A year after his attempt was stopped by a deadly earthquake in Nepal, Red Fox co-founder Vlad Moroz reached the summit of Mt. Everest on Friday, May 20.
Moroz and the Russian team were at advanced base camp (6,400 meters) last year when the earthquake struck. Multiple avalanches shook snow and ice loose from the slopes along the routes up Mt. Everest, halting all attempts at the summit.
The expedition was organized by the 7 Summits Club (Russia) with the support of the Russian Mountaineering Federation. Red Fox is an equipment partner of the expedition. It has been a unique attempt as seven Russian women are taking part in it.
The expedition has been led by Alexander Abramov, who is leading the climb up Everest for the 14th time. The team chose the classic route from the North (Tibetan) side.
The following world records were planned:
- Alexander Abramov – Ludmila Korobeshko: spouses climb Everest for the third time
- Lynne Hanna – Noel Hanna: spouses climb Everest from both sides
- Liana Chabdarova: the first Balkarian woman climbs Everest
- Tatyana Yalovchak: the first woman from Ukraine climbs Everest
- Roman Reutov: record panoramic shooting on Everest
Of the 26 total participants, 16 of them plan to summit.
Red Fox is no stranger to the world’s highest mountain, having sponsored various climbs.
In the climbing community, it is said that the mountain decides whether you get to climb it. That has been more true than ever in recent years.
In 2014, it was an avalanche. On April 18 that year, a 14 million ton block of ice swept down on the climbing route across the Khumbu Icefall, killing 16 Sherpas.
Then on April 25, 2015 that 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal.
Besides avalanches and earthquakes, there is always the weather to contend with as well. On May 10 and 11 of 1996, eight people were caught in a horrific blizzard and died on Mount Everest during attempts to ascend or, having summited, descend from the mountain.
Most climbers agree that it is weather that has the final word on whether one will make it to the top.
“I feel excitement and emotion,” Moroz said as he finished packing gear before his climb.
He said there are two factors critical to success. “There are stages with ropes and belays on Everest, but there are no technically difficult rock stages. Endurance and correct acclimatization are the most important there. Those two things.”
This year, the weather cooperated.