Mountain man Ricky set for Tibet adventure

Ricky Munday
Ricky Munday

Bellshill mountaineer Ricky Munday is set for an expedition which includes climbing Everest and completing“the toughest foot race on earth”.

Action man Ricky, from Bellshill, has previously climbed the highest mountains in each continent, and has worked with earthquake relief on Haiti.

Now, in an email to the Times and Speaker, he says: “I hope to fulfill a lifelong dream and become one of a handful of people to summit Everest and complete the Marathon des Sables.

“The expedition is not ‘guided’, but has a team leader who will coordinate all of the logistics and our movement on the mountain.

“There are group Sherpas employed to carry some of the group gear, but no personal Sherpas – so I will carry all my own gear and will be cooking my own food and melting water etc above base camp.”

He added: “Each team member will be provided with five bottles of oxygen each.

“We will drive from Kathmandu overland to Tibet to base camp at 5,200m. We will establish four camps above base camp, with the highest camp at 8,300m.”

The north ridge was first attempted by a British team led by Mallory in 1921 – they reached the North Col (7,003m).

The second expedition in 1922 reached 8,320m before turning back, and was the first team to use supplemental oxygen.

It was also on this expedition that the first deaths were reported, when an avalanche killed seven Sherpas. The 1924 British expedition with Mallory and Irvine is most notable for the mystery of whether they made the summit or not.

A Chinese team made the first summit from Tibet on May 25, 1960.

Tibet was closed to foreigners after China invaded and annexed the country, which prevented any further attempts until a Japanese team summited in 1980 via the Hornbein Couloir on the North Face.

Ricky said: “Overall, the north side of the mountain is more technically difficult than the south side and significantly colder and windier.”