Sherpa Makes 'Almost Impossible' Rescue To Save Climber From Mt. Everest's Death Zone

June 6, 2023

A seasoned mountaineer became the savior of a Malaysian climber on the treacherous slopes of Mount Everest.

The selfless act of heroism unfolded in the unforgiving "death zone," where danger lurks at every step and the margin for error is razor-thin.

sherpa rescues man everest
Gelje Sherpa - Mt. Everest Guide

30-year-old Gelje Sherpa was guiding a client to the Everest summit on May 18 when he saw another climber clinging to a rope and shivering from extreme cold in the area known as the death zone, where temperatures can dip to -30C or lower.

Gelje ran over to the climber in need, gave him oxygen, wrapped him in a sleeping mattress and then hauled him 600 meters down the mountain until another guide stepped in, which took roughly six hours.

"I saw someone in danger. A man who needed rescuing and no one else was helping," Gelje said.

"I made the decision to cancel our clients summit push so that I could bring him down to safety before he died up there alone. I carried him myself all the way down to Camp 4 where a rescue team helped from then on."

"It is almost impossible to rescue climbers at that altitude," said Bigyan Koirala, a Nepal tourism official. "It is a very rare operation."

Gelje has since received an outpouring of support on social media.

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