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Japanese Climber Again Will Try to Scale Everest

Japanese climber Nobukazu Kuriki poses with a Nepalese flag during a news conference in Kathmandu, Nepal, Aug. 23, 2015.

A Japanese climber was set to begin his fifth solo attempt to reach the summit of Mount Everest on Saturday.

Nobukazu Kuriki, who lost nine of his fingers to frostbite during an earlier attempt to climb the world's highest peak.

He is the only climber pursuing the summit this year after an avalanche set off by a massive quake in April killed 18 people at base camp.

The disaster saw hundreds of climbers abandon their bids to ascend the 8,848-meter peak, marking a second spring season with virtually no one reaching the summit.

Nepal's lucrative climbing industry was destroyed by the April 25 earthquake and avalanches, which killed more than 9,000 people.

The deaths of 16 Nepali guides in an avalanche in 2014 sparked a shutdown that year.

"I'm going to rest ... and will try summit push on 27th," Kuriki wrote in a message posted Saturday on his Facebook page.

Kuriki, who plans to try to reach the summit without the aid of bottled oxygen, is making his fifth attempt in six years to climb Everest.

In 2012, he lost all of his fingers and one thumb after spending two days in a snow hole at 8,230 meters in temperatures lower than minus 20 C.

His injuries present significant challenges in even the most basic climbing maneuvers.