An 84-year-old Spanish mountaineer injured his leg on Wednesday as he tried to reach the summit of Nepal’s Dhaulagiri, one of the two “8,000ers” he had left to climb to claim the title of the oldest climber to conquer the world’s 14-highest mountains.
A Sherpa fell on Carlos Soria, injuring his tibia, a message posted on his behalf on his Twitter and Facebook accounts said.
The climber, who was on his 15th attempt on Mt Dhaulagiri, was preparing to make a push for the summit when the incident occurred, the Himalayan Times newspaper said.
“He fell when he was climbing towards the summit (…) and suffered leg injuries,” Thaneswar Guragai, general manager of the Seven Summit Treks company, which is providing local support to Soria, told Reuters.
The accident took place at an altitude of 7,600 metres (24,934 ft). Sherpa guides were bringing him down to base camp, for him to be evacuated to Kathmandu by helicopter, Guragai added.
Soria has successfully climbed 12 of the world’s 8,000-metre peaks and had the Dhaulagiri and Tibet’s Shishapangma left to become the oldest climber to reach the summits of the planet’s 14-highest peaks.
He had dedicated his challenge to elderly victims of the COVID-19 pandemic.