33% of oxygen in the air, extreme physical and mental exhaustion- yet Everest is a passion for millions of mountaineers across the globe. The highest point on earth where, the climbers can leave their footprints is Everest summit. Literally, the heads of the Everest climbers and Everest skydivers are in the space. The veteran Everest climbers/skydivers whose heads have felt the space speak on Everest.
“Strong motivation is the most important factor in getting you to the top” — Edmund Hillary
Sir Edmund Hillary is the first person to climb Everest with Tenzing Norgay Sherpa on May 29, 1953. A Kiwi National, Hillary is adorned with awards like, Knight Commnader of the Order of the British Empire, Fourth appointee to the Order of New Zealand, Knight Companion of The Most Noble Order of the Grater, Padma Vibhushan (India) Polar Medal (for Trans-Antarctic Expedition), Order of Gorkha Dakshin Bahu 1st Class (Nepal) and Commander’s Cross of the Order of the Merit of Republic of Poland among others.
“It has been a long road … From a mountain coolie a bearer of loads, to a wearer of a coat with rows of medals who is carried about in planes and worries about income tax.” Tenzing Norgay Sherpa
A young Sherpa who began his mountaineering career as a High Altitude Porter in 1930s, Tenzing was a member of several expeditions to Everest before he made the first ever ascent of Everest in 1953 with Edmund Hillary. Born in the far-flung village, Tengboche of Khumbu Nepal, Tenzing is honored with the awards like Geroge Medal and Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Medal by Queen Elizabeth II, the other honors like Order of Star Nepal, Padma Bhusan (India). Times Magazine enlisted him as one of the 100 influential people of the 20th century.
“I can’t understand why men make all this fuss about Everest — it’s only a mountain” — Junko Tabei
In 1975, Junko Tabei followed the route set by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay and became the first woman to summit Everest. Prior to her success she was buried in snow for a while, before she was dug out by a Sherpa guide. At 6,300m, during the Everest Expedition an avalanche struck the team and hence the incident happened. However, Japanese mountaineer, Tabei survived and 12 days later she accomplished the feat.
“Everest? Don’t forget it’s really just a big pile of rocks” —- David Breashears
David Breashears was the one who guided Richard Bass to the Everest summit, thus Bass completed his feat of climbing the highest summits of all seven continents. Five times summiter of Everest David Breashears is an avid cinematographer who has worked in the feature films like Seven years in Tibet, Cliffhanger and Red Flag over Tibet. First American to summit Everest twice is also a four time Emmy Award Winner.
“Everest for me, and I believe for the world, is the physical and symbolic manifestation of overcoming odds to achieve a dream” —- Tom Whittaker
After the amputation of his right foot in 1978, his passion to summit Everest became stronger hence he made his first attempt to summit Everest in 1995. First disable person to climb the Everest, Tom Whittaker accomplished the feat in May 27 1998.
“You’ve climbed the highest mountain in the world. Now what’s left? It’s all downhill from there. You have got to set your sights on something higher than Everest.” — Willi Unsoeld
Honored with Hubbard medal by John F. Kennedy, Willi was the member of first American Expedition Team to Everest summit in 1963. Willi Unsoeld and Tom Hornbein are the legendary names of mountaineering as they were the first one to summit Everest from its west ridge. Willi died in an avalanche while climbing Mt. Rainer.
Also, Everest Skydive have created the possibilities of experiencing the space during the yearly event Everest Skydive which takes place in the Everest Region, during the autumn. Here we have two bonus experiences shared by the veteran Everest Skydivers.
“I hope my action will inspire others living with this illness. I hope many more will follow in my footsteps,”– Marc Kopp
French national, Marc Kopp, successfully completed a tandem dive with his friend, champion skydiver Mario Gervasi setting a record of first disabled to skydive over Everest during the Everest Skydive 2013. The 55-year-old Kopp, living in Longwy northeast of Paris, has suffered the degenerative disease of the nervous system for more than a decade.
“Everest Skydive, the Himalaya is absolutely unique. It is the top of the world and unique to respect or appreciate trekking and acclimatizing to get to the destination where we take off from.”– Wendy Smith
The first skydiver to take the highest free fall during Everest Skydive 2008 Wendy Smith, is very talented photographer and an experienced skydiver with more than 20000 skydives. Kiwi Sky Angel, Wendy is a well known figure in the adventurous world who is also a winner of Emmy Award. Coordinator of the Everest Skydive since 2008, Wendy fell in love with Nepal long time ago.
Dedicated to the mountains , its people and environment and to mountaineers, the International Mountain Museum in Pokhara was built under the aegis of Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA), with the support of various international and national groups, individuals and organizations. The museum was formally inaugurated on May 2002 by famous Everest summitters – Ms. Junko Tabei from Japan and Appa Sherpa from Nepal. Built on 12.6 acres land, with a display area of more than 4200 sq.mt, the International Mountain Museum was opened for public viewing on 5th February, 2004. Posted below are some images of the museum captured by Samir Shrestha.
(Photos : Samir Shrestha)
Nepal Tourism Year (NTY) 2011 was internationally launched at JATA World Travel Fair in Tokyo on World tourism Day(27th Sept).The launch was organized by the Nepal Embassy, Japan, Nepal Tourism Year 2011 (NTY-2011) Secretariat and JATA. During the function, Junko Tabei, the first female to summit Mt. Everest and other Japanese Everest summiteers Yuichiro Miura, Gora Miura and Mikihito Fujimori were appointed as Goodwill Ambassadors in Japan for NTY 2011.Present on the occasion were Ganesh Yonzon , Nepali ambassador to Japan ,Yogendra Shakya, National Program Coordinator for NTY 2011,Kumar Basnet, spokesperson of NRN International Coordination Council and other dignitaries.