Mount Everest – The Summit Climb

My goal was to create a video that would transport viewers to the summit of Mt. Everest. No music. No sound effects. No slow motion. No extreme wide angle helmet-cam footage. Just the raw sound of the environment, the flow of oxygen being inhaled through climbers’ masks and the deep struggle and gasps for air as each person endures, suffers and ultimately prevails.

My goal on the final night was to shoot as much of the summit route as possible, position myself on top of the famous Hillary Step and record the climbers scaling the iconic cliff on top of the world.

It was exhilarating and surreal to film the team members ascending the Hillary Step with my Canon 5D in hand. I planned this sequence for months and there I was, with zero margin of error, just a few meters shy of the top of the world. A single mistake would cost me my life. Once the team passed me, I filmed them straddling the saddle rock and realized I needed to pass over 10 climbers on the summit ridge in order to position myself on top of the world to film their arrival.

The final climb to the summit of Mount Everest was recorded by climber Elia Saikaly on the 25th May 2018. Experience what climbers endure on their final push to the top of the world.

Video by Elia Saikaly