Former Black Cap Adam Parore says climbing Mount Everest comes with its challenges, not just competing against a large number of other people trying to reach the top.

Today in 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first climbers to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

Now, 66 years later the mountain is in the news highlighting the massive queues and number of deaths of people attempting to climb it.

Speaking to Radio Hauraki's Matt & Jerry show this morning, the 48-year-old said summiting the 8,848m mountain is a hard slog.

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"It's pretty tough mate, I quite like it hard but once you get above 8000 metres you're in the big show there's no question about that," Parore said.

"The danger comes from many different aspects, one of the key risks as you alluded to is standing in a line of people, which is absurd, right?

Adam Parore during his ascent of Mt Everest in May 2011. Photo / Supplied
Adam Parore during his ascent of Mt Everest in May 2011. Photo / Supplied

"You're very hypoxic above 8000 metres, your body operates okay if you keep moving but it's not the sort of place you want to stand still for long periods of time."

He said a trend is forming of more and more people congesting on the mountain near the top and hasn't seen anything like it in his own eyes.

However, the senior guides and their companies have been aware of the issues around congestion on the mountain for some time he said.

"They work together in terms of trying to find windows and manage the circumstances but clearly there are too many people on the mountain," he said.

"The limited margin for error is a lot less once you get up above 8000 metres and so you really do want it all in your favour, there's no two ways about it.

"I'm open to taking risk in my life in generally but a little bit less so above 8000 metres, I become very circumspect."

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Parore reached the summit on May 20, 2011 and since has climbed a number of other high-altitude mountains like the second-highest mountain in the world, K2.

He said he was lucky to have learnt from some of the best climbers around before attempting to climb Everest but in no way was he an expert climber.

His climbing party was lucky on the day of their Everest ascent, getting up at midnight and climbing fast to beat a number of others.

They reached a section of the climb called the Triangle Face and before them awaited a "huge queue" Parore explained.

"We unclipped and free climbed up the face cause we had quite a strong group and got ahead of everybody and then had a great morning," Parore said.

"We left Camp Four at midnight and were on the summit at 5.20am and back down to Camp Four at 9am and in Camp Two having a beer at three that afternoon.

"Some of these people aren't even at the summit at three in the afternoon, it starts to get pretty dangerous - speed is your friend."

Adam Parore receives the adulations of the crowd and the applause of his teammates after New Zealand beat England to square the series at Eden Park in 2002. Photo / File
Adam Parore receives the adulations of the crowd and the applause of his teammates after New Zealand beat England to square the series at Eden Park in 2002. Photo / File

The former wicket-keeper batsman boasts a credible cricket career, including bashing out a Test high score total of 110 runs against Australia in 2001.

He played 78 Test matches for New Zealand, debuting against England in 1990 and playing his last match also against England in 2002.

When asked by Jeremy Wells this morning which achievement was greater, his century against Australia and summiting Mount Everest, Parore struggled to answer.

"I think Everest is pretty hard to go past, that [innings] was sort of the defining sports moment of my life I would say but my memory is pretty foggy on some of that cricket stuff," he said.

"I think the summit is one very small part of it and I think a lot of people who start on the journey start to understand it's not actually about that.

"You can get basically 99 per cent of the experience without getting to the summit."

He told Radio Hauraki he caught the mountain climbing "bug" after catching up with a guide friend of his he hadn't seen for a while.

"Pretty shortly you find yourself in the Himalayas with a big mountain to climb," Parore said.

"Strange series of sequence of events that kind of led me but a sort of life-defining moment I have to say."