Nobody climbs mountains for scientific reasons. Science is used to raise money for the expeditions, but you really climb for the hell of it.
The Sherpas play a very important role in most mountaineering expeditions, and in fact many of them lead along the ridges and up to the summit.
I think my first thought on reaching the summit- of course, I was very, very pleased to be there, naturally - but my first thought was one of a little bit of surprise. I was a little bit surprised that here I was, Ed Hillary, on top of Mt. Everest. After all, this is the ambition of most mountaineers.
It's not a real adventure when you have to pay for it.
Mary Doria Russell