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77 years old Nepalese became the oldest climber of Mt.Everest : A Nepalese climber has become the oldest person to summit the world's highest mountain, breaking the previous record held by a Japanese man, officials said Sunday May 25th, 2008. The previous record was held by a retired Japanese school teacher Katsusuke Yanagisawa, 71, who conquered Everest last year 2007.
Last week, 48-year-old Appa Sherpa broke his own world record by getting to the summit of Mount Everest for the 18th time.

Nepal Government assigns TAAN to implement Trekking Registration Certificate (TRC) now becomes TIMS
Registration Required for trekkers

With a view to checking illegal operations in the trekking industry and ensuring safety and security of trekkers, the Nepal Government has introduced a new rule that requires all trekkers to go on trekking in various parts of the country only through registered trekking agencies after obtaining a Trekking Registration Certificate (TRC) from Trekking Agents Association of Nepal (TAAN). As an umbrella organization of more than 550 registered trekking companies of Nepal, TAAN has been authorized by the Nepal Government to issue TRC and the new rule is scheduled to come into force from October 1, 2006. TAAN will charge a minimum amount of money as administrative and service fee for issuing TRC. As a record of trekkers, TRC incorporates their personal details, trekking routes, duration, etc. The provision is introduced in order to upgrade the service standard and for better management of sustainable mountain tourism development in Nepal. Trekking without TRC is illegal and subject to charge fines and other punishments in accordance with the laws of the Nepal Government.
Importance and Necessity of TRC ( TIMS)

It is very important to have a kind of monitoring and facilitating system in place for any sort of outdoor activity that involves physical risk. Trekking is a major outdoor activity in Nepal's mountain tourism. Given the rugged physical condition and remoteness of almost all trekking areas of Nepal's Himalayan mountain region, a record system is very essential that would be helpful in monitoring the safety and security of trekkers. The past experiences have shown that difficulties have been faced while carrying out rescue operations promptly during the times of natural calamities. Because of lack of proper record system of trekkers, their exact whereabouts and the information about trekking routes, rescue and search missions used to face difficulties in spotting the trekkers missing.

The Nepal Government is very serious about implementing TRC as a mechanism to control all sorts of anomaly, including illegal operations, and to ensure safety and security of trekkers. Therefore, TAAN, as a national tourism organization working in the field of sustainable mountain tourism in Nepal, has been entrusted with the responsibility of implementing TRC. As per TAAN’s proposed hassle-free procedure, TRC is being issued to each and every trekker traveling only through the registered trekking agencies.

The decision regarding the introduction of TRC is a welcome step taken in its policies and programmes by the Nepal Government. So, TAAN is in the process of developing a well-managed and efficient system with nominal service charge of Nepali rupees 250 (equivalent US$ 3.5 only) to implement TRC in the open trekking areas of Nepal. TRC is going to be issued from convenient locations of Kathmandu and Pokhara.

TRC Issuing System

The following considerations have been taken into account in the process of issuing TRC:

1. All important details of trekkers and trekking routes will be maintained on a computerized record system that may be useful for safety and security of trekkers and field-staff.

2. The data generated from the system will be useful to all stakeholders -- tourism organizations, government agencies, diplomatic missions, tour operators, research institutes, etc.

3. Unauthorized trekking operations will be controlled, thus, resulting into better management of trekking service and in benefit of all concerned - trekkers, agencies, field - staff, government, etc. and also occasional untoward incidents will be better prevented.

4. TAAN will be able to work more in its effort of preservation of natural and cultural environment in cooperation with local communities. This, in turn, will enable to promote sustainable tourism.

5. The issue of TRC will be so simplified that it would be prompt and inexpensive. The convenient TRC counter in Kathmandu will remain open 12 hours a day all the seven days a week round the year. Pokhara counter will be opened for 9 hours a day. The TRC counters will be located close to the counters of the National Parks and Conservation Areas.

6. TAAN’s Media Centre will have updated information about the conditions of trails and other relevant insights into the trekking areas. The same information also will be updated frequently in the TAAN's web page. Some of the check posts along the trekking routes will be equipped with telephone services by TAAN.

TRC Regulatory Provisions

1. Trekkers must keep Trekking Registration Certificate (TRC) along with them while trekking.

2. TRC must be shown to TAAN authorities, National Park check posts, Conservation Area Project's check posts and police check posts on demand.

3. Deviation from the prescribed trekking areas shall be taken as a violation of law of the Government of Nepal

4. Trekkers must keep their copies of passports along with them during trekking for verification.

5. TRC shall be non-transferable, non-refundable and non-endorsable and valid only for single entry.

TAAN also requests all concerned stakeholders to help disseminate the above information to potential trekkers to Nepal and other related offices and agencies. Any inconvenience that may arise due to implementation of this new rule is regretted. Thank you for your kind support and cooperation.
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