Published on January 23rd, 2015 | by Geckos Tales Team
3 OF EVEREST’S TALLEST TALES
Everest through a monastery window | Photo courtesy of Rupert Taylor Price, Flickr
Mount Everest is famous for being massive. And on the slopes of Everest, scattered across the snow and ice, you’ll also find loads of massive stories.
Some of these stories are triumphant, some are tragic, and some are totally unexpected. Whilst looking for the tragic and triumphant stories, we found a few unexpected ones. So we figured we’d share them with you guys.
1. Granddad goes for a walk
Yuichiro Miura became the oldest person to summit Mount Everest in May 2013. He was 81. The Japanese mountaineer had already scaled the 8,848m peak twice before – once at 70 and once at 75. On top of that, in 1970, Miura became the first person to ski down Everest (from an elevation of 8000m). The dude is out of his goddamned mind. And we like that. You go, Yuichiro.
Bonus fact: In 2012, a Japanese woman by the name of Tamae Watanabe became the world’s oldest woman to scale the mountain. She was 73. Also out of her mind.
2. Rupee, a stray dog with massive cojones
When ex-professional golfer Joanne Lefson found an abandoned puppy starving in an Indian garbage dump, she left it there. Just kidding – what she actually did was take this starving, dehydrated puppy (that could hardly walk) back to her native South Africa and nursed it back to health. She named the eight-month-old pup, Rupee. Good name, wethinks.
In 2013, with Rupee back at full health, the pair set off to Kathmandu with the intention of trekking to Everest Base Camp. Against all odds, they made it to base camp (in one piece) in 10 days. According to Lefson, Rupee led the way the entire time. Naaaaw.
3. A lesson in the art of not missing deadlines
When Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgay became the first to summit Everest on 29 May 1953, it’s not like the journalist accompanying the expedition could use his iPhone to send an email to his team at The Times newspaper back in the UK and let them know.
For the journalist, James Morris (now known as Jan Morris), getting the scoop meant a rapid descent from an altitude of 6,700m in dwindling light conditions. Despite icefalls and nasty slips, Morris kept going with the help of expedition member Mike Westmacott. Hardcore.
The coded message – to avoid other papers getting the story – then had to be forwarded some 32km to Namche Bazaar, where it was telegraphed back to the UK. “Everyone was expecting the news that the Empire was on top of the world,” said Morris in a later interview. “I had to get it through to London”. Morris’ story broke on the morning of Tuesday 2 June, the day of the Queen’s coronation. So next time you think you’re going to miss a deadline, think back to Morris’ story and stop complaining.
Do you want to make your own Everest stories? Sure you do. Check out our range of Everest trips and experience the epic for yourself.