attempted to summit the Everest since 1953 when it was discovered. Below is a list of the oldest people (above 70) who made successful ascents to the Everest.
Yuichiro Miura, 80 years
On May 13, 2013, Yuichiro Miura completed the second climb to the Everest at the age 80, becoming the oldest man summit the world’s highest peak. Due to the difficulty of the climb, it took him 224 days to complete the ascent before being airlifted for the descent due to health complications. His first successful attempt of the climb was in 2003 when he summited the mountain at the age of 70. Yuichiro also became the first person to ski on Mount Everest by making a descent nearly 4,200 ft. from the South Col May 6, 1970. Yuichiro was introduced to winter sports by his father, Keizo Miura a, renown Japanese skier hence his passion for mountain climbing and skiing. He plans to defend his title by summiting the Everest once again at the age of 90.
Min Bahadur Sherchan, 76 years
Bahadur Sherchan was the second oldest person to summit the Everest in 2008 at the age of 76. He held a title for being the oldest person to complete the summit but lost the 5-year title to 80-year-old Yuichiro Miura in 2013. Bahadur was a Nepalese mountaineer and a former soldier of the British Gurkha army. In May 2017, Bahadur attempted to reclaim his title at the age of 86 but succumbed to a heart attack at the Everest Base Camp.
Tamae Watanabe, 73 years
On May 19, 2012, Tamae became the oldest female to summit the Everest at the age of 73. In 2002, Tamae had made her first successful ascent to the Everest at the age of 63, a title she holds up to date. Tamae, a retired office laborer resides at the foot of Mt. Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan. She has ascended 14 of the world’s highest peaks above 26,246 feet including Mount McKinley in Alaska, the Eiger in Switzerland and Lhotse in Nepal.
Bill Burke, 72 years
Bill Burke became the oldest non-Asian to summit the Everest in 2014 at the age of 72. Burke, a US citizen summited the Everest from the Nepal side and Tibet side. In honor of his great contribution to mountaineering in Nepal, the Government of Nepal named one of the peaks in the country Mount Burke Khang in May 2014. Burke settled in Nepal and continues training and leading teams to summit the Burke Khang.
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