|On 30/05/2013 radson wrote:
>Yeah often up and down ladders on Everest.
Bloody good (and bloody obvious) point there, Radson and Technog... ; ) After following the interwebz-hype on this proposition, I've been wondering what makes the ethical difference between a bunch of ladders down in the Khumbu Icefall, and one higher up?? Tons of pre-fixed ropes, being dragged on with jumars; people being short-roped year after year; rubbish and corpses galore; Sherpa's babysitting eminently unqualified 'clients', cooking their food, and setting up their tents; supplementary oxygen; altitude prophylactics... Some adventure...!
Not to mention the long-standing ladder on the most "difficult" technical section on the North side, yet that didn't stop House and Houlding exploring the hypothesis that it was climbable. If Hilary had used a ladder on the step, like the Chinese did on the first ascent of the North side, then nobody at all would be questioning it. What a ridunculous amount of hype and rhetoric this mountain creates. Enough B.S. to get rid of Ueli for good, who I for one was far more interested in seeing his style and result - than the latest wheezing Japanese pensioner, or pimply teenager achieving another notch in the books.
I reckon there's a funny double standard going on, by looking it as *removing the adventure* etc etc... It's a natural progression, the slow and methodical conquering of the unknown, and it started with the first ascent, and every other bit of refining and removing of adventure that technical equipment evolution, and familiarity of a previously unknown environment brings. Nobody bitches about flying to the South Pole, because you've removed the adventure of walking there with a compass. Did shoes remove the adventure of climbing barefoot? Did the first roped climber lose the thrill of free-solo? etc etc...
The genuinely qualified will always seek out true adventure, pioneer previously unknown risks, and discover new frontiers, and thus unwittingly begin the process of dilution again for everyone else who follows in their path. At the end of the day, it's all subjective, adventure is in the eye of the beholder. Or something like that... : ]