Imja Tse was first climbed in 1953 by a British team as a training exercise in
Mount Everest. Tenzing Norgay was one of the members of this
first ascent team.
To climb Island peak, one has the option of starting from a base camp at 5,087m
(16,690 ft) called Pareshaya Gyab and starting the climb between 2 and 3 am.
Another popular option is to ascend to High Camp at around 5,300m (17,390 ft) to
reduce the amount of effort and time needed for summit day.
However, adequate water supply and concerns about sleeping at a higher
altitude may dictate starting from base camp. Base camp to high camp is
basically a hike but just above high camp, some rocky steps require moderate
scrambling and up through a broad open gully. At the top of the gully, glacier
travel begins and proceeds up to a steep snow and ice slope. From here, fixed
ropes may be setup by the guides for the strenuous ascent of nearly 100 metres
(320 ft) to the summit ridge. The climb to the summit is somewhat difficult due
to steep climbing.
On top, while Mount Everest is a mere ten kilometres away to the north, the
view will be blocked by the massive wall of
Nuptse, towering 1,700 metres (5,500
ft) above the summit.