Monitors flash Kaji Sherpa's vital signs as he recovers in the ICU of Katmandu's Norvic International hospital. Miraculously, the 39-year-old senior climber survived the wall of deadly ice and snow that crushed 16 of his colleagues in the largest loss of life in a single day on Everest, the mountain Sherpas call "Mother Goddess of Earth."
The team had been preparing a path for their clients, fixing ropes on a treacherous stretch known as the "Popcorn" ice field, so-called for its bulging chunks of ice.
"There was a small hill" that acted as a buffer, Kaji says.
An avalanche destroyed a chairlift at the Crystal Mountain resort near Mount Rainier on Monday afternoon when the resort was closed. The avalanche was intentionally set off by the resort's ski patrol and no one was hurt.
Despite the destruction, patrollers say they have no regrets.