Vail man returns home after successful climb up Mount Everest during busy season

Making it to the top of the world, local climber recounts trip to Mt. Everest

VAIL, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - About a week has passed since Chris Cobb returned home from the trip of a lifetime. Like many others, unpacking his bags hasn’t been his top priority -- spending time with the friends and family he missed has been how he has spent a bulk of his time.

For the last few months, Cobb spent his time climbing Mount Everest until he made it to the very top. The moment is still surreal.

"You process it later. You get up there. You make it -- then it's time to get home," he explained. "That's a sense of accomplishment you know. It's a steady climb, it's a grind."

Each step took persistence.

Cobb was climbing along with hundreds of others during the now infamous Everest traffic jam. A photo of the jam has circulated social media over the last few weeks.

"Everyone was kind of jammed in at the top trying to summit within a couple of days," he said. "We dodged the traffic going up. Coming down was crazy. It was mayhem."

Cobb faced dangerous conditions, opting to do a colder climb at night to avoid the congestion.

It is because of that congestion that not everyone has successfully made it to the top. Eleven people have died on Mount Everest so far in 2019.

"You've got to mentally prepare for that before you leave," he said.

Climbers have to physically prepare, too. Cobb trained for a year, about three hours each day.

Though, he said, the hardest part of the trek wasn’t even battling the elements.

"That delayed it. Made it longer than anticipated," he said. "Being away from family and friends has its own challenges."

He accepted that challenge and is happy to say he conquered it.

Cobb climbed Mount Everest for a good cause.

As a man with a lot of military influence in his life, he chose to raise money for the Fisher House -- a local nonprofit dedicated to helping veterans in our community.

Learn more about Fisher House and the work they do HERE.

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