CASPER, Wyo. — Bad weather, injuries, overcrowding and other logistical problems have forced Casper-based sports medicine physician Dr. Joe McGinley to call off his Mount Everest summit bid this week.
In a social media update Tuesday, McGinley said the team made the decision while at Camp 2 for multiple reasons.
“Long lines, changing weather patterns, large groups of unskilled climbers, some unethical behavior of theft at high camps and illness in the team all played a role,” McGinley wrote.
The weather had been sketchy since his arrival early last week. Though McGinley said there had been some effects from the altitude, he said he was feeling great at Camp 2.
McGinley shared a photo of a back-to-back line of hundreds of climbers.
McGinley promised there was much to elaborate on (“including climbers that didn’t know how to put on their crampons”) in the upcoming podcast update.
Although frustrated, McGinley said he enjoyed the adventure and experience. “The Himalayan mountains are stunning and having the opportunity to hike and climb this region was incredible,” he said.
McGinley spoke earlier this year about the logistics of planning a climb and the number of things that can foil a summit attempt.
“If the mountain says no, you’re not going up it,” McGinley said. “You have to be willing to turn around. It’s not worth dying for.“
His family agrees.
“I also can’t put words to describe the kindness and work ethic of the Sherpa people,” McGinley said. “The Sherpa work tirelessly to assist hikers and climbers throughout the valley. They put their lives in danger every day; without them, none of this would be possible.”