7 Thrilling Mount Everest Tales
The hard and perilous climb to the summit of the world’s tallest mountain has produced some truly incredible stories. Today we present to you seven of the most thrilling Mount Everest tales. Number 7: Yuichiro Miura Yuichiro Miura was born on the 12th of October 1932. It would seem like Miura, who is currently 85-years-old, has practically dedicated his life to achieving the impossible on Mount Everest. In 1970 he skied down the mountain’s South Col, from an elevation of over 26,000 feet, after an ardous trek.
In 2 minutes and 20 seconds he had skied 6,600 feet when he fell 1320 feet from the Lhotse face. Miura slowed his descent by using a large parachute and came to a full stop only 250 feet from the edge of large, deep crevasse. His exploits were documented in the 1975 film ‘The Man Who Skied Down Everest’ by Canadian film maker Budge Crawley. The film was the first sports documentary to ever win an Academy Award. In 2003, when Miura was 70 years old, he became the oldest person to summit Mount Everest. His record was subsequently broken. In 2006 and 2007, he had 2 surgical interventions for cardiac arrhythmia. Despite his advanced age and the surgeries that he had gone through, Miura would make history again on the 23rd of May 2013, when he took back the title of oldest person to reach the top of Mount Everest. He was 80 years old and his remarkable feat is listed in the Guinness Book of Records. After summiting, Muira was not able to make the descent and he was airlifted from the Advanced Base Camp, at 21,325 feet. As of 2017 Muira has stated an intention of celebrating his 90th by once again summiting Mount Everest.
Number 6: Anshu Jamsenpa 32-year-old Anshu Jamsenpa made history as the first woman in the world to reach the top of Mount Everest twice in 1 season. Incredibly, her 2 ascents took place in the space of only 5 days. Anshu Jamsenpa is from Bomdilla, in Arunachal Pradesh, the Indian state that occupies the country’s most north-eastern position. She has 2 daughters and her husband is the president of the Arunachal Mountaineering and Adventure Sports Association. Anshu Jamsenpa started her first Everest climb on the 2nd of April 2017, after taking the blessings of the 14th Dalai Lama. At the Everest Base Camp, located at an altitude of 17,600 feet she took the 38 days schedule for acclimatization. She then started her main expedition and reached the summit on the 16th of May 2017, along with 17 other climbers. On the 19th of May she started her second arduous trek alongside Nepali climber, Furi Sherpa. She climbed almost without rest until 10 pm. She conquered the 29,029-foot peak on the 21st of May. Amazingly this was not Anshu Jamsenpa’s first double ascent. In 2011 she climbed to the top of Mount Everest twice within the span of 10 days. She is the first woman and also the first mother to complete two double ascents.
Number 5: Selina Dicker Selina Dicker has escaped debt twice while climbing Mount Everest. In 2014, during her first attempt to summit the mountain an avalanche skilled 16 Sherpas that were ahead just ahead of her, while she was at Base Camp. Despite her near debt experience, the then 38-year-old decided to make another attempt at reaching the summit. In April 2015, a catastrophic earthquake hit the mountain causing massive avalanches that claimed the lives of 22 people. Additionally, 120 people were injured or declared missing as a result of the avalanches. Selina Dicker cheated debt once more by outrunning the wave of rock and snow that swept the Base Camp. The April 2015 Earthquake was one of the worst natural disasters to ever hit Nepal. Almost 9,000 people were skilled, 20,000 were injured and entire villages were flattened.
Number 4: Hannelore Schmatz “It’s not far now. I cannot escape the sinister guard. Approximately 100 meters above Camp IV she sits leaning against her pack, as if taking a short break. A woman with her eyes wide open and her hair waving in each gust of wind…..it feels as if she follows me with her eyes as I pass by. Her presence reminds me that we are here on the conditions of the mountain.” That is how one climber described the encounter with the frozen body of Hannelore Schmatz, a German climber that cried on her descent after summiting Mount Everest in 1979.
The Sherpas had urged the woman to continue the descent but she laid down to rest and never got up again. Climbers once called the popular South East Ridge Route to the top of Mount Everest “Rainbow Valley” due to the numerous frozen courts is that littered the route, all dressed in colorful climbing gear. 5 years after Hannelore Schmatz cried on the upper slopes of Mount Everest, Sherpa Ang Dorje and Yogendra Bahadur Thapa tried to recover her body, located at an altitude of 27,000 but fell to their debts after their ropes got tangled. For years climbers had encountered the woman’s body on their way to the summit, until the wind blew it off the edge of the mountain. Number 3: ‘Green Boots’ Many of those who have summited Mount Everest have described how strenuous the climb can be on the mind and body.
For a number of adventurers, the mountain has represented a final resting place. Removing their bodies is not common as the procedure is expensive, difficult and dangerous. Up until 2014, climbers who took the North Cole route to the top of Mount Everest would inevitably pass “Green Boots,” one of the mountain’s most infamous land marks. “Green Boots” is the frozen courts of a climber whose identity was never confirmed but whom many believe to be an Indian man named Tsewang Paljor. The curled body rests at an altitude of 27,900 feet. When the man cried he was wearing a pair of brightly colored climbing boots and that is where the nickname “Green Boots” came from. The expedition to the summit that Parljor was a part of was reportedly marred by mistakes and only yielded 1 survivor, a man named Harbhajan Singh. According to Singh, he had urged the other members of the expedition to abandon the climb as the weather conditions were no longer favorable.
Singh believes that they had succumbed to “summit fever.” “Summit fever” is a term used by climbers to describe the moment when people abandon thoughts of self-preservation, safety and often their own morals because they are close to the summit and the drive to reach it becomes very strong. Paljor and the other men did manage to reach to the top but encountered a massive blizzard on the way back down and ultimately lost their lives to the brutality of the mountain. For almost two decades “Green Boots” served as a macabre trail marker by which climbers would determine how far they were from the summit. In 2014, Green Boots was reported missing and people assumed that he had been removed or buried. In 2017, however, he was noticed again at 27,900 feet and the courts were buried there. Number 2: Maurice Wilson Maurice Wilson was a British eccentric who attempted to climb Mount Everest in 1934 as a platform of promoting his beliefs that the world’s ills could be cured by a combination of faith in God and fasting. His initial plan was to crash an airplane into the upper slopes of Mount Everest and then climb to the summit.
Wilson had no experience as a mountaineer or as an aviator and he set out to learn more what would be needed for his bold expedition. He bought a Gypsy Moth aircraft and crashed it in a field near Bedford. The Air Ministry forbade him from making the flight to India. Wilson ignored the ban and 2 weeks later he landed in India despite several attempts of stopping him made by the British Government. He did not get permission to enter Tibet on foot and spent the winter in Darjeeling, where he met 3 Sherpas that had taken part in the 1933 Everest expedition led by Hugh Ruttledge. They agreed to accompany him. On the 21st of March 1934 they left Darjeeling disguised as Buddhist Monks and reached the Rongbuk Monastery on the 14th of April. Wilson was warmly received and offered access to equipment left behind by the 1933 expedition. After 2 days, Wilson left to begin his Everest expedition alone, despite his lack of mountaineering expedition and proper equipment. He documented the attempt in his journal.
He found the climb up Rongbuk Glacier very difficult and constantly had to retrace his steps. In his journal he wrote “It’s the weather that’s beaten me – what damned bad luck”. He began the 4-day trek down the glacier and returned to the monastery snowblind, exhausted and in great pain from a twisted ankle and previous war wounds. After he recovered, he set off again, this time accompanied by the Sherpas. The expedition came to a halt at around 22,700 feet, when they encountered a 40-foot ice wall.
The Sherpas urged Wilson to go back to the monastery with them, but he refused. He made another attempt at reaching the summit alone on the 29th of May and the last entry in his journal was dated May 31, and simply read “Off again, gorgeous day.” Wilson’s body was discovered the following year at the foot of the North Col by a small reconnaissance expedition lead by Eric Shipton. The body was lying on a side in the snow surrounded by the remains of a tent. His journal was found in a rucksack nearby. Number 1: Marco Siffredi For extreme sports enthusiasts, snowboarding down Mount Everest may be regarded as the culmination of a lifelong dream. French snowboarder and mountaineer Marco Siffredi hailed from a climbing family. His brother had died in an avalanche in Chamonix and his father was a mountain guide. After descending a number of peaks in the Chamonix valley he decided to set his goals higher. In June 1999, when he was 20 years old, Siffredi descended the highly-coveted Nant Blanc on the Aguille Verte via snowboard.
The Nant Blanc is 3280-foot line that averages 55 degrees, with several 60-degree portions. At that time it represented the first snowboard- and the second ever Nant Blanc-descent, after Jean Marc-Boivin’s 1989 epic ski descent. In 2001, Siffredi became the first person to snowboard down Mount Everest. He reached the summit of the 29,035-foot mountain on the 23rd day of May 2001 aided by 2 Sherpas who carried the equipment and with the help of oxygen.
Siffredi had initially intended to snowboard down the Hornbein Couloir, which he considered to be the “Holy Grail” of snowboarding. Weather conditions and the fact that the Hornbein Couloir did not have enough snow on it prevented him from doing so, and he rode down the Norton Couloir instead and he reached the Advanced Base Camp at the foot of the North Col, even after the intense cold had caused one of the fastening straps on his snowboard to break. Despite this incredible achievement, Siffredi was still not satisfied. At the beginning of August 2002, he returned to Nepal. He was aware that it was late in the season for a climb to the summit of Mount Everest but hoped that the coveted Hornbein Couloir had more snow on it. Siffredi and the three Sherpas he had left Katmandu with reached the advanced field at 27,230 feet, on September 7. They reached the summit after a grueling 12-hour push on the 8th of September 2002. According to Phurba Tashi, one of the Sherpas that had climbed with him, Siffredi was very tired and showed little enthusiasm for having reached the summit.
Siffredi had only rested for one hour before he began making his way towards the Hornbein passage. The weather began to worsen and Siffredi’s companions urged him not to go, but the Frenchman ignored their warnings. The Sherpas periodically lost sight of him. 2 of them reportedly saw the image of a man standing up and then sliding down the mountain, at the North Col, about 4,265 feet below Camp Three. They reached the point of the sighting but did not discover any tracks. Marco Siffredi was never seen again, and his body was never found..
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