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Skiing Down Everest 92

Posted by michael
from the stupid-things-to-do-before-breakfast dept.
dalibor writes: "Tired of skiing in crowded tourist resorts? Why not ski from the top of Everest, where you can enjoy virgin snow and ski for 4,000 meters? Davo Karnicar from Slovenia is the first to have accomplished a full top-to-bottom ski descent from the world's tallest mountain, Mount Everest! The event was transmited live via the Internet. http://www.everest.simobil.si/" Yahoo has a great report.
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Skiing down Everest

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    The article mentions that he is a father of three. Does anyone else find it irresponsible that he, and any of the other everest climbers, would risk his life for a thrill when he has a family with young children?
  • News for nerds. I love skiing. I'm sure there's a ton of other people out there who read slashdot for the variety of news it carries, not because it is a website devoted to ridding the world of the evil empire microsoft (or sports for that matter).
  • What? I was there too - I rolled down from it last winter. Why didn't I see you?
  • While his wife was pretty thrilled abou him surviving, it is, indeed irresponsible of him. But then again, we're a nation of crazy ppl. Our mountain climbers climb the craziest mountain (read: Dahlaughiri or what ever the name was), so we're used to our climbers not coming back. But, my heart goes out to the family of my late countryman.
  • Um, while I might be ruining a perfectly good marriage here, I'm forced to translate this sentence and hope, that your wife didn't say that to your mother, and told her and you that it was the slovenian way of saying hello. Basically, what is means is "You damned old woman" - and that's a slightly too literal of a translation. Call me if you need help in finding a good divorce lawyer. Dave
  • by zocky (158284) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @09:58AM (#723855)
    err... this guy is not a millionaire. He's not even rich. Everything was paid for by sponsors and some by the state (simobil.si is a cel phone operator).

    I wonder how much money and how many people risk thier lives to go rescue these idiots when they get lost/break a leg/get frostbit/get snowed under/get even less intelligent?

    Well, this was one of several slovenian expeditions in last few years. A couple of guys stayed in the mountain. Nobody risked their life to save them. When you try to climb Everest and you don't come down, people tend to leave you there rather than stupidly risk their life trying to find you.

  • I agree that life does not end when you have kids, but do you seriously mean to compare skiing Everest with crossing the street? Some things are more necessary to everyday life than others and are therefore worth the risk.

    I absolutely love snow skiing - it is easily my favorite sport. But I see the original poster's point. Skiing anywhere is fairly dangerous and Everest is pretty nuts. :)

  • Don't forget the dead bodies.

    Anyone who dies over 7500 mts generally isn't brought down. There are a couple of bodies on the South Col, a few on the North side and a couple more scattered about...

  • IAAC (i am a climber) and it's just not a matter of being irresponsible. i mean but the same logic i guess you would have to find all race car drivers just as irresponsible. moving around at almost 200mph in 1.5 detroit iron with other people in close proximity is not all that safe.

    but they're pro's you say? basically anyone who climbs everest is a pro. and without a doubt anyone who tries something more then just a standard descent doesn't just decide to do it on the way to the top.

  • Ever notice how the real Slashdot members like it, yet the Anonymous Cowards/Pubescent Moderators don't? Well, too bad. King's score of 1 beats out the combined score of the nay-sayers, which is: 0.
  • You see I'd just say it has to do with their breeding.
  • or inbreeding, for that matter.
  • Well that explains why it was all icy and he had such a hard time.

    -Chris
  • by Tony (765)
    The article sez, "..the world's tallest mountain, Mount Everest!"

    Wrong! Wrongwrongwrong! Mt. Everest is the highest mountain. Denali (Mt. McKinley, to all you cheechakos) is the tallest mountain.

    Everest is a mere 11,000 feet tall, a mineral midget in the mountain menagerie. No, Denali is definitely the dominant (word for mountain that starts with 'D'), at 17,000 feet (base-to-peak).

    So, what's the rating on that ski, anyway? Double-diamond?
  • wonderful, another way for some multi-milloinaire to come along and buy his next little merrit badge, ( I skied down everest NO FEAR gear). Whats next? Corporate team building skiing trips? I wonder how much money and how many people risk thier lives to go rescue these idiots when they get lost/break a leg/get frostbit/get snowed under/get even less intelligent?

  • HA! I'd been ignoring you for months, so I wasn't aware of your new M.O. until today.

    I must say, I'm very proud of you ;)

  • i'm waiting for nokia to sponsor someone to climb k2 or everest and make a call off a satellite phone at the top. just wait - it'll happen.

    1. The Meaning of Life [mikegallay.com]
  • no but have you ever had sex while skiing? mmmm x-treme...
  • heh, I've grown sick of /., so now I'm just trying to troll/burn karma, much more fun than coming up with bullshit to post :)
  • by British (51765) <british1500@gmail.com> on Saturday October 07, 2000 @07:32AM (#723869) Homepage Journal
    If he lingers at the bottom of the mountain too long, does that monster come after him and eat him up?
  • It's not the tallest mountain, just the highest point on Earth (tallest mountain 'above sea level' even). The tallest mountain is Mauna Kea, in Hawaii. Everyone knows this... :) :) :)

    -Chris
  • Give him a break. This is an interesting story.

    Personally, I downhill ski. Alot. And I thought this was a very impressive story. One of the primary reasons I read SlashDot is because its different. What's wrong with a "different" story every now and then?
  • I have done a good amount of skiing that most people would qualify as extreme, and let me just say that climbing to the top is always the hardest part. The skiing is the reward for your climb and for your planning. To be honest, Everest probably wasn't that hard to ski. Being the tallest mountain in the world doesn't make it the steepest or the most difficult skiing terrain. I'm sure it was hard, but most people with a solid background in extreme skiing probably wouldn't have too hard a time with it. The hard part would STILL be the ascent. Climbing Mt. Everest, with or without skis on your back, is one of the most dangerous activities a human can do.
  • by Morgaine (4316) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @11:08AM (#723873)
    Does anyone else find it irresponsible that he, and any of the other everest climbers, would risk his life for a thrill when he has a family with young children?

    That's a damn silly question or statement. If having children meant the end of all challange and risk, having children wouldn't be worth living.

    Just about the riskiest thing we do in normal daily life is to drive our cars and/or cross the street, and both of these are very risky in statistical terms despite the fact that we think of them as mundane. Are you suggesting that we give up such dangerous activities when we have children? Are we meant to tuck ourselves away in a cocoon?

    For goodness sake. If anything, it's a stronger argument that one could increase exposure to risk if one were so inclined after having children, since one's genetic inheritance is then already released for posterity. Mind you, I don't buy that either. We're not here for long, so we have to make life worth living whatever our stage in life. That almost always involves risk.
  • Right - although "Biddy" or "Bitch" might be a closer translation than woman - and I was intentionally saying that to the above idiot rather than say "Dober dan" or "Dobre utro" or "Zhivio" or any other common greeting.

    The poster was acting like a whining little bitch, and I called him on it.


    Fawking Trolls! [slashdot.org]
  • Just about the riskiest thing we do in normal daily life is to drive our cars and/or cross the street, and both of these are very risky in statistical terms despite the fact that we think of them as mundane.

    This is virtually a self-fulfilling statement. The risk that I will die climbing Everest, while bungie-jumping, or while sky diving is about as close to 0% as it can be -- I have no plans to do these things because, to me, they are too risky!!

    Therefore, doing those mundane things, like driving my car, sleeping in my bed, playing soccer, etc. most certainly will riskier for me than those other activities.

    However, I really would find it interesting to see what percentage of Everest climbers have died climbing it (% of deaths per climbs attempted) and compare that to the percentage of deaths per trips in cars.

  • now the question is who will be the first person to free dive to the deepest part of the ocean =P~ the world is full of idiots =P~ why induce pain one to thier self inorder to say "hey i was the first to do it" thats like responding to a slashdot poast with the body "first" when ya are really the 3rd post im sure some one did it before but it was probally prehistoric, we should celebrate Uglug the caveman who really did it first cause a dinosaur was chaseing his ass... or maybe it was a prehistoic tux charging at 60mph
    DD..III.EEE.TTT.U.U.X.X
    D D..I..EE...T..U.U..X.
    DD..III.EEE..T..UUU.X.X
  • Shouldn't everybody know by know that Everest is a mere hill, the only *mountain* is K2
  • ehmm im slovenian the translation is close enough but its "Dobro jutro" and "Zivjo".
  • Why then did he not simply jump from a helicopter near the summit?

    :o)

  • Hey, finding a dead body isn't that much of a feat when going down Everest - there is around 120 corpses that remain there. (source:http://www.everest.simobil.si/eng/everestt rivia.shtml)

    Its the worlds highest graveyard..
  • ...when's the lift going in?
  • Suprisingly, the Falls aren't the most dangerous part of the whole trip - it's if you can make it through the rapids that follow, and get yourself out of the whirlpool after that... You can still see barrel pieces in the whirlpool occasionally.

    One woman took her dog with her down the falls, made it through the rapids, and was stuck in the whirlpool for six hours. Her dog found a hole in the barrel and managed to find enough oxygen to survive -- she didn't.

    All I can say is, smart dog.
  • That's one of the sillies things I've ever seen here. I've yet to work with geeks that weren't into sports. Sure, not ALL off them, but most. One of the funnest things I ever did was go on a ski trip with two. . Generally participating more than the average set of fans.

    On a somewhat related, note my Sonners kicked Texas' ass 63-14!
    ---

  • Crap! Shoulda previewed, I meant the Sooners (Oklahoma that is)
    ---
  • "Into Thin Air" and "The Climb" both, IIRC, described some pretty filthy base camps.

    Perhaps things have made a significant change for the better in the past half-decade.


    --
  • well... 51/52 weeks of a year I'm geek. One week is for downhill. Maybe you don't like it, but don't forget, it's very healthy....

    Zumu

    "getting on your binding, and go. Never mind about your company... eeerr... well, they can pay the funeral... :)))

  • not extroverted athletes.

    remember people, "sports is our enemy". it threatens the survival of our intellectual culture.

  • by ShinerMan (233709) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @05:59AM (#723888) Homepage
    "lost two fingers to frostbite when skiing down Everest in a failed attempt in 1996." he may only have 8 fingers, but he has gotta have a big set of balls to make up for it. If I lost a few fingers skiing, I would prolly switch to a different hobby, like... tv
  • Oh, come on. Don't be so anal. This is nerdy. Don't tell me it's not a cool hack to ski down Everest. This isn't football, it's a clever stunt.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    What's up, guys? Going to start the Slashdot Sports Network now?
  • ...going over Niagara Falls in a barrel.

    -Karl
  • by Voltage_Gate (69001) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @06:11AM (#723892)
    How much would a ticket cost?
  • by MrP- (45616)
    i hate sports.. and even if i liked em, id suck at em... id never ski down a mountain... but rolling down one seems fun, maybe ill have to take up the sport "mountain rollin"... hmm i think ill just write some perl instead
  • I can see a very lucrative hot cocoa endorsement coming out of this.
  • by ozric99 (162412) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @06:12AM (#723895) Journal
    And this was on Slashdot because....

    The skier was wearing a GNU range of Slackwear fashion ski clothing, topped off with a Redhat. To get up to full speed he Tux his poles behind him.

    He would have gone faster but his off piste route was Apache one...

    I'll get my coat....

    ozric.net [ozric.net]

  • Maybe the submitter/poster thought this would be interesting to the /. community. They can't always be right, but adding a unique story here and there is nice.

    This guy had to have a lot of tech working for him, ie His modified skis, clothing that would keep him warm but still allow him to ski comfortably, cameras that would work in that weather. (I'm on a 14.4, so I'm not gonna even try to see the video...) I

  • There have already been sat phone calls fromm everest, so it wouldn't be much of a big deal if someone did it again. Not to say sat phone companies don't sponsor climbing teams with equipment...

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • by ArcticChicken (172915) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @07:34AM (#723898)
    I think I've been reading Slashdot at -1 for too long. After reading the Yahoo article and switching to the main site, after a couple of minutes all I could think was, "why can't I find a picture of the mystery frozen body they found?"

    I think I need to get out more.
  • That's pretty stupid to say... Besides my computer all I do (/ want to do) is the 4 "S"s
    1. Sleep
    2. Shower
    3. SPORTS&l t;/li>
    4. Sex

    I probably shoulda bolded the sex part...

    "If you can't beat them, arrange to have them beaten."
    -- George Carlin

  • It is much more fun to waste your time doing something when you accept it for what it is: A waste of time.

    Cheers!

  • Try doing this in Windows
  • by NMerriam (15122) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Saturday October 07, 2000 @07:37AM (#723902) Homepage
    The "trash" isn't as bad as you make it sound. It's oxygen bottles left from a few decades of climbing. No one wants to carry extra weight, so they'd just drop them when they were empty.

    The Nepalese government with private sponsors (like Nike) now pay cash money to anyone who brings a bottle off the mountain, so the sherpas are carrying down well more than are being left. Most of the huge caches of spent bottles have already been taken down by sherpas who want to get extra money...

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • That must have been a pretty interesting ride. However, when I first saw the news item and read it, I could have sworn they were talking about skiing in Everquest!
  • If you can get down to base camp, you'll have to pay the costs of your helecopter rescue to the Nepalese government (not cheap), but it costs $75k just to climb, so you probably have the cash. And there's usually decent medical support from one of the teams (though not always).

    If you can't get down to camp, if you get lost or something, you may have folks come and look for you. But they probably won't find you. No one risks anything they're not willing to lose there...

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • Have you ever tried skiing?? Geeks LOVE skiing!! When Sierra Online started up, their big draw factor for getting programmers was that they could move down and ski as well as code. Skiing is a sport unlike any other.
  • by NMerriam (15122) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Saturday October 07, 2000 @02:08PM (#723906) Homepage
    No, the trash is as bad as he makes it sound.

    The base camps are filthy: litter and human feces. It's freaking disgusting.


    Really? Which team were you on when you went to Everest? While there was the occassional humorous bit of trash (frozen japanese candy from 1973) I didn't see any significant rubbish. And human feces is a strict no-no; every team has been responsible for carting it off the mountain for many years now.

    I've got pictures of the sherpas carrying barrels of feces down from base camp -- not the guy you want to trip and spill his load!

    Every team leaves a significant deposit as part of the climbing permit -- if they don't bring back their own trash and waste they lose the deposit. And you have to pay for a government official to accompany you for the entire time (not cheap) to verify compliance.

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • Why then did he not simply jump from a helicopter near the summit?

    'cause a helicopter can't fly that high (atmosphere too thin) and he'd die in about 5 minutes because he's not adapted to the altitude. Even flying to base camp would kill you.

    That's part of the appeal of Everest: nothing short of putting in the hard work makes it possible. No technology (currently) can make up for simply spending the time and energy and suffering to make it. There is no shortcut but to just do it.

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • Shouldn't everybody know by know that Everest is a mere hill, the only *mountain* is K2

    it would be a hell of a lot harder to ski down for sure!

    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • Current rates are somewhere more than US$50,000.

    I'm wondering when they will build a hotel there. Remember all those cool places out of Bond movies? Those buildings pushed the technology much more than a building high on Everest would today. I figure sometime someone is going to build a nice hotel on Mt Lhotse and provide a nice path to the peak of Everest. With the number of billion dollar hotels now in existance, its only a matter of time.
  • FIRST POST! Pol pa svizec zavije cokolado v folijo! (Translation: And the the hedgehog wraps the chocolate into aluminum foil ) You really should be slovenian to get the joke, but let's just say it's froma commecrcial for - chocolate, one that includes hedgehogs wrapping chocolate into aluminum foil and a geeky guy explaining that to a girl in a supermarket. As I said, you need to be slovenian to get it ;) Sorry... I'm trolling, I know.
  • There is a pretty intense book about Everest. It tells the true story about the events surrounding the tragedy when famous kiwi mountaineer Rob Hall and American Scott Fischer died on a summit attempt on Everest in 1996. - We've got the big "E" all figured out. Legendary climber, Scott Fisher, circa 1995. Mother nature it seems, is not without a sense of irony. The book -- Into thin air. Jon Krakauer.
  • As Spacemoose says: "If it's not extreme, fuck you" [spacemoose.com].
  • It happened in 1970, but no one in the mainstream was interested in using the film footage. Budge Crawley of Crawley films in Ottawa Canada took up the challenge. The film won the academy award for the Best Feature Lenght Documentary in 1976.
  • Then it's irresponsible to be a race driver, a fire fighter, a policeman !
    I bet you his children are damn proud of him..
    We are talking about an exceptional man that achieved something that not everyone can..
  • Their histories are often as chaotic as you can imagine: bad family relationships, broken marriages, out of wedlock children with several different partners, bankruptcies and tax liens, multiple serious car accidents, drug and alcohol problems, fistfighting, and criminal records related to all the above.

    Sounds like your typical Jerry Springer show. North American climbers are not "all the climbers".
  • Bruno Gouvy did it back in the early 90's, ON A SNOWBOARD... shortly after he died by falling in a crevasse in some alp region...

  • The popular spots in the Himalayas *are* getting worryingly filthy. I haven't been in tha Everest area (which btw isn't that hard to access; trekking to Everest Base Camp is hugely popular, it's only going up further that gets hard), but I've been in the Annapurna range, and I was apalled at the amount of junk that litters the paths there. The camp at Thorung Phedi (last stop before the Thorung La, at 4100m or so) is quite dirty. Of course, the view from there more than compensates for it ;)
  • Or what about the time Homer sledded down from the new top of Mt. Springfield using a frozen dead guy. I believe that was the "power sauce bar" episode.
  • (K2) would be a hell of a lot harder to ski down for sure!

    Just remember...

    Go down very very fast. If something gets in your way, turn!

    Still wantin' my two dollars,
    Your Working Boy,
  • Bruno Gouvy did it back in the early 90's, ON A SNOWBOARD... shortly after he died by falling in a crevasse in some alp region...

    I'm guessing you meant that he died in an Alp crevasse shortly after doing this. Not that he did this shortly after dieing. That'd be kinda sick, strapping a body onto a snowboard and whacking it down a mountain. Funny.. but sick.
  • Ti prekleta stara baba! (Ask a Slovenian to translate for you - my wife is, and I'm learning the language.)


    Fawking Trolls! [slashdot.org]
  • by GigsVT (208848)
    This just makes me think of the time Homer fell down the Springfield gorge. Doh DOh Doh Doh DoH doh :)
    -
  • Because I thought it was neat.

    Guy skis down Everest, after having lost two fingers the last time he tried it, with a camera on his head, sees a dead body on the way down, another person who thought they had it in them but didn't.

    You can't tell me that isn't neat.
    --
    Michael Sims-michael at slashdot.org
  • "When it's really cold out, I drink FooBar Cocoa!"

    <lifts mug with three-fingered hand>

    "Cheers!"

    --
    Michael Sims-michael at slashdot.org
  • ... or rather a geek (my preferred term).

    But I also play sports, I imagine quite a few of those here do.
    I also find things other than computers interesting.
    Strangely enough I even believe in God.

    So remember, you do not define what a nerd is, nor what necessarily interests them.
  • And your sherpas, and your canned heat, and your ice ax, and....

    This looks like something that would only appeal to the super-rich, super-naïve, and the super-stupid.

  • No, the trash is as bad as he makes it sound.

    The base camps are filthy: litter and human feces. It's freaking disgusting.

    If things are cleaner, it is only because there has been a strong effort over the past five years to clean up the mess of the previous thirty.

    --
  • You must be thinking of Tribes.
  • Actually, it was in 1970. The movie, however, didn't come out until 1975. :-)

    -pf

  • "Climbing Mt. Everest, with or without skis on your back, is one of the most dangerous activities a human can do. "

    Not true - there are several documented instances of people falling/jumping out of flying airplanes and surviving the impact. This "parachuteless jumping" is probably the most extreme of extreme sports - certainly the odds are way against you, and isn't that the main idea of extreme sports, to do something that, if done wrong, may kill you? All I can say is "Darwin award contender!"

  • Jon Krakauer's book Into Thin Air says, at one point, that ten percent of the people who leave base camp don't come back. Yeah, I'd say offhand that cars are a little safer.

    Of course, that doesn't address the question of whether or not it's necessary to drive your 1-2+ ton chunks of steel around, at least to the extent that people do. The increased risk comes from the number of vehicles on the road, their size, and possibly the increased sense of personal invulnerability on the part of their drivers (not to mention the decreased attention to driving due to yakking on the phone). How necessary is it for a perfectly healthy adult with a perfectly decent bike to drive an SUV to the store on a perfectly decent day for two sacks of groceries? Granted, there's still a huge difference of degree between that and paying $36,000 to have some Sherpas all but drag you up the side of a mountain, but still.

  • No, you won't find multi-millionaires getting little "merrit" [sic] badges by skiing Everest. The only reason you have multi-millionaires climbing Everest is because Sherpas and guides fix ropes which they climb with ascenders. There is no real climbing involved for these clients (though, admittedly, they do have to be tremendously fit.) To ski Everest is a completely different story. You have to be a world class skier, and there are not many of those around. You comment about the rescue of idiots who get lost, break a let, etc., really demonstrates your complete lack of knowledge about the sport of mountaineering. As in most parts of the world, there is no rescue above, say, 20,000 feet. If you get hurt up there, you have to rely on yourself or other party members to help you down. Since you have obviously read too many stories about inexperienced mountaineers being rescued from relatively minor peaks like Ranier, I would also like to point out that something like 90% of all search and rescue costs in the US are for lost dayhikers, children of stupid parents, and the like. Mountaineering accidents and rescues get the press, of course, but are very infrequent compared to the search and rescue of people who go out in the woods once a year.
  • You're right -- the popular trekking spots are fairly dirty, but the EBC is much cleaner than most anywhere else, in part because it's such a "special" place, and fairly remote compared to the standard trekking routes. The through-traffic isn't that bad, it's mostly the climbing teams who are there 24/7 for months on end that will generate trash, and they have a big financial incentive to not leave too much behind...


    I'm an investigator. I followed a trail there.
    Q.Tell me what the trail was.
  • I snowboarded down it last winter.
  • Hehe, cool thanks!
    -
  • "where you can enjoy virgin..."

    Oh no, not another smut page...

    "...snow."

    Phew. That was a close call.

  • by scotpurl (28825) on Saturday October 07, 2000 @06:52AM (#723939)
    So, yeah, first top to bottom, but not first.

    http://us.imdb.com/Title?0073340

    The Man Who Skied Down Everest (1975)
    Documentary

    "A Japanese skier ultimately dreamed of literally skiing Mt. Everest. He planned to ski some 8,000 feet down an icy glacier at a 40 to 45 degree angle, from the 26,000 foot level near the summit. This documentary chronicles this incredible feat and the tremendous task of climbing Everest itself. The narrator reads from the diary that the skier personally kept."
  • I don't see why so many people complaning about this story. For me is one of the best ones in a long time. Not that the other weren't good, they were, but this is diferent from the usual stuff the we re read here.

    Just consider the fact that this story doesen't have any of the usual slashwords attached to it (:cuecat, echelon, linux, windows, NSA, DVD e etc). Isn't this great? :-)


    --
    "take the red pill and you stay in wonderland and I'll show you how deep the rabbit hole goes"
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Tallest mountain in the world, and not only do we leave so much trash behind when we climb it that there are ongoing clean-up efforts to keep it from looking like the city dump, now we've got some guy skiing down it with a camera on his head.

    I dunno, this just seems sort of disrespectful somehow.

To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. -- Elbert Hubbard

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