Dispatch 25 from Everest / May 2, 2012

Richards: I have to withdraw

Two Ascents, Both Seek Summit — Southeast Ridge Team to Focus on Education and Science; West Ridge Team of Anker and Cory Richards to Retrace Route of First American Ascent on West Ridge.

Climb to Be Covered Online Starting March 16 at natgeo.com/oneverest and www.thenorthface.com/everest. Real-time Updates from West Ridge Team to Start April 16 on National Geographic Magazine App for iPad

Hey crew!

How’s it? Well? Hope so.

All is well in Kathmandu as the last of the tests have finished up. The great news is that my body is as healthy as it has ever been. All the doctors have cleared me on all accounts and have repeatedly insisted that whatever the cause of the brief episode I experienced, it was not related to altitude. Likewise, there is no evidence of a pulmonary embolism. Wonderful news…though frustrating that we can’t find an explanation.

Because of the overwhelming positive encouragement from all the doctors and specialists who have helped over the past five days, it is with a heavy heart that I have to withdraw from the expedition. While conclusive medical testing has shown that I am fit to return, the final decision regarding my involvement comes down to the team at Base Camp. Though I’m deeply disappointed in the decision not to let me return, I understand completely the team’s collective concerns regarding my health and well-being, and honor and respect them.

My greatest wish is that the team will continue to climb strong and to climb well…getting to the top and back down with all ten fingers and all ten toes…I look forward to hearing of their success shortly and wish them the best on the climb.

Thanks so much to all who have helped over the past five days…especially Sadie Quarrier and Jiban Ghimire…and all the folks at National Geographic and The North Face…you are all amazing!

Best and warmest,


This post is an email received from Cory on the morning of May 2, 2012


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