In the southern portion of China there is an expansive karst
landscape, formed by the dissolution of soluble rocks such as limestone, dolomite, and gypsum. The region is home to the South China Karst UNESCO World Heritage Site
, which is actually seven different notable features, as well as the visually impressive Moon Hill
, some of China's supercaves
, and Xiaozhai Tiankeng, the world's deepest sinkhole
. You can climb Moon Hill
, but it's best to plan ahead
. You can also explore China's great caves, but it is necessary to explore between October-November and February-March
to avoid the monsoon seasons, and getting down Xiaozhai Tiankeng requires a lot of gear
. You can read more about the Tiankengs (giant dolines or sinkholes) in the karst of China
posted by filthy light thief
on Aug 26, 2014 -
Are your palms nice and dry? Is your stomach failing to churn? Watch Don't Look Down
, a Channel 4 profile of freerunner James Kingston
that follows him to the Ukraine to fulfill his need to make other people nervous by climbing (and doing backflips on) cranes, bridges, and buildings.
posted by item
on Aug 21, 2014 -
Mountain Lab: An Interview With Scott McGuire
"As a form of minor architecture," the resulting short article explained, "tents are strangely overlooked. They are portable, temporary, and designed to withstand even the most extreme conditions, but they are usually viewed as simple sporting goods. They are something between a large backpack and outdoor lifestyle gear—certainly not small buildings. But what might an architect learn from the structure and design of a well-made tent?"
Amongst the group of people we spoke with that day was outdoor equipment strategist Scott McGuire, an intense, articulate, and highly focused advocate for all things outdoors.
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Jun 21, 2014 -
The Value of a Sherpa Life
- Grayson Schaffer reports on Friday's Everest avalanche that claimed the lives of 16 Sherpas in an instant. "And, yes" he says, "there is something that needs to be done about it." In the wake of this devastating tragedy, many Sherpas are threatening a strike
and the government is mulling total closure for the upcoming season, which has 335 permits in the queue. Footage
of the avalanche. Previously, in The Disposable Man: A Western History of Sherpas on Everest
, Scaheffer spoke of the high risks, low pay and shocking mortality rate: "... no service industry in the world so frequently kills and maims its workers for the benefit of paying clients." [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive
on Apr 21, 2014 -
Last weekend, almost 60 years after the first ascent
by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, fights
broke out between three Western climbers and a group of sherpas, at around 7200m on Mount Everest. [more inside]
posted by daveje
on Apr 30, 2013 -
Becoming the All-Terrain Human: [New York Times]
"Kilian Jornet Burgada is the most dominating endurance athlete of his generation. In just eight years, Jornet has won more than 80 races, claimed some 16 titles and set at least a dozen speed records, many of them in distances that would require the rest of us to purchase an airplane ticket. He has run across entire landmasses (Corsica) and mountain ranges (the Pyrenees), nearly without pause. He regularly runs all day eating only wild berries and drinking only from streams."
posted by Fizz
on Mar 23, 2013 -
"Edlinger began to climb. As the last competitor, everyone at Snowbird knew how high he must get to beat his rivals and win the event. With apparent ease, he climbed past their high-points, until pausing beneath a huge overhang that had defeated all-comers. At that moment, a narrow shaft of sunlight pierced the cloud cover and illuminated Edlinger
. When he completed the route, the only one from the world's best to do so, the crowd erupted. Until this point, American climbers had been unsure about competition climbing. After Edlinger, they were converted." - Patrick Edlinger, age 52, died on December 10, after years of battling depression following a near-death fall in the nineties that prevented him from climbing at the same level. [more inside]
posted by Riton
on Dec 23, 2012 -
"As a climber goes up even higher in altitude, into the so-called death zone, the dangerously thin air above 26,000 feet, there is so little oxygen available that the body makes a desperate decision: it cuts off the digestive system. The body can no longer afford to direct oxygen to the stomach to help digest food because that would divert what precious little oxygen is available away from the brain. The body will retch back up anything the climber tries to eat, even if it’s as small as an M&M."
from To the Last Breath: A Journey of Going to Extremes
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Aug 7, 2012 -
Towering over New Hampshire at a height of 6,288 feet, Mount Washington
is the highest peak in the Northeastern United States. It has been ascended by countless hikers from all walks of life, including (for the first time ever) a paralyzed dog
. [more inside]
posted by dhammond
on Sep 22, 2010 -
is a magnificent
, bleak shard
of granite in Argentina's Parque Nacional Los Glaciares
. In the Patagonian summer of early 1959, Cesare Maestri
, Toni Egger, and Cesarino Fava began their attempt to be the first to climb the daunting face of Cerro Torre's northeast ridge
. Halfway up the climb, at the Col of Conquest, Fava gave up and turned back, while Maestri and Egger forged on. Six days later, while packing to leave and despairing of ever seeing his friends alive again, Fava found a half-frozen Maestri wandering alone in the snow at the base of the east face. (more inside)
posted by the painkiller
on Jan 3, 2007 -
Rescuers plan biggest search yet,
using helicopters, a C-130 aircraft, infrared equipment, and scores of volunteers to search for 3 climbers trapped on Mt. Hood. But at what cost in dollars and lives? A 1998 rescue of two climbers on Mt. McKinley cost $221,818. And Mt. Hood
is no stranger to climbing accidents: in 2002, an Air Force helicopter crashed [youtube]
while trying to rescue nine climbers swept into a crevasse. Is it time to revisit the debate over who should pay for dangerous, high-profile mountain rescues? [More inside]
posted by googly
on Dec 16, 2006 -
Todd Skinner falls to his death
Sport and free climbing pioneer/entrepreneur, Todd Skinner, died over the weekend in a 500-foot fall.
Sadly, it appears that his death was from a "..very worn.."
belay loop on his harness.
I met Todd about 10 years ago, and was struck by his warmth and enthusiasm. He spent almost three hours at a dingy Seattle climbing gym with about 10 neophyte femail climbers. He helped us all climb better and have more fun. He was generous with his praise, and offered truly helpful instruction - his ego did not get in the way (unlike many climbing instructors/"stars"). He'll be missed.
posted by dbmcd
on Oct 30, 2006 -