Legendary ‘Snow Leopard’ Sherpa Who Climbed Mount Everest 10 Times Without Oxygen Dies at 72

ang rita sherpa

A Nepalese man who broke records for climbing Mount Everest 10 times without an oxygen mask has died at the age of 72.

Major loss: Ang Rita Sherpa passed away in his home in the Nepali capital of Kathmandu on Monday after a long battle against liver and brain ailments, his grandson, Phurba Tshering, told Reuters.

  • He belonged to a group of people who live in the mountainous region of Nepal known as the Sherpa or Sharwa.
  • Many were saddened by his passing, including Ang Tshering Sherpa, a Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA) former president.
  • “He was a climbing star and his death is a major loss for the country and for the climbing fraternity,” he said.
  • Ang Rita’s body is set to be placed at a holy site known as Sherpa Gomba and will be cremated on Wednesday, Ang Tshering said.
  • “He was as active as snow leopards on the mountains and it was unique,” he told BBC. “That was why the mountaineering fraternity decided to accord him with this title [of Snow Leopard] as an honor.”

The legend: Born in the mountain village of Yillajung in eastern Nepal in 1948, Ang Rita made his record-breaking ascents up the world’s tallest mountain, measuring 8,848 meters (29,028 feet), between 1983 and 1996.

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  • The legendary climber never used bottled oxygen when he went on his treks.
  • He was recognized by the Guinness World Records in 2017 as the only person who climbed Mount Everest 10 times without an oxygen mask, with an unbeatable record that still holds today.
  • The Nepal government honored Ang Rita with the Gorkha Dakshin Bahu First Class and the Tri Shakti Patta First Class, Aljazeera reported.
  • Before becoming a legend, Ang Rita worked as a porter at 15 and speedily rose up the ranks and became a guide who would reach the summit of some of Nepal’s highest mountains.

Feature Image (left) via RACHILE (CC BY-SA 4.0), (right) Avenues Khabar

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