Nepal’s Magical Mountains
One of the most well known legends concerning Mount Everest revolves around the 1924 climbing expedition by British mountaineers George Mallory and Andrew Irvine. The two were seen making a final ascent to the summit on the afternoon of June 24th, 1924 but were never seen again. It is unknown whether either of the intrepid climbers, unsupported by external oxygen tanks, made it to the summit. It wasn’t until 1999 that members of the Mallory and Irvine Research Expedition discovered Mallory’s frozen body. The purpose of the expedition was to try to locate Mallory’s camera, which may have contained film shot from Everest’s summit.
Nepal is home to eight of the world’s ten highest mountains, with only the second and ninth on the list not being located in the country. Nepalese who come from the more mountainous areas have adapted to the conditions of cold, wind and low oxygen levels to the point that the Sherpas, as they are known, are superb high altitude guides. Most professional mountaineers state that a climbing trip to the higher peaks of the Himalayas is simply not possible without the support and assistance of the Sherpas.
The Himalayan Mountains are the world’s highest mountain range, led by Mount Everest, at 29,028 feet the tallest mountain on Earth. On May 29th, 1953 and after dozens of unsuccessful attempts that ended in tragedy, Sir Edmund Hillary finally conquered Everest with the assistance of his trusted Sherpa guide Tenzing Norgay. Since then, dozens of others have climbed the once un-climbable peak and a unique mountaineering tourist industry has grown up around the mountain.