For the 21st time, Apa Sherpa has successfully climbed to the top of the world, breaking his own record. The 51-year-old Nepalese man, who now lives in Colorado, arrived at the summit after climbing all night through what expedition leaders called “perfect” weather.
Apa and the five other climbers with him were climbing as part of the Eco Everest Campaign, which aims to document the impact of climate change on the mountain and remove thousands of pounds of trash left behind by previous expeditions. Apa first reached the highest point on Earth more than 20 years ago, in 1990. Over the last four years, he has participated in the Eco Everest Campaign.
News of Sherpa’s triumph comes at a sad moment for Everest. Earlier in the week, 82-year-old former Nepalese foreign minister Shailendra Kumar Upadhyaya died shortly after reaching Camp 1 on the mountain. He was attempting to become the oldest person to summit. 29 people have already reached the summit this year and more than 3,000 people have reached the top since 1953.