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Epic Mountain Climb Proves “Exploration Is Not Dead” | Exposure

this was old school real turn of the century adventure it was everything that exploration and adventure is and can be and and those elements that we’ve lost along the way we wanted an anti Everest and we really got an anti Everest Myanmar the northern tip of Myanmar Burma there was sort of a geographic question mark up there what is the highest point in Southeast Asia and there were three options kakapo Razi gamlang Razi and then an unnamed peak our initial goal was to try to go to measure these points and figure out what in fact was the highest I think this expedition surprised all of us it was much more complex right from the beginning than we had anticipated immediately we had to cut half of our gear and after the first day of walking which was a 16 mile day with 5,000 feet of vertical gain we had to cut our gear again because we realized there was no way that we were gonna get enough Porter’s to carry even the gear that we had still I thought getting to Basecamp that I would be very comfortable because this is something that I’m comfortable with I’ve been in this environment before you know now it’s kind of like up when we go up we rested one day in base camp before starting to climb and again there’s no trail we don’t know what we’re going and it was up and down and sharp and scary and horrifying and 6,000 feet of vertical gain from base camp it started to occur to us that maybe we didn’t have everything that we needed that we had been a little bit hasty with our gear cuts and I started to wonder at that point if we had enough clothing to withstand the wind that we were going to potentially encounter up higher and to be fair we didn’t as we got up to camp three we realized that the terrain ahead of us was just a little bit too complex and too dangerous for five of us to be climbing together we needed to cut the team now it wasn’t to say that that Hillary and Emily couldn’t have climbed it it was just to expedite and try to get to the summit and try to measure this mountain we had to look at who had the most experience on that kind of terrain and we you know left as as mark or Nam myself the ridge that we were trying to climb it was you know sort of akin to the edge of a very poorly made saw you’re gonna have to preserve some energy because you have to essentially wreak Lyme the whole Ridge in Reverse and I got to a point where I felt very concerned that we were putting too much up and down too much sort of complex convoluted terrain in between us and safety we don’t have sleeping bags at this point we don’t have a tent we have a stove but not enough fuel and I’m scared about that mark started leading the next pitch so he goes down and around this corner and that was these huge kind of rock teeth sticking up and and then he came back you know 15 20 minutes later and said you know this is it it’s over it’s too complex with what we have to keep going the summit you could see it you could I mean it was right there and it was hard it was heartbreaking it’s just heartbreaking I’m proud that we put in as much effort as we did and I’m proud of the decision that we made to turn around you’re pushing that envelope you’re pushing that edge and and failures I mean I think failure is just a piece of all of this the the major take away from an expedition like this is that exploration is not dead that’s really just gonna push us to discover more and more and more about our planet and hopefully inspire us to care about our planet as a human family I mean that’s putting exploration in sort of a context of something that is important and relevant and needs to continue you
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