Nepali man hopes to become oldest person atop Mount Everest
( dpa ) - A 77-year-old Nepalese man Sunday said he plans to climb Mount Everest in a bid to become the oldest man ever to reach the world's highest peak.
Min Bahadur Sherchan said he would attempt to reach the 8,848- metre-high summit in early May. He announced his intentions one day after the first-ever man to stand atop the peak, Sir Edmund Hillary, died in his home country of New Zealand.
Sherchan said he was attempting to climb the peak to encourage senior citizens as well as be an inspiration to the youths of the country.
"Many Nepalese have established records on Mount Everest," Sherchan said. "The record for the oldest climber to summit Mount Everest also should belong to a Nepali."
Sherchan is attempting to break the record set by 71-year-old Japanese Katsusuke Yanagisawa, who reached the summit last May.
Sherchan's consulting doctor said there was no reason why he couldn't climb the mountain despite his age.
"Sherchan does not have any physical condition that will prevent him climbing or pose danger to his health during the expedition," Dr Sundarmani Dixit said.
Sherchan will be supported by a veteran climber, Sherpa Pemba Dorji, and will attempt the climb between May 10 and 29.
More than 1,200 climbers have reached the world's highest summit since Sir Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa became the first people to climb the mountain on May 29, 1953.
More than 200 others have died trying to scale the summit.