Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Everest 2016 - safety evaluation continues

Everest 2016 - Cancelled once again.

We cancelled Everest in 2015 and as a result our staff were spared, and not involved in the tragic avalanche at base camp created by the April 25th earth quake last spring. Amen!

Everest 2016 season is now getting underway, however our concerns for cancelling in 2015 are still present, (see announcement below). Our biggest concern is the affects of global warming in the Himalayas and other mountains around the world. We are not prepared to put our climbers and Sherpa guide staff in harms way climbing through the crumbling ice-fall, and passing under fast melting seracs and dodging rock fall on the Lhotse face. Mountaineering has always been risky, but educated risk taking is key when taking clients money offering them your guidance in safety.

We are also very much concerned about the environmental protection implementations that we worked so hard towards the past 20+ years, we fear it will be compromised as the industry becomes more desperate with new competitors using price cutting as their edge and not investing in the costs of leaving footprints only and how corruption will prevail when bottom-lines are too low.

The Nepalese government has yet to restrict the number of climbers allowed to climb nor have they made any attempts to regulate who can operate there. Low ball operators are taking novice climbers up the mountain on a one-way ticket. We saw this coming and don't want any part of it.

More important than ever before, we continue to prepare aspiring climbers for Everest and other mountain objectives on our TRAINING CLIMB offering extensive instructional ascents on 6000m peaks in the Everest region. Helping participants be climbers NOT just a client as they should be.

We will also continue with our work helping REBUILD NEPAL with First Steps Himalaya and organize private base camp and Annapurna treks, and our annual group BASECAMP STAY TREK in October each year. We will do our best with the help of our customers to bring tourism back to the beautiful people of Nepal.


Since beginning our operations over 24 years ago, it has always been a challenge to navigate through the complex and ever-changing political, social, and environmental aspects inherent in running a climbing and trekking operation in the Himalayas. The pay-off nonetheless has always been worth it – to our clients, to our Sherpa’s and their families, and to us. And as much as last year’s tragic events highlighted both the need for better safety regulations and a reassessment of the business which climbing Everest has become, our present concerns and consequent conclusions come from a much larger set of worrying circumstances.
The local government’s fickle posturing and vague statements relating to mountaineering policies, the drastic alterations to the weather both traditional ENSO and ENSO Modoki have and will continue to cause, the growing list of socio-political events which has a cumulative effect of compromising regional security, present us with only one responsible and rational course of action. We at Peak Freaks are cancelling our commercial Everest 2015 summit climb. As clear as this decision has become it is still far from an easy one for us to have come to. The financial impact on our partners, our Sherpa’s, will be severe.

The patience and loyalty of our clients will be taxed. Even so, our love for the region and what we do remains intact. Our determination to continue expeditions and our commitment to those who welcomed us to the Himalayas almost a quarter century ago and who continue to work by our side has inspired us. It has inspired us to widen our offerings. To provide adventures free from thorny politics, crumbling glaciers, and looming ice-falls. After all, the majesty of the Himalayas should never be locked away.

So on the eve of our sad Everest news we hope solace can be found knowing that Peak Freaks will not close its doors. Instead it will open paths for adventurers to climb other challenging and awe-inspiring peaks, to take cultural tours through the highest lands of Nepal and Tibet, and to experience unconditionally this magical kingdom we now call our second home.