Mountaineers from all over the world are up in arms today at Everest base camp claiming that dozens of summit attempts have been foiled because the mountain is dangerously overcrowded.
A Japanese climber, attempting the traditional south face route told us that he had been forced to turn back near the Hillary Step because the overcrowding had resulted in a severe bottleneck.
This is not unusual, as the Hillary Step is only negotiable by a single string of roped together ladders, and standing in line is not an uncommon experience for aspiring summiteers. It seems that for some reason - possibly the issuing of way too many permits - the problem is much worse this year.
"I got to Hillary Step," the Japanese climber told us. "And too many people. Like football crowd. All standing in line like world's biggest bus stop. One man, he stop halfway up ladder, take out stove and pan and start frying pork sausages. People angry and shout at him but he just tell them get lost and carry on cooking sausages. Everybody angry because he holding them up but he no care. He even eat sausages with bread, onion and ketchup before he get moving. Selfish bastard."
American climber Bradley Tarball III of the Tarballs of Louisiana told us:
"I turned back man. It was just crazy up there. Some guy was moving up and down the line playing a guitar, and there were African guys up there selling souvenirs, like carvings and those necklaces that light up when you put them on. Crap like that. There was another bunch of guys watching The History Channel on a laptop while they waited and somebody even said there's a kebab and burger van up on the summit, but I didn't see that myself because I gave up and came back down to base. I won't be coming back. The mountain gets more like Disneyland every season."
Edmund Hillary, who climbed the mountain in 1953 reportedly kept bees in his spare time.
More mountain madness as we get it.