It's True! Everest Kills by Kim Wilson, Andrew Plant

By Kim Wilson, Andrew Plant

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It took him 45 minutes to do this, by which time frostbite had set in. When he got down from the summit, he had to have five fingers amputated. 49 Image rights unavailable 5 THE RACE TO THE SUMMIT After Mallory and Norton and the other heroes of the 1920s got so close, it took almost 30 years for the race to the summit to finally be won. Why so long? Well, there was the huge cost of expeditions, and the difficulty of getting permission to enter from the Nepalese king. Also, many of the best young climbers were killed (or at least busy fighting) in World War II.

55 After a long, freezing, fearful night the sun came up, the clouds rolled in and the weather got worse. Lambert and Tenzing struggled on to a point only 240 metres below the summit but, utterly exhausted, they made the tough decision to turn back. Mount Everest was still unclimbed . . THE BRITISH ATTEMPT - 1953 The British team were elated by the failure of the Swiss expedition. They knew 1953 was probably their last chance to win the race to the top as the Nepalese government had promised a permit to the French for 1954 and the Swiss for 1955.

They had found the famous man himself, 75 years after he died. Before the climbers buried Mallory’s body under rocks, they checked his pockets and found sun goggles, an altimeter, a pocket-knife and some letters. But there was no photo of his wife Ruth. 34 Had he made the summit and put the photo there? Was he the first man to stand on the summit of Mount Everest? Without Irvine’s body (or, more importantly, the camera he was carrying) we’ll probably never know. AIR AND FEATHERS On the 1922 expedition with Mallory was an Australian called George Finch.

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