Mount Everest

Northeast Ridge

  • Added By: Terrill Thompson
  • Date added: Jan 29, 2017
  • Route Distance: 24.28 km (15.09 miles)


This route approaches Mount Everest from the North, via Tibet, and was the original route of the earliest attempts to summit Everest by British mountaineers, including the 1924 expedition in which George Mallory and Andrew Irvine lost their lives near the summit.

Getting There

Approaching Mount Everest from the north typically begins in Lhasa, which is accessible either from Kathmandu, Nepal, or Beijing, China. The drive from Lhasa to Everest base camp goes through Shigatse and Tingri, and typically includes plenty of rest stops for proper acclimatization. 

Route Description

This route travels through rugged Tibetan alpine terrain. Most of the climbing on the lower mountain is easier than that on the south-side route but is technically challenging higher on the mountain. From base camp, the trek to Camp 2 (Intermediate Camp) and on to Camp 3 (Advanced Base Camp) gains approximately 3700 feet (1130 meters) over 18 miles (30km) of terrain, up the broad Rongbuk Glacier valley flanking Mount Changtse to the west. After Camp 3, climbing gets steeper and more technical.

Additional details from Wikipedia: Camp III (ABC—Advanced Base Camp) is situated below the North Col at 6,500 m (21,300 ft). To reach Camp IV on the north col, climbers ascend the glacier to the foot of the col where fixed ropes are used to reach the North Col at 7,010 m (23,000 ft). From the North Col, climbers ascend the rocky north ridge to set up Camp V at around 7,775 m (25,500 ft). The route crosses the North Face in a diagonal climb to the base of the Yellow Band reaching the site of Camp VI at 8,230 m (27,000 ft). From Camp VI, climbers make their final summit push. Climbers face a treacherous traverse from the base of the First Step: ascending from 8,501 to 8,534 m (27,890 to 28,000 ft), to the crux of the climb, the Second Step: ascending from 8,577 to 8,626 m (28,140 to 28,300 ft). (The Second Step includes a climbing aid called the "Chinese ladder", a metal ladder placed semi-permanently in 1975 by a party of Chinese climbers.[250] It has been almost continuously in place since, and ladders have been used by virtually all climbers on the route.) Once above the Second Step the inconsequential Third Step is clambered over: ascending from 8,690 to 8,800 m (28,510 to 28,870 ft). Once above these steps, the summit pyramid is climbed by a snow slope of 50 degrees, to the final summit ridge along which the top is reached.

Elevation Plot

There is one other route available for this peak. Check it out on the Mount Everest Routes Page