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Everest Update: Fake Summits and Weather Stations

Nahida Manzoor's "summit photo" compared to that of another climber. The Himalayan Times photo.

An Indian woman, claiming to be the first Kashmiri to stand on the roof of the world, was recently called out for what appeared to be photoshopped Everest summit photos. Nahida Manzoor was awarded her Everest Summit certificate from the Nepali Department of Tourism on June 12th, but an investigation was launched when climbers questioned the legitimacy of her summit. Snowy Horizon Treks, the climbing operation Manzoor had been a part of, told the Department of Tourism that all eight of its climbers had submitted the mountain. However, climbers on the mountain on the same day as Manzoor told officials that Manzoor had actually been left behind on the South Col by her climbing guide. 

RELATED: Seven Climbers Die In Everest Traffic Jam

Inspection of her summit photo shows what appears to be an obviously manipulated image, when compared to the original. If Manzoor is proven to have faked her summit, her certificate will be wiped from the records and she will face a five-year ban from climbing in the Himalayas. Given the fact that Manzoor clearly only wished to summit Everest for the glory, it seems that she may have been better served by John Oliver’s guiding service, which would have saved her a large amount of time and thousands of dollars for what would essentially be the same thing.

The Nat Geo Expedition Team in front of their new weather station. National Geographic photo.

In some good news from the top of the world, National Geographic activated the highest weather stations on the planet recently. The two weather stations, one installed on The Balcony (8,430 m) and the other on the South Col (7,945 m) are the two highest weather stations in the world. They are supported by three other weather stations installed lower on the mountain.

The weather stations, placed to measure the effects of climate change on the mountain, will also provide live updates of weather conditions on the notorious peak, including humidity, temperature, wind speed, and pressure, all of which you can check out for yourself. A National Geographic statement explained that “The Balcony weather station is the first weather station installed at an elevation above 8,000 meters, meaning it will also be the first to sample the stratosphere as natural variations in the atmospheric boundaries change over time.” So, next time you complain about needing to wear an extra layer when you step outside, go take a peek at the conditions on Everest and remember that everything is relative. 

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