Mingma Gyalje Sherpa, aka “Mingma G”, became prominent in the mountaineering community after his successful solo ascent of Chobuche, mount K2 in winter and the opening of the new summit route to the actual top of Manaslu. He was born and raised in a small village in north-central Nepal, the valley where most Sherpa’s are involved in mountaineering by profession.
Mingma G stepped into mountaineering in 2006 at the early age of 20 as a climbing Sherpa for a Japanese Manaslu expedition group. Since then, he has been passionate about mountain climbing and got his certification under UIAGM/IFMGA as a Mountain guide. After working for a decade as a Sherpa for different expedition companies, he preferred to form his own, where he could add his expertise to uplift the quality of the service and welfare of the Sherpa guides from Imagine Nepal. Later, in 2016, he started “Imagine Nepal Trek and Expedition”. Today more than 20 experienced and strongest climbing Sherpa, including certified Mountain Guides, are working for the company under the leadership of Mingma G.
“Mingma G was honoured with “Honorary Goodwill Ambassador” for “Nepal Tourism Year 2011″, Tenzing Hillary Award 2021, and National Award by Honorary President of Nepal Vidya Devi Bhandari in 2021. He was also honoured by Bangla Mountaineering and Trekking Club, Bangladesh and Iran Alpine Club. Numerous certificates of his Successful Ascents and medals also praised his responsibility and success.”
From the beginning, I have been saying this expedition was for the nation’s pride, the Nepalese climbing community and the future generation of Nepalese climbers. Nepalese Sherpas are known as the backbone of mountaineering, and when I realized no Nepalese was on the list of 8000ers for Winter First Ascent, I felt ashamed. K2 was the last one remaining; if we didn’t conquer K2 this time, we would lose the last one too.
– Winter K2 ascent
In 2021, Mingma G formed his team with two of his strongest Sherpas, Dawa Tenzing Sherpa and Kili Pemba Sherpa, from the same family. In addition, he met Nirmal Purja (Nimsdai), a record-breaker climber and Chhang Dawa during his climb. Together they formed a strong group and made the history of the first-ever winter K2 summit on 16 January 2021. The major publications and national news, including BBC and NatGeo, covered this historic ascent as a hot topic.
I see another peak higher, not satisfied with a fore summit.
– Actual summit
In 2021, an expedition led by Mingma G developed a new route to reach the true summit of Manaslu. The team opened an alternative way that goes down from the fore summit, traverses a slope, and steeply climbs up to the actual summit of Manaslu. The opening of the new climbing route, “Rolwaling Diversion”, was the most covered news worldwide, raising questions about the mountain’s true summit. His technique to open a new way to reach the true summit was praised by alpinist worldwide. The triumphant ascent to the true summit made the fore-summit summiteers repeat for the true summit of a peak. As a result, the climbers in Manaslu multiplied in 2022.
I wanted to prove to the international climbing community that Nepali climbers are also technical when we have to be.
– Chobujee west face in Solo
In the international climbing community, the Sharpas are only known by their profession as supporting their client, making their goal to conquer the mountain. But Mingma G proved that Sherpas climb by work and are passionate about climbing mountains for themselves. On 28 October 2015, risking his life, Mingma G did a first-ever solo climb from the most challenging route of Chobuje. Mt. Chobujee, the 6686 meters peak also known as Khang Tagri, remained on the list of unclimbed peaks in the Rolwaling Vally before Mingma G’s ascent. It is a technically demanding mountain to climb. Technically the west face is even more technical than the south and north ridges. Mingma G’s solo ascent of Chobutse is covered in the famous Alpinist Magazine and broadcasted on Vimeo.
Mingma G made the first-ever successful summit on Nanga Parbat (8,126m) in the autumn season on 2 October 2017, leading a team of three international climbers with the support of two Sherpa in Pakistan. Nanga Parbat is the ninth-highest peak in the world and remained unclimbed in autumn.
At one point, mountaineering becomes an obsession, and you start looking for the edge.
-13/14 8000 meters without O2
Mingma G is the first Nepalese mountaineer to make the most ascent of 8000 meters of mountains repeated without supplement oxygen. From 2007 to 2022, he successfully climbed 13 of the 14 8000 meters peak without oxygen. In his ascent list, the most popular challenging mountains, such as Everest, six summits from both the North and South sides, four summits of Mount K2, two summits on Annapurna-1, Dhaulagiri, Makalu, and Kanchenjunga, five summits of Manaslu and once in other 8000 meters peak except Sishapangma as it had been closed since 2014 due to unsafe condition. His record stood on the top of 8000 meters mountain for the 29th time by 2022. He is patiently waiting for the opening of Sishapangma by the Chinese government to complete his 14 8000 meters mountains without oxygen.
To date, he has also climbed several mountains below 8000 meters, such as Amadablam four times, Cheki-Go, Bamongo, Chobuje, Thorong Peak, Paldor Peak, Larkya North Peak, Island Peak, Pharchemo, Ramdung, Lobuche and Cholo Far East Peak.