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More ropes to ease jam on Everest

Reuters

Nepalese climbing specialists will fix a second rope at the Hillary Step, a dangerous bottleneck near the Mount Everest summit, to ease congestion on the world’s highest mountain.

Hundreds of climbers from around the world attempt to scale the 8,850-meter (29,035-feet) Everest summit every year, but a 40-foot (12-meter) wall of rock at about 8,790 meters (28,840 feet) often causes major problems, a hiking group said Thursday. Exhausted climbers have been forced to wait there for several hours, awaiting their turn to climb up or come down a single rope, exposed to risks of thin air in what is known as the “death zone.”

Separate ropes will be fixed also at obstacles like the Geneva Spur, Yellow Band and Balcony to ease the congestion. Nepal says it will post army and police at the Everest base camp after a brawl last year between European mountaineers and local sherpas over rope-fixing.