Sherpa brothers reunite in Upper Hutt after Everest ascent

Brothers Nima and Lama Dawa Sherpa catch up in Upper Hutt a month after Dawa scaled Mt Everest for the fifth time.
Matthew Tso

Brothers Nima and Lama Dawa Sherpa catch up in Upper Hutt a month after Dawa scaled Mt Everest for the fifth time.

After reaching the summit of Mt Everest for the fifth time, adventure is the last thing on Lama Dawa Sherpa's mind during his visit to New Zealand. 

Lama Dawa is in Upper Hutt visiting his brother and his family, and says he is here for a relaxing holiday.

A guide in the Himalayas during the climbing season, which lasts from April to June, he made his fifth successful ascent of Everest on May 16.

Lama Dawa Sherpa, right, and another guide take shelter in a tent during his latest summit of Everest.
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Lama Dawa Sherpa, right, and another guide take shelter in a tent during his latest summit of Everest.

He said although he enjoyed climbing, for him it was a job and he was not tempted to do any recreational climbing while in New Zealand.

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The trekking industry is inherently dangerous and he said he often felt uncomfortable leaving his family behind when taking clients on expeditions, whether it be to Everest or elsewhere in the Himalayas.

Most of Lama Dawa's time in New Zealand will be spent with family and on activities he doesn't get to do at home, like golf, swimming and visiting the beach.

This is his second visit to New Zealand and he said a highlight of his last trip was catching the ferry to Picton and experiencing the sea, an impossibility in land-locked Nepal.

Nima, Lama Dawa's brother, was also involved in the trekking industry for more than 20 years. He is now a New Zealand citizen, having lived here since 2005.

He is a committee member of the Chebouche Area Trust which supports the brothers' home village, for which the trust is named, and the surrounding area.

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The trust provides clothing, funding for housing, solar lighting, and food production.

They have also built a school, provide funding for an English teacher and sponsor scholarships for students.

The trust also raised $35,000 towards rebuilding houses after the April 2015 Nepal earthquake.

Sir Edmund Hillary was a patron of the trust and was a personal friend of Nima.

​Their relationship went back many years and Hillary wrote a letter to support Nima's application for residency with his family.

"He was a great man with a big heart," Nima said of Hillary.

Lady Hillary remains a trust patron.

 - Upper Hutt Leader

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