Joushua Cheruioyot Kirui.[Everest,X]

A Kenyan mountain climber has died while attempting to scale Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen. 

Joshua Cheruiyot Kirui is reported to have died after he went missing on Wednesday morning in the company of a Nepali guide who is still missing.

“His body was found a few meters below the summit point of Mt Everest. He was on a daring mission to reach the summit without supplemental oxygen and was accompanied by a Nepali climber Nawang Sherpa whose fate is still unknown,” rescuers said. 

Kirui was reported missing after summiting above 8,000 meters on the mountain. It is at this point he and his Nepali guide went out of contact. 

Part of Cheruiyot Kirui's journey submitting Mt Everest. [Screengrab]

Journey to the top

Cheruiyot had announced his plans to attempt to get to the highest point of the mountain without oxygen supplement which he said was a “curiosity expedition”.

Initially, he was to embark on April 17, 2024, but was deterred by challenges of poor weather conditions.

“Yesterday would have been trekking day 1...but we've been stuck at Ramenchhap airport for two days now due to weather hiccups, two valuable acclimatization days, no point having a schedule or calendar here. But hopefully, we hit the ground trekking tomorrow,” he wrote on Instagram. 

“For some reason, I feel I can comfortably climb Everest with oxygen, which unfortunately neutralises the thrill of such a climb for me. I'm not sure of my chances without oxygen though. Which makes such an attempt exciting, introducing the adrenaline factor, and we just have to find out," he would write a day later. 

He noted that the challenge to climb Everest had been achieved by some individuals but no African had made an attempt which he felt he needed to achieve. 

The Mountaineering community has condoled with friends and family noting the deceased's passion for mountain climbing. 

His indomitable will and passion for mountaineering will forever be an inspiration. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends during this time of sorrow. Rest in peace, Cheruiyot. (3/3) — Everest Today (@EverestToday) May 23, 2024

His death adds to a series of three others in this season.