The Notable Stories Of Survival On Surreal Mount Everest
Mount Everest, world’s highest mountain peak, has always captivated adventurers, mountaineering enthusiasts, and ordinary citizens alike. Its staggering height and extremely unforgiving conditions make climbing it one of the most challenging tasks imaginable. Throughout the years, there have been countless tales of triumph, tragedy, and survival associated with Mount Everest. Here are some of the notable stories of survival that truly encapsulate the human will to endure against all odds.
Lincoln Hall’s Extraordinary Survival
In 2006, Lincoln Hall, an experienced Australian mountaineer, reached the Everest peak but faced life-threatening challenges during his descent. He developed cerebral oedema, a severe form of altitude sickness, and was declared dead by his team who were physically unable to carry him down. Astonishingly, a day later, another team found him alive, albeit frostbitten and delirious. After spending a night at 8700m without a tent or sleeping bag, Hall was rescued and lived to tell his tale, defying all odds and medical expectations.
Beck Weathers’ Miraculous Survival Story
The tragic 1996 Mount Everest Disaster saw eight climbers lose their lives in a snowstorm. In the midst of that catastrophe, Beck Weathers, an American pathologist, displayed outstanding resilience. Left for dead by his team after he went snow-blind and fell unconscious, he woke up a day later alone in the deadly storm. Despite his dire state, Weathers managed to stagger into Camp IV half frozen and deathly ill. His frostbitten hands and nose were later amputated, but he survived to tell his incredible tale of resilience and determination.
The Extraordinary Tale of Yasuko Namba
Japanese mountaineer Yasuko Namba was another climber caught in the 1996 disaster. Although she isn’t a survival story, what she did to survive as long as she did deserves acknowledgment. Despite severe exhaustion, she managed to continue descending after reaching the summit with a severe storm underway. While she did eventually succumb, the fact that she managed to fight on for so long despite her physical condition was remarkable.
Survival of Aron Ralston
Aron Ralston’s incredible survival saga might not have occurred on Mount Everest, but it is a tale worth mentioning in the annals of notable stories of survival. Ralston, who was hiking in Utah’s Canyonlands National Park, was trapped under a fallen boulder and remained so for five days. Eventually, he amputated his lower right arm with a dull knife to free himself. His grit and willpower eventually led to a successful hike to Mount Everest in 2008.
Mount Everest, with its exhilarating and unforgiving terrain, consistently pushes the boundaries of human resilience, strength, and determination. The stories of survival remind us of the innate human ability to withstand monumental adversities and come out on top. But they also serve as sobering reminders of the extreme risks associated with mountaineering and the need for thorough preparation and caution.
1. Who was the first person to climb Mount Everest?
Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Tenzing Norgay, a Sherpa of Nepal, were the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest on 29 May 1953.
2. How many climbers have died on Mount Everest?
As of the end of the 2019 climbing season, the Himalayan Database has recorded that 307 people have died on Everest since 1921.
3. What are the main dangers of climbing Mount Everest?
Climbing Mount Everest involves many risks such as altitude sickness, extreme weather conditions, wind, avalanches, icefall and crevasse danger, and physical exhaustion.
4. What is the death zone in Mount Everest?
The death zone in mountaineering, above about 8,000 meters (26,000 feet), is the altitude where the amount of oxygen is insufficient to sustain human life for an extended time span. This is the region on Mount Everest that poses the most risks.
5. What happens to dead bodies on Mount Everest?
Most bodies of deceased climbers on Mount Everest are left behind due to the difficulties and dangers of retrieval. Many are buried under snow and ice, but some are visible and have even served as landmarks for other climbers.
6. What is the best time to climb Mount Everest?
The best time to climb Mount Everest is typically early May, before the monsoon season. The window of good weather is often very short, which can lead to bottlenecks of climbers, further increasing the danger.