Literally too much crap on Everest


Many of the world’s popular climbs are a trail of human excrement from bottom to top (and back). To avoid it, simply avoid the “8000s” and the “Seven Summits”. Select from the peaks between 7500m and 8000m in the Himalaya, and the second or third highest on each continent. You’ll often have them to yourself. Unlike the circuses that the others have become. “Adventure is out there!”


Or you can make your own mountain.

Many people do that, the usual starting material is a molehill.



It’s only toxic to humans, and that might not be a bad thing. If the slopes become intolerable, maybe we’ll give them back to the wildlife. I understand they don’t mind a poo at all.


But it makes for slick sledding!

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Seems clear enough what the recycled material could be.

Can’t they set up a zip line at the top, then just slide the junk down to another level? Etc.

From the comments:


[quote=“winkybber, post:2, topic:52978”]Many of the world’s popular climbs are a trail of human excrement from bottom to top (and back).[/quote]Hmm. What about the likes of El Camino del Rey?

Not as long, but there’s still be good reason for human excrement thereabouts, I reckon.

They also have a ton of those oxygen bottles, other garbage, and dead people.

What if they set up a fund where you get charged for every pound you don’t bring down. Part of the licensing. Then you take that fund and use it to pay sherpas to make runs to bring down trash. Pay a bounty for every pound.

Now they won’t be able to get to the top often and bring stuff down, but as I understand it there is a lot of stuff in some of the more accessible areas. For someone that lives there and helps out with climbs regularly, that would be good money.


Looks like attempts are being made…but this is Nepal and enforcement will always be an issue.

Nepal’s government has not come up with a plan yet to tackle the issue of human waste. But starting this season, officials stationed at the base camp will strictly monitor garbage on the mountain, said Puspa Raj Katuwal, the head of the government’s Mountaineering Department.

The government imposed new rules last year requiring each climber to bring down to the base camp 8kgs (18 pounds) of trash the amount it estimates a climber discards along the route.

Climbing teams must leave a $4,000 deposit that they lose if they don’t comply with the regulations, Katuwal said.

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IIRC, bags for fecal matter are required for hikers wanting to summit Mt. Whitney from the east-side. When I’ve done long hikes, I usually pack out the TP I used as well, leaving only the turd buried in a 6" hole. The process that works best for me–put one buttcheek on a rock, hang the other cheek off, and bombs away.

I’m sure it’s different at base camp rather than higher up, but I would think part of the problem is both in the geology and temperatures encountered at higher altitudes.

Above 20,000 feet, I don’t think there’s much “dirt” on Everest to actually dig a hole into - it’s mostly just rock and snow/ice. Second, at extremely cold temps (with little oxygen), there is no bacterial decomposition occurring in order to break down the waste so organic material just simply mummifies.

Really, the only solution is “pack it in, pack it out”.

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You dream of the roof of the world and you just see world’s tallest toilet…


Ah, reminds one of the misheard Sound of Music lyric: “High on a hill lived a lonely goat turd…”


Surely this, like so many of life’s inconveniences, can be somehow solved with drones.


Would you use the drones to remove the feces, or enforce the ‘pack it out’ rule? Knowing that rotor-bladed aircraft have trouble above a certain height due to low air density, this can only result in the shit hitting the fan…


Completely and totally agreed. I carried four empty champagne bottles off of the Whitney summit last time there. Dingbats could carry four bottles of the stuff up a strenuous trail to a 15k summit, but the empties were just too much for their poor, their tired, their huddled masses yearning to do what I don’t know.


Sure. Shit all over those mountains.

Thats messed up. Sure the Whitney summit is pretty far from untouched by human hands… but leaving booze bottles up there?

While booze at altitude is awesome- leaving empties up there is very uncool. My crew, we wont leave so much as a grape stem out there.

Take only pictures and leave only footprints, people!

Carrying other peoples garbage out of the Whitney Zone is a stand up thing to do, thank you!