Following the deadly avalanche that killed at least 13 people, the Discovery Channel has realized that a live jump off the summit of Mount Everest is just a bad, bad plan and has cancelled the special.
"In light of the overwhelming tragedy at Mount Everest and out of respect for the families of the fallen, Discovery Channel will not be going forward with Everest Jump Live," the network wrote on its website. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the whole Sherpa community."
Joby Ogwyn was to jump off Everest in a wing suit on May 11. On Friday, while the climbers and camera crews waited further down the mountain, 25 Sherpas set up ropes and cleared paths to prepare for the coming season. Sixteen of them disappeared under the avalanche; 13 bodies have been recovered so far and three are still missing. It was the deadliest day in Everest's history. Considering that this is a place with a "rainbow valley," named after the visible brightly-colored winter coats on the bodies scattered all over the mountain, that's saying a lot.
Ogwyn was not hurt in the avalanche, but said his Sherpa team was killed. "These men were the salt of the Earth," he wrote on his Facebook page. "Far better men than me. My heart is broken."
Before the avalanche, Ogwyn said his expedition was shipping more gear to the base camp than any other expedition in history, which is something everyone wants to hear when there are already an estimated 50 tons of garbage on the mountain. He also posed with 90 kg (that's almost 200 pounds) pack of equipment that a Sherpa was carrying to base camp for him. As Ogwyn would never be able to make it up the mountain without Sherpas, it's doubtful he would have been able to continue with the show anyway.
The search for the three Sherpas still missing has ended, with the men deemed "not possible to find."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.