Monday, 3 June 2019

First Woman climber from Odisha state died on Mt. Everest in this season (2019)

Mrs. Kalpana Das sportslogon.com
Above image:  Kalpana Das (7 July 1966 - 23 May 2019) was an Indian lawyer and mountaineer. She was the first Odia mountaineer to scale Mount Everest. She scaled Mount Everest on 21 May 2008, along with a team of five members from the United States, Canada and Nepal and became the first Odia woman to achieve this feat. Earlier  once in 2004 and once in 2006, she had attempted to climb Mount, but gave it up due to bad weather and health conditions. About her maiden success she said, "It is due to God’s mercy and the best wishes of my family that I was able to scale Everest and returned safely. I’m happy and am keen to attempt climbing it again''. She died on the lap of the Mt.  Everest on 23rd May this year .................................................... 

In this year's climbing season, the death  of climbers on Mt. Everest  has occurred in quick succession no mountaineering clubs/ schools  would have thought about this unexpected tragedy in a short period. There are many reasons  attributed for the death of so many people - more than 12 this year.  Three  main reasons appear to be the contributing  factors - first, the issuance of as many as 381 permits (cost of each permit is $ 11000 ) to the prospective climbers,  the availability of small window of suitable weather on the higher slopes -  oxygen - starved death zone  in this short season and most importantly long wait in the line. The  resultant traffic jam on  both ways going up and coming down the mountain. led to slow depletion of oxygen canisters climbers carried with them.  This meant before running out of oxygen,  they  had to be squeezed within the short weather windows to achieve their goal - scaling the peak and getting back to the safe zone where they could breathe comfortably. A difficult job to do in a tough and rugged terrain above 28000 feet from msl.

The unfortunate fact is many who died on Everest this season  were experienced climbers. One among them was a 52-year old woman 
2019 human traffic on Everest. sportstar.thehindu.com/

Above image: This photo from climber Nirmal Purja's Project Possible expedition shows heavy traffic of mountain climbers lining up to stand at the summit of Mount Everest. Many teams had to line up for hours on May 22 to reach the summit, risking frostbites and altitude sickness, as a rush of climbers marked one of the busiest days on the world's highest mountain. The long line od climbers  in the death zone is similar to the one you may find  in front of a ballpark to get the ticket for  the cricket match between Austalia and England....................

from Odisha state (Dhenkanal district).  Kalpana Das was no stranger to this risk-ridden  outdoor adventure sport. She successfully scaled Everest from Nepal in 2008 and became  Odisha's first woman mountaineer, Kalpana died while descending after scaling Everest for the second time.  She had scaled several peaks in India, Nepal, South America, Australia and Europe and gained lots of experience in high-altitude mountaineering. According to  media reports, Kalpana had difficulty in  walking after reaching the peak. When she became too weak move with the help of Sherpas, she made the  descent. By the time they reached the balcony area, her breathing had stopped.
I am sure this daring woman's spirit of adventure and guts to face any worst situation on the high mountains, in spite of her age factor will inspire and instill confidence in young  Indian women  who like mountaineering. 
https://sportstar.thehindu.com/other-sports/mount-everest-climber-deaths-kalpana-das-odisha-traffic-summit-safety-concerns-anjali-kulkarni-nihal-bagwan-nepal-tourism-news/article27238379.ece

http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/odisha/2019/may/24/odishas-first-woman-mountaineer-kalpana-dies-1981118.html


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