It is almost unbelievable in itself that humans climb mountains. More so that they climb mountains for no other reason than to stand at the top. But, of course, there is more to mountaineering than just moving up the side of a cliff. Conquering a mountain is perhaps the ultimate declaration of skill and sheer determination.
Conquer Kilimanjaro In A Wheelchair
Kilimanjaro is the highest peak in Africa, standing at 5,895 meters. In comparison to some other peaks Kilimanjaro is fairly low, meaning that even relatively inexperienced climbers can reach the top. Though, don’t let that fact fool you. The climb is still a gruelling uphill trek that can easily defeat those that are unprepared.
But how about attempting the climb in a wheelchair? South African Bernard Goosen did exactly that. He hit the top of the Kilimanjaro in 2003, managing the entire journey while restricted to a wheelchair. The ascent was achieved in just 9 days. If that wasn’t impressive enough he went back again, managing the second ascent in just 6 days.
Mount Everest Is An Open Grave
There is certainly something to be said for those that are willing to tackle Mount Everest. Lest it be forgotten, around 5% of everyone that attempts the climb dies. A pretty big percentage, especially considering how alarmingly popular extreme mountain climbing has become.
But, do the maths and realise that 5% means around 300 people have died on the mountain. Of that 300 only 100 of the bodies have been recovered, leaving 200 that still remain. This makes Mount Everest the biggest open grave in the world.
To put it another way, unless you’re extremely prepared, best sit climbing Mount Everest out and rather browse Super Bowl odds instead.
Matterhorn Is Very Dangerous
Mount Everest is dangerous, but would you believe that technically Matterhorn is almost as dangerous? Yes, Matterhorn, the peak in Switzerland that even amateur mountaineers can successfully summit.
But, to be clear, Matterhorn is so dangerous only due to its sheer overwhelming popularity. At any given time multiple tourists are attempting to climb simultaneously, meaning that injuries can occur due to carelessness. Where do the rocks go that are dislodged during an ascent? Why, onto the heads of the many climbers further down the mountain, of course.
Annapurna Is A Death Trap
If you thought Mount Everest was dangerous, wait until you hear about Annapurna. The death rate for climbers on Everest is ‘only’ 5%. But anyone attempting to summit Annapurna has a 32% chance of dying. Of the nearly 250 attempts made to climb Annapurna 61 of the brave mountaineers have died. Only 191 attempts have ever been successful.
Paying Respects To George Mallory
Going back to Everest, most know that Edmund Hillary was the first to successfully reach the peak in 1953. But he wasn’t the first to try. George Mallory and Andrew Irvine originally tried in 1924, but both died during the attempt. The incredible part? Mallory’s body was only officially discovered in 1999. The body of Andrew Irvine has yet to be located.