Climbers bury bodies, gather Mt. Everest garbage
TOKYO - Mountain climbers from Japan, South Korea and Georgia cleared two tonnes of garbage from Mount Everest in the past two weeks, a fraction of the trash littering the world\'s highest peak, Kyodo news agency said yesterday.
Among the oxygen bottles, gas cartridges and plastic cluttering the South Col Valley were bottles left there for a half century, dating back to a 1952 failed bid by a Swiss expedition to reach Everest\'s peak, Kyodo said.
That was one year before Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa conquered the mountain.
The cleaning expedition also buried two bodies - an Indian mountaineer and a Nepali Sherpa.
Displaying some of the garbage in the Nepali capital of Kathmandu, team leader Ken Noguchi told reporters there were still four to five tonnes of garbage at the Col, the point from which the final trail to the Everest summit begins.
Those returning from Mount Everest say the mountain that lures climbers from around the world each year is littered with more than 100 tonnes of garbage.
\"We found more garbage on the Nepalese side than on the north side in Tibet,\" Kyodo quoted Noguchi as saying.
Noguchi, who has already led two cleaning expeditions to Everest from the Tibetan side and collected a total of about three tonnes of trash, plans to clean the base camp of Mount Manaslu in north central Nepal next spring, Kyodo said.
REUTERS NEWS SERVICE
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