This man has climbed Mount Everest more than anyone in the world

He's been at the top of the world 27 times, to be exact.
Sejal Sharma
Sherpa Kami Rita
Sherpa Kami Rita


The expedition to the top of Mount Everest is a lifetime mountaineering experience that allows one to stand at the top of the world. But there’s a Nepali Sherpa who scales the peak with the ease of a mountain goat and for whom it’s more of an annual experience.

Breaking his own record of scaling Everest 26 times, 53-year-old Kami Rita set on an expedition last month to climb the world’s highest peak for the 27th time.

"We're trying to get details. For now it's 100% confirmed that Kami Rita scaled for the 27th time,” a general manager at the Seven Summit Treks, the company Rita works for, told Reuters.

The manager further stated he got to the summit at 8:30 am NPT (0245 GMT) along with a foreign climber. 

Rita works as a senior climber and is a Nepali ‘Sherpa’ – a mountain guide known for their climbing skills. His is a dangerous occupation as Rita guides and assists people who come from far-off places to climb not just Everest but also other peaks like K2, Lhotse, and Manaslu.

He scaled Everest for the first time on May 13, 1994, when he was just 24 years old. Endearingly called ‘Thapkhe’ by his friends and family, Rita belongs to the Thame village of Solukhumbu in Nepal. 

The Sherpa also holds the record for ‘Most climbs over 8000m,’ per the Guinness World Records.

Every year, approximately 800 people attempt to climb Everest during the few weeks when the weather conditions are just right. This is usually in May when the skies are clear, and the promise of June monsoon looms afar.

Reuters reports that the Nepal authorities issued 478 permits, the most ever, for people to climb Everest compared with the previous record of 408 in 2021. And most people can’t scale the mountain without the help of Sherpas. 

The life of a Sherpa is a precarious one

Only two days back, Rita’s record of 26 climbs was challenged by another fellow Sherpa, Pasang Dawa, who reached the summit along with a Hungarian climber and marked his 26th climb. But the climbing record for both the Sherpas remained equal for only a couple of days.

Only last month, it was reported that three Sherpas died from an avalanche when they were on their way to cross the ‘football field,’ a flat section of the Khumbu Icefall halfway between Mount Everest‘s Base Camp and Camp 1.

Nepal, which has a major share of the Himalayas, makes the majority of its living from mountain expeditions for which people come from all over the world. The local people living around the mountain peaks make a living directly or indirectly from the tourism the peaks bring in.

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