Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sir Edmund Hillary, the climber who, with Nepal's Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, first reached the summit of Mount Everest in 1953, has died. Hillary was 88. Most arguably the most famous New Zealander, Hillary went on to live a life full of expeditions (including to the South Pole) and philanthropy. His Himalaya Trust gave approximately $250,ooo US annually to benefit the people of the Himalaya. The last great obstacle on the final ridge to the Everest summit, a 40 foot rock, is named the Hillary Step after him. Today, the rock remains a formidable challenge before the summit despite the climbing ropes anchored there year after year. When Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing encountered it in 1953, wearing clothing and oxygen tanks much more cumbersome then their modern counterparts, "Hillary "jammed" his way up a narrow crack running vertically up the rock using all his strength and determination and then hauled Tenzing up and they moved on with little to impede them."

The article I read on Hillary's death stated, "For years neither (Hillary nor Tenzing) would say who stepped foot on the summit first, but after Tenzing's death in 1986, Hillary revealed it was him." I'm still not sure that answers the question. "Him" who? Hillary or Tenzing?

Although I set my alarm for 6am this morning in an attempt to go snowboarding, I just couldn't bring myself to get out of bed. I finally did around 10am and decided I might as well head up anyway, which I did for just a couple of hours. Boy, the snow sure didn't look anything like it did on Sunday! It was still a fun afternoon. Now Wally and I are going to kick back and watch more Dead Like Me, Season 2 on DVD.


Anonymous lemaster said...

I had the honor of meeting Sir Edmund and hearing him lecture when I was in Antarctica. He was a great man who led an amazing life.

12:40 PM  
Blogger EditThis said...

lemaster - That's amazing! I had no idea.

12:51 PM  

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