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Pumori Climbing Expedition Dispatch

October 28, 2009 – Meet Our Sherpa Team

One of the blessings of this trip is living and working closely with our team at base camp. Our Sherpa and staff not only haul loads, install tents, and advance the climbing route for our climbing team, feed us, and guide us through the Khumbu trails – they’ve also been incredibly supportive company around camp, offering suggestions on how to prevent altitude illness (keep your head warm), hosting the most festive mountain Puja ceremony imaginable, and are always, always, ready with a smile, laugh and outstretched hand in assistance. Here’s your chance to meet the team.

Clockwise from lower left: Scott, Ang Tshering, Kami Tshering, Todd, Jamie, Pemba Dorje, Ang Namgyel, Phuri Gora and Bal Bahadur

Ang Temba Sherpa

Ang Temba Sherpa, Sirdar

Ang Temba, our Sirdar, is responsible for the hiring and supervision of all staff, purchasing of all food, fuel and supplies for our expedition, and the budget for operating the trip. He’s also been a regular trail companion during our trek, and is always ready with a few warm words of encouragement. He resides in Pangboche with his wife Yangzing, and they have one daughter and one son. Ang Temba keeps two horses, affectionately nicknamed the “Khumbu Ambulance” because of their regular service bringing ill and injured trekkers down from high altitudes to medical centers around the region. He and his wife operate a lodge in Pangboche called the Highland Sherpa resort, where they grow a prolific vegetable garden including vegetables that don’t usually grow at that high elevation. They also grow fresh mint, which Yangzing uses to make delicious tea in their lodge. Temba is a dear friend of Jamie Clarke’s. Jamie and his wife Barbara were married in Temba’s hometown of Khunde, in the presence of Temba’s family and friends.

Ang Tshering Sherpa

Ang Tshering Sherpa, Base Camp Manager

Ang Tshering is 36 years old. He resides in Khunde with his wife Pasang Futi and is the brother of Ang Temba. Ang Tshering is Base Camp Manager on this expedition, and is an electrical genius; he powers our camp, including everything from lights to computers to radios, with solar energy, rechargeable batteries and conservative use of a generator. He’s working with us on a leave of absence from the Khumbu Electricity Company, the local Sherpa-run hydroelectric cooperative. He and his wife also operate the Sherpa Land Lodge in Khumjung, and have two daughters.

Kami Tshering Sherpa

Kami Tshering Sherpa, Climbing Sherpa

Kami Tshering is our head Climbing Sherpa, and is 45 years old. He lives in Pangboche with his wife Lhakpa Diki Sherpa, three sons, and two daughters. When not climbing, he tends a herd of four Yaks. He has a lengthy mountain resume: thirty expeditions and nine trips to the summit of Everest, ten trips to the summit of Cho Oyo, three times to the summit of Shisapangma, nine trips to the summit of Ama Dablam, one expedition on Nuptse, one expedition on Dolagiri, two expeditions on Makalu, and has reached Camp Four on K2. As of right now, Kami has been twice to the summit of Pumori via the normal route, although the whole team is optimistic that shortly that number will increase to three.

Pemba Dorje Sherpa

Pemba Dorje Sherpa, Climbing Sherpa

Pemba Dorje is 47 years old, and resides in Pangboche with his wife Nima Yangjeen. He has one son, and five daughters, and tends a herd of five Yaks. He has participated in 20 Everest expeditions, with six summits under his belt, and four trips to the summit of Cho Oyo.

Ang Namgyel Sherpa

Ang Namgyel Sherpa, Climbing Sherpa

Ang Namgyel is 29 years old, and resides in Pangboche with his wife Chewang Lhamu. He has two daughters, and tends a herd of 25 Yaks. He has participated in seven Everest expeditions; having summited four times, and has participated in one Cho Oyo expedition.

Kami Tshering Sherpa

Kami Tshering Sherpa, Trekking Guide

Kami Tshering is 23 years old (nicknamed “Little Kami,” since he’s younger – though taller – than “Big Kami”), and lives in Khunde with his wife Nawang Doma and his five month old son. Kami tends a herd of six Yaks, and in just four years of climbing, already has summited Everest twice, and is optimistic about many more trips to the mountain.

Phuri Gora Sherpa

Phuri Gora Sherpa, Senior Cook

Phuri is 52 years old, and lives in Gora. Phuri’s wife’s name was Kiphuti, but she has passed away. They have three sons, and three daughters. He keeps four Yaks. He has been a trekking cook for 35 years.


Bal Bahadur Magar, Senior Cook

Bal Bahadur is 36 years old, and resides in Rolpa with his wife Lalita Mangar. They have one son. Bal has kept us incredibly well fed on this trip – some of the team members have actually gained weight during our time under Bal’s care! We’ve sampled such surprises as tuna sushi, Thai veggie curries, and tacos, but above all else, Bal might be the world’s master of frying chicken. He has done many, many expedition jobs over the years, and has been a senior cook for eight years.

Man Kagi Tamang, Kitchen Staff

Man Kagi Tamang is 43, and resides in Gorakhani. He and his wife Vi Pi Tamang, who has since passed away, have one son and three daughters. He tends a herd of four cow, and has twelve years of experience working as trekking staff.

Kharka Rai Sherpa, Runner

Kharka Rai is from Solu has been our “Runner” on this trek. Covering the ground repeatedly from Pangboche to our Base Camp to carry supplies up and other loads down, he’s covered the trail back and forth to our Base Camp at least seven times so far on our trek with more trips to come.

Ang Tshering, Pemba Dorje and Kami Tshering enjoying a few minutes in the cook tent

Ang Tshering, Pemba Dorje and Kami Tshering enjoying a few minutes in the cook tent

Bal Bahadur works hard in the kitchen

Bal Bahadur woking in the kitchen