Without A Sherpa Or Oxygen Cylinder, Skalzang Rigzin Conquered Everest's Summit Alone!

Early Thursday morning, Indian mountaineer Skalzang Rigzin achieved the remarkable feat of solo summiting Mount Everest (8848 meters)  without the assistance of a sherpa or an oxygen cylinder. Rigzin, a 42-year-old resident of Ladakh, reached the summit at around 4:00 AM local time, becoming the first Indian to accomplish this feat solo.

In 1984, Phu Dorjee Sherpa was the first Indian to summit Everest without supplemental oxygen. Rigzin's achievement adds another milestone to India's mountaineering history, following in the footsteps of Dorjee Sherpa. In 2022, Rigzin had also summited Annapurna (8091 metres) and Lhotse (8516 metres) without sherpa or oxygen, setting precedents for Indian mountaineering.

Last year, during the Everest-Lhotse expedition, Rigzin was accompanied by Major Chirag Chatterjee of the Indian Army, but due to adverse weather conditions, they couldn't attempt the route. Following this, Rigzin embarked on his solo Everest expedition.

Rigzin reported encountering heavy crowding on Everest in recent days, making the climb challenging without supplemental oxygen. Consequently, he waited at Camp 2 before proceeding to Camp 3 on Tuesday. From there, he made his way to Camp 4 on Wednesday afternoon before starting the final ascent towards the summit. Rigzin returned to Camp 2 later the same day.

Unfortunately, due to illness, another Bengali climber, Sabita Mahato from Hugli, was forced to descend from 8500 meters. Additionally, Babar Ali, a mountaineer and doctor from Bangladesh, successfully summited Everest and Lhotse on May 19th and 21st, respectively.

Rigzin's solo achievement underscores the indomitable spirit of mountaineering and serves as an inspiration for future generations of Indian climbers.

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