The office has been abuzz with talk of adventure this week...
One piece of news that might have gone unnoticed during the festive season was the death of Maurice Herzog, at the ripe old age of 93. Hertzog was the first man, along with climbing partner Louis Lachenal, to successfully summit an 8000-metre peak.
The pair climbed their way into the history books on June 3, 1950 when they made the first successful ascent Annapurna, the tenth highest peak in the world at 8,091 metres (26,545 ft). Annapurna is now considered to be amongst the most challenging of the fourteen 8,000m peaks and wasn’t climbed again until 1970. Even more remarkable was that they made the ascent without the use of supplemental oxygen.
The summit team, along with two companions, Lionel Terray and Gaston Rébuffat, spent a night camped out in a crevasse on the descent with only one sleeping bag between them. As a result, they suffered severe frostbite. Herzog himself had lost his gloves on the way to the summit and ended up having all of his toes and several fingers amputated in the field.
Herzog book about the adventure, Annapurna The First Conquest of an 8000-Metre Peak, has been translated into 40 languages and has sold over 12 million copes across the globe. Even if you’re not a mountaineer it’s an inspiring read.