Nepali sherpa hauls climber from Everest 'death zone'

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STORY: This Nepali sherpa guide is carrying a Malaysian climber on his back, down from a part of Mount Everest called the ‘death zone’…

Gelje Sherpa says he saved the man’s life.

He was guiding a client to the summit in mid-May.

That’s when he saw the Malaysian climber clinging to a rope and shivering in the extreme cold.

The ‘death zone’ is a part of the mountain where temperatures can drop below minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit.

Rescues are “almost impossible” there, authorities say.

Gelje convinced his client to give up the summit attempt.

And began his rare high-altitude rescue.

“It took me five to six hours to get from 8,500 (metres above sea level) to 7,900. It was very difficult. In places where it was rockier, we could not drag him; we had to carry him on our backs with difficulty."

He eventually got help from another guide.

A helicopter then carried the climber down to base camp.

“It was important for us to rescue him, even from the summit. Money can be earned anytime. Left like that, he could have died. We have saved his life by quitting the summit."

The climber was put on a flight to Malaysia last week.

The dramatic rescue comes as Nepal has issued a record 478 permits for Everest during this year’s climbing season.

At least 12 climbers have died and another five are still missing on Everest’s slopes.