Mallory and Irvine, Everest 1924.

jimmywrangles

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In 1953 Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to climb mount Everest, it was an epic undertaking comprised of genius level planning and superb strength from the entire team that resulted in a first ascent and believe it or not no serious injuries to any of the team.(A miracle in itself).
However, 29 years earlier two British climbers set out from base camp on the North side of the mountain and disappeared into history.
Last spotted high on the mountain and climbing strong George Leigh Mallory and Andrew (Sandy) Irvine are forever remembered among mountaineers as the epitome of climbing spirit, they gave their all and failed at the last hurdle...Or did they?
I've followed the story of Mallory and Irvine since 1996 and as the years have passed more and more circumstantial evidence has emerged suggesting that maybe, just maybe they did summit and then died on descent when a rope snapped sending Mallory sliding down the steep Nth face and leaving the inexperienced Irvine alone with no way down.
In 1999 an expedition set out to solve that question, they would search high on the Mountain with team of some of the worlds best climbers and against all odds a climber named Conrad Anker found a body wearing hobnail boots.
He knew immediately it must be one of the two climbers from 1924 and expected it to be Irvine but much to everyones surprise it was Mallory himself, frozen in place,face down, hands outstretched trying to arrest a fall, dead for 75 years.
Controversy has surrounded their disappearance since 1924 when a fellow team member Noel Odell said he saw them ascend a steep step before the final summit pyramid and proceed strongly towards the onwards before clouds blocked his view, there are 3 steps on the Nth route but when you read Odells account carefully he could only have meant the third step and once you've made it past the third step it's just a very steep walk up snow until you're on the summit, something Mallory would have been more than capable of doing given his very high skill levels.
So... it's a mystery and has been for almost 100 years but a part of me thinks they made it, a part of me wants them to have succeeded but I'll never know for sure.
Rest In Peace George Leigh Mallory and Sandy Irvine, gone but never forgotten.
 

Thoughtfree

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A great story. What a forbidding locale. I do not want to climb Mount Everest, though Google tells me that currently 4,000 people have made the summit.
 

Flaneur

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5000.jpg


What a commercial circus, this has become. Mallory was a pioneering Alpinist, of great skill- but this is what his achievements have led us to. A sad indictment, of modern values.

I too, hoped that the camera would have yielded answers. Seems like it didn't, which is no surprise.
 

jimmywrangles

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View attachment 987982

What a commercial circus, this has become. Mallory was a pioneering Alpinist, of great skill- but this is what his achievements have led us to. A sad indictment, of modern values.

I too, hoped that the camera would have yielded answers. Seems like it didn't, which is no surprise.
Cool photo of the Hillary step, as of 2015 the step no longer exists, the two main rocks that formed it fell off the mountain during an earthquake, It's just a steep snow slope now and is a little bit safer.
 

Stanford Guitar

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Cool photo of the Hillary step, as of 2015 the step no longer exists, the two main rocks that formed it fell off the mountain during an earthquake, It's just a steep snow slope now and is a little bit safer.
The Hillary Step is gone in this photo.

The way to make the mountain safer, less polluted and crowded, is to disallow supplemental oxygen.
 

aging_rocker

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I've always been fascinated by the story of Mallory and Irvine. Maybe one day the truth will be uncovered, but I like to think that they actually made it to the top.
 

jimmywrangles

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I've always been fascinated by the story of Mallory and Irvine. Maybe one day the truth will be uncovered, but I like to think that they actually made it to the top.
I'm pretty certain at least one of them made it. Mallory was a superb climber and the hardest part of the route was behind them.
But to claim a first ascent you have to survive the descent so Hillary and Tenzing are and always will be the first but it's an amazing mystery.
 

KeithDavies 100

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God, I love this forum!!! You never know what you're going to end up reading/discussing! Last week it was the fact we lose weight by exhaling. (Seriously - I checked it out. Can't remember the thread though. Google it! Well, not quite seriously - I'm over-simplifying facetiously, but basically when we lose weight a lot of it is actually discharged from our bodies as carbon dioxide when we exhale.)

Anyway - I, too, have always like to believe they made it to the top and died on the way back down. I wasn't previously aware of the Chinese stuff. That article @beyer160 posted is fascinating.

And @Flaneur 's photo! That's just a shaking head emoji, isn't it?!

There was a documentary a while ago in which an ex-UK Special Forces guy, Ant Middleton climbed Everest, and he was struck by people who were there who were just woefully under-prepared. At one point they were struggling to climb a ladder, and he said to a couple of them they needed to go back down and train more, or they were putting their own and others' lives at risk doing this.
 

johnny k

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That modern pic blows my mind, to think it's that crowded but people are still dropping dead up there
It is photoshoped ? There can't be that many people ... Fun part is that these hikers leave a lot of their trash behind them.
 

johnny k

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God, I love this forum!!! You never know what you're going to end up reading/discussing! Last week it was the fact we lose weight by exhaling. (Seriously - I checked it out. Can't remember the thread though. Google it! Well, not quite seriously - I'm over-simplifying facetiously, but basically when we lose weight a lot of it is actually discharged from our bodies as carbon dioxide when we exhale.)

Anyway - I, too, have always like to believe they made it to the top and died on the way back down. I wasn't previously aware of the Chinese stuff. That article @beyer160 posted is fascinating.

And @Flaneur 's photo! That's just a shaking head emoji, isn't it?!

There was a documentary a while ago in which an ex-UK Special Forces guy, Ant Middleton climbed Everest, and he was struck by people who were there who were just woefully under-prepared. At one point they were struggling to climb a ladder, and he said to a couple of them they needed to go back down and train more, or they were putting their own and others' lives at risk doing this.
Exactly what i was thinking. I am out of breath climbing 2 staircases, why would i want to climb 4 000 m high ?
 




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