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Sherpa breaks record with 27th Mount Everest summit

<i>Prakash Mathema/AFP/Getty Images</i><br/>Kami Rita Sherpa
Prakash Mathema/AFP/Getty Images
Kami Rita Sherpa

By Lilit Marcus and Sania Farooqui, CNN

(CNN) — A Nepali Sherpa has reached the top of Everest for the 27th time, breaking the world record for total number of summits of the world’s tallest, and one of its deadliest, mountains.

Kami Rita Sherpa, 53, completed his latest ascent early on May 17, Nepal Department of Tourism official Bigyan Koirala told CNN.

Kami Rita — most Sherpas go by their first names — is a senior guide at Kathmandu expedition company Seven Summit Treks. He began his career in mountaineering in 1992.

“We are very happy to know that this morning at 8:30 a.m., Kami Rita successfully summitted Mount Everest along with a foreign climber,” said Mingwa Sherpa, chairman of Seven Summit Treks.

He added: “Currently Kami Rita is descending. He is healthy and in good shape.”

Kami Rita was already a record holder after achieving a world-beating 26th climb of Everest last year.

Just this week, a fellow Nepali, 46-year-old Pasang Dawa Sherpa, tied Kami’s achievement with a 26th climb. Their tie lasted two days before Kami summited again to break the record.

May is the peak season for climbing Everest, which is known as Sagarmatha in Nepali.

The country issued permits for a record 463 foreign climbers for the 2023 Everest season, the highest number ever, raising concerns that there could be repeats of long queues to reach the top seen in previous years. Waits to summit have previously been blamed for fatalities on the mountain.

Nepal is home to eight of the world’s 10 highest peaks, including Everest, making mountaineering a significant source of revenue for the country.

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