In 1922, while Mallory was leading a group of climbers on the descent from Everest's north while under snow, an avalanche fell on the group, killing seven Sherpas.
On June 8, 1924, George Mallory and Andrew Irvine attempted to reach Everest's summit by step north. The companion of Noel Odell expedition claims to have seen them rise to 12h50m on a main route north of the crest, and "moving strongly towards the top," but no evidence could demonstrate that they have reached the top. They never returned to the camp forward, having succumbed somewhere on the mountain.
On May 1, 1999, an expedition the U.S., sponsored in part by Nova and BBC, found the frozen body of George Mallory at 8000 meters on the north face of Everest. However, they have not located any of the two cameras that he and Irvine had apparently loaded. Kodak Experts said that if one of the cameras was found with his movie, there would be a good chance that the film could be revealed due to the nature of black and white film used and the fact that he had been kept frozen for more than 75 years .
Besides the cameras, two factors noted when the discovery of Mallory's body are important, although not conclusive per se:
Many experienced climbers disagree with the possibility that Mallory would have been able to climb the difficult and the infamous "Second Step" on the north face, now facilitated by an aluminum ladder permanently installed by a Chinese team in 1975 in order to avoid the problem . However, Mallory was known for winning an obstacle rather similar in alpine conditions in Nesthorn Swiss, and his companions had no doubt their ability and motivation.
Even if some evidence is found proving that George Mallory and / or Andrew Irvine reached the summit of Everest that fateful day in 1924, very few believe that history should be rewritten to give them the "first ascent". Climbers generally agree on the fact that a successful ascent requires not only reach the top, but come back alive from there.
"If we admit the fact that they were in the Second Step, they would have been incredibly close to the top of Everest, and I think at this point, something comes over every climber ... So, in view of all these circumstances ... I think it is quite likely that they have tried to reach the top ... I certainly would love to imagine that they actually reached the summit of Everest. I think it's a lovely idea, a deep emotion, you know, yeah, I wish they'd gotten there. If they succeeded or not I think it's something that you can not know "