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Congestion a concern on Everest

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POSTED March 24, 2014 6:18 p.m.

KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Nepal plans to minimize the congestion of climbers near the 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) summit of Mount Everest, which gets clogged with scores of climbers during the short window of good weather, officials said Monday.

One of the initiatives includes the introduction of separate fixed ropes for climbers ascending and descending near the summit to help ease the traffic, said Tourism Ministry official Mohan Krishna Sapkota.  team of government officials will be posted at the base camp located at 5,300 meters (17,380 feet) throughout the spring climbing season to monitor climbers and coordinate with expedition leaders.

The move follows years of criticism that Nepal has done little to manage the growing number of Everest climbers despite making millions of dollars in fees. A nine-member government team will set up its own tent at the base camp to report on the activities there, provide help when needed and ensure that climbers are cleaning up behind them. They would also be able to stop any trouble, like last year’s brawl between three foreign climbers and local Sherpa guides.

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