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COVID-19 shuts down Everest

MT. Everest
HIGH-ALTITUDE CLIMBERS ARE very though when we talk about their fittest, they are also healthiest people on the planet and their pursuits typically steer them miles away from civilization, but they won’t escape the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic that has caused travel restrictions and spurred quarantines around the world. Recently on March 11, the China Tibet Mountaineering Association, the organization in charge of issuing all travel and climbing permits across the Tibetan Plateau, announced that there will be no permit for climbers to climb Mount Everest from the China-controlled north side of the mountain this spring. After China’s announcement, Nepal, in a late-night decision on Thursday, also canceled all spring climbing expeditions, including those to Everest, according to The Kathmandu Post. Additionally, the government has temporarily stopped issuing on-arrival tourist visas.

The visa suspension will take place on March 14 and last until April 30. Mountain tourism is one of the backbones of Nepal’s economy, and Everest climbers alone contribute more than $300 million to the country, which ranks as one of the poorest in the world. This decision to stop all climbing expeditions will deliver a major blow to the local communities whose economic livelihoods rely on trekking and mountaineering tourism. “One tourist supports 11 Nepali families,” says Jiban Ghimire, a Kathmandu-based tour operator of Shangri-La Nepal Trek. Speculating about the fallout of an Everest shut-down, Ghimire says, “It’s going to be very tough. Hard to describe. We won’t see it right away, but it’s going to be huge.” Ghimire says that the real pain point will be the families who own the lodges, tea houses, and shops that are patronized by tourists each season.
COVID-19 shuts down Everest COVID-19 shuts down Everest Reviewed by Top Mountains in the world on April 22, 2020 Rating: 5

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