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‘Excuse me, but you’re stepping on my victory flag’ By Don Anderson The chance that Whistler’s Jayson Faulkner and crew will be alone at the peak of Mount Everest in late September is marginal. On May 7, 29 men and eight women crowded onto the summit, a record number of climbers on the world’s highest elevation in a single day. The previous record of 32 climbers was set last May. Faulkner and Whistlerites Reto Marti and Rob Driscoll will be teaming up with three other West Coast climbers in an attempt on Everest in September. While Everest has become crowded with climbers, the severity of the mountain was reinforced last weekend when eight people died in a storm that engulfed the mountain. The new record for summiting was set by climbers from seven different expeditions. A total of 18 expeditions were registered to climb the mountain, on the border between Nepal and Tibet, this spring, setting another record. Everyone from the International Peace Climb Team to New Zealander Peter Hillary, son of Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to climb the mountain from the Nepal side, made it to the summit last week. Brit Alison Hargreaves also became the first woman to climb the peak this week unaided and without oxygen. More climbers are on their way to the world’s biggest nose bleed over the next few months. For three months, a team of South African journalists will be making daily reports from a base camp at 5,800 metres while on their way up the perilous Khumbu Icefall. That team is boasting its ascent will be the first truly high tech climb of Everest, combining digital photography and satellite telephony to bring Internet surfers up-to-the-minute reports from the top of the world.

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