Everest climbers trying to forge first new route up mountain in a decade amid dead bodies, litter and ‘traffic jams’

THE INDEPENDENT:

There were no queues, no litter and no bodies to solemnly mark the route.

It was quiet save for the sharp crunch of snow as two figures climbed along an untouched slope of Mount Everest.

The scene stood in sharp contrast to social media and news reports detailing a single-file line of climbers stretching along the ridge line, increasingly high levels of pollution and the gruesome need to navigate around the bodies of lost climbers.

The heaviest traffic, the kind seen in a viral photo, occurs along two routes, the north east ridge in Tibet and the South Col in Nepal.

This season, two climbers – Cory Richards and Estaban “Topo” Mena – set out to carve a new route along the world’s tallest peak.

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