COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho.--A Coeur d’Alene man’s Mt. Everest climb is uncertain following the most devastating avalanche on the world’s tallest point. The Friday avalanche killed 13 mountaineering guides.
Pete Erbland was near the area at the time but was uninjured.
Erbland’s expedition group, called the Altitude Junkies, posted updates online about what had happened on the mountain since the avalanche.
Erbland was among 400 foreign climbers on Mt. Everest on Friday when a chunk of ice tore loose and triggered an avalanche, burying 13 Sherpa guides. There were three other Sherpas that remained missing and were presumed dead.
Erbland’s wife, Tiffany, said many climbers awaited word on whether or not they would be able to continue their trek.
An online post from Erbland’s expedition group said the Sherpa community had met daily since the avalanche to decide collectively if they would continue to climb for the season. The post said some teams decided to leave the mountain.
Tiffany Erbland said her husband messaged her Wednesday morning. She said he told her that his group leader went to meet with the Nepalese minister of tourism to talk about the guides on Wednesday.
The Sherpas had given Nepal’s government a list of demands to meet for the climbing season that runs through May. The Erbland’s said the government had agreed to meet some of the demands including setting up a relief fund for Sherpas killed or injured in climbing accidents.
Erbland said the minister would present the documents to the Sherpas on Thursday.
A group post by Erbland’s team added the Sherpa team and team members would make their own personal choices on whether to continue.
Tiffany Erbland said it looked as if the Altitude Junkies’ Sherpas were staying put as long as the Nepalese government treated them fairly.