Monthly Archive for: ‘November, 2015’

I'm #thankful for a great many things - incredible family near and far, great kids, a wonderful world to explore and learn from, and the list goes on. But, more than anything, my wife who brings light, laughter, and love to everything she does...and the occasional jump, too.

I’m #thankful for a great many things…

I’m #thankful for a great many things – incredible family near and far, great kids, a wonderful world to explore and learn from, and the list goes on. But, more than anything, my wife who brings light, laughter, and love to everything she does…and the occasional jump, too. #lucky #liveyouradventure @wendebvalentine

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I was confused on multiple fronts. First,…

I was confused on multiple fronts. First, she looked like a #Navajo woman I had seen in the desert of New Mexico not long before; the resemblance – not simply in look, but also affect and ornamentation – was uncanny. To add to my confusion, I was pretty sure she said she was from Kham, in the foothills of the #Hengduan Mountains. That was at least 1,300 miles from our current location at the foot of Mount #Kailash, a huge distance made more remarkable by the fact that she was a #drokpa, or #Tibetan #nomad, and had walked the entire way to make her sacred #kora, or #circumambulation, of the mountain. The journey took her a month to complete, walking every step of the way. She said she came not only because the kora is auspicious and important to make in one’s life, but also because she heard the mountains are changing. Indeed, they are: the mountains around Kailash are seeing rapid glacial recession, threatening the major rivers (#Indus, #Brahmaputra, #Karnali, #Sutlej) that flow from there, but also the health of the sprawling grasslands which are the hallmark of the #Tibetan Plateau, and the cornerstone of the drokpa way of life. How can it be that this woman – perhaps one of the smallest contributors to global warming – will be one of the hardest hit? Let’s ensure she and other #mountain people have voices at #COP21 in #Paris. Sign the petition in my profile, and help tell the world that #MountainsMatter! #UNFCCC @unitednations #cop21paris #liveyouradventure #climatechangeisreal #facesofclimatechange #mountainfacesofclimatechange @climatereality @welovemountains #mountainpartnership #portraitmood #china

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#Bristlecone in the mist. I love the sublime beauty of #winter: stark and harsh, yet intense beauty for those who seek it.

#Bristlecone in the mist. I love the…

#Bristlecone in the mist. I love the sublime beauty of #winter: stark and harsh, yet intense beauty for those who seek it. #liveyouradventure

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The 8th century #Hindu saint, #Shankara (#Samkara),…

The 8th century #Hindu saint, #Shankara (#Samkara), often used the analogy of the ocean to explain the #monist theory of #Advaita #Vedanta to his disciples: one looks at the ocean and sees waves, foam, spray, etc. But, in reality, it is all just the ocean. #Duality is the illusion; all is indeed one. A #mountain reflection – like this one of #Nuptse – could also be used: we see the mountain and the reflection, and perceive them as separate; but, again, the duality is illusory. By Vedantic thinking, it is this illusion of duality that keeps us from truth, from #enlightenment, and locked in the cycle of #samsara, death and rebirth. Could we apply similar thinking to humanity? We look at the vast ocean of humans, and see lots of other: different faces, different colors, different beliefs and faiths and perspectives. That concept of other is then often used to de-humanize, which in turn makes it easy to vilify, to view the other as inhuman…and our compassion dwindles, our care evaporates. But, again, duality is perhaps the illusion. Are we not all one, with a fundamental commonality of needs and desires? Is it the perception of duality which erodes our compassion and ultimately prevents us from finding peace? #fridayphilosophy

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As I ran through the mountains this…

As I ran through the mountains this morning, trying to cast off the worry and sorrow over #Paris (and the countless other daily sorrows: #Beirut, #Baghdad, #Burundi, #Syria, #Gaza, #Nepal, #Umpqua, and more), the words of #Gandhi came to mind: “An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.” How true. Perhaps it’s human nature to seek revenge, to punch back, shoot back, strike back with vitriol and vehemence, to right a wrong with force and avenge a misdeed. But, the revenge only creates another wrong to be righted, another eye lost, and the circle continues. As a scholar (and lover) of all religion, but a follower of none, I often seek the words of the great thinkers of faith…their words and thoughts and deeds sprung from difficult times, times of sorrow and war and hatred and vengeance. And rarely, if ever, did they speak of striking back, of righting wrong through wrong (although their followers – of all faiths – are skilled at distorting words and meanings to serve violent ends). So, some words of hope from centuries past: God is not merciful to him who is not so to mankind. – #Muhammad. Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. – #Psalm 34:14. A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. – #Jesus. Lead me from hate to love, from war to peace. Let peace fill our heart, our world, our universe. Peace, peace, peace. – #Upanishads. Have compassion for all beings, rich and poor alike; each has their own suffering. – #Buddha. Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu. #prayforparis #prayforpeace #prayforpeople #weareallconnected #weareallone #prayfortheworld #prayforourworld

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#Ecuador produces only 0.1% of the world's #greenhouse gasses, but like many similar nations around the world, it is experiencing some of the fastest and most dramatic climate change. This young #Kichwa girl (known as #Quechua in Peru, #Inga in Colombia) lives in the shadow of the country's most famous summit, #Cotopaxi. At 5,897 m (19,347 ft), Cotopaxi is the second-highest peak in Ecaudor, one of the tallest volcanoes in the world, and hosts some of the globe's last equatorial glaciers. These glaciers supply most of the water for #Quito, the nation's capital and home to 2.7 million people. And, for the local Kichwa, the glacial outflows from Cotopaxi are the lifeblood of existence. But, this girl, the Kichwa, Quechua, Inga, and so many mountain people and places around the globe don't have a voice at the upcoming #COP21 #UNFCCC discussions in #Paris. Let's help give them one. Sign and share the petition in my profile, and help get the #mountainfacesofclimatechange in the discussions next month.

#Ecaudor produces only 0.1% of the world’s…

#Ecaudor produces only 0.1% of the world’s #greenhouse gasses, but like many similar nations around the world, it is experiencing some of the fastest and most dramatic climate change. This young #Kichwa girl (known as #Quechua in Peru, #Inga in Colombia) lives in the shadow of the country’s most famous summit, #Cotopaxi. At 5,897 m (19,347 ft), Cotopaxi is the second highest peak in Ecaudor, one of the tallest volcanoes in the world, and hosts some of the globe’s last equatorial glaciers. These glaciers supply most of the water for #Quito, the nation’s capital and home to 2.7 million people. And, for the local Kichwa, the glacial outflows from Cotopaxi are the lifeblood of existence. But, this girl, the Kichwa, Quechua, Inga, and so many mountain people and places around the globe don’t have a voice at the upcoming #COP21 #UNFCCC discussions in #Paris. Let’s help give them one. Sign and share the petition in my profile, and help get the #mountainfacesofclimatechange in the discussions next month. #mountainpartnership @welovemountains @everydayclimatechange #liveyouradventure @climatereality #facesofclimatechange #cop21paris @smanuelli

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November 12, 2015 (4:47 pm)

November 12, 2015 (4:47 pm) Simikot, Humla, Nepal View this photo in Jake Norton & MountainWorld’s Instagram ⇒

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Wishing a big Happy Birthday today to…

Wishing a big Happy Birthday today to my friend and hero, Dr. Tom #Hornbein. Tom is most well known for his groundbreaking, audacious ascent of the West Ridge of #Everest on May 22nd, 1963, with Willi #Unsoeld. Theirs was a climb for the record books: it was the first time anyone went to the highest Himalaya and deliberately targeted the hardest route they could find rather than the easiest way to the top. The difficulty of their route was shown on their summit day; Tom and Willi quickly reached a point from where they could not turn back, and had to go for the summit and descend a route they had never seen. Theirs was the first ascent of the West Ridge, the first traverse of Mount Everest, and it ushered in a whole new era in Himalayan mountaineering. Amazingly, however, that is but a small part of all that Tom has packed into his 85 years. He has raised an amazing family, was head of anesthesiology at University of Washington for 40 years, and has inspired generations of climbers and adventurers worldwide. So, here’s to Tom, and many more birthdays to come! | This photo was taken during one of our interviews with Tom during the creation of our award-winning film on the 1963 American Mount Everest Expedition, #highandhallowed. #liveyouradventure #tomhornbein #williunsoeld #AMEE #westridge @eddiebauer @davidcmorton @jimaikman

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I’ve always been a huge fan of…

I’ve always been a huge fan of #history, especially the history of great exploration. I’ve been fortunate to follow in the footsteps – and help tell the stories – of #Everest pioneers #Mallory and #Irvine, #Hornbein and #Unsoeld, and others. Of those many incredible early expeditions, the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1914-1917 – led by Sir Ernest #Shackleton – was one I was dying to interact with firsthand. In 2004, I got my chance when #DaveHahn invited me to guide with him (and Dierdre Galbraith) a crossing of South Georgia, following the path pioneered by Shackleton, #Worsley, and #Crean in 1916. Unlike them, we had near-perfect weather for the job, and we knew where to go, we had GPS and maps and food and supplies and crampons. Oh, and we hadn’t spent the previous two years icebound in #Antarctica and sailing a dinghy (the James Caird) across 800 miles of treacherous ocean. Despite our advantages, the crossing was still far from simple: the rugged terrain, fierce #katabatic winds, long distances, and vast remoteness of the area all taking their toll. But, we made it, and I gained yet more appreciation and respect for Shackleton, his teammates, and all the early explorers of the world; while far from perfect, they embodied a pride and ethic and profound toughness that is an increasing rarity today. We can all learn from the pages of history. | In this photo, a line of #lenticular #cloud points the way forward from the #Trident past #Antarctic Bay, across the #Crean and #Fortuna Glaciers, and on toward #Stromness, far out of view. #liveyouradventure #southgeorgia #southgeorgiaisland #greatsouthernocean #explore #exploration #ernestshackleton #sirernestshackleton

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Wishing a big Happy Birthday to my…

Wishing a big Happy Birthday to my friend, @eddiebauer teammate, and colleague #DaveHahn today. I’ve quite literally spent years in the high mountains with Dave. Dave was my guide on my second climb of #Rainier in 1988; we became colleagues at @rmiexpeditions in 1993, guiding on Rainier and also #McKinley / #Denali together. We’ve been on 6 #Everest expeditons together (1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2009, 2012) and the one when we weren’t, we ended up meeting on the summit, me from the Northeast Ridge and Dave from the Southeast. Dave was kind enough to let me assist him in 2004 retracing the #Shackleton route across South Georgia. This photo was taken in 2004 at about 24,500 feet on the North Ridge of Everest during our third search for answers to the mystery of #Mallory and #Irvine (#Cholatse is prominent in the background, and #Gyachung Kang and #Cho #Oyu can be seen in the distance). I can’t say enough good about Dave: he’s the consummate guide, tough, diligent, and dedicated, and there’s few in the world I’d tie into a rope with as quickly. Happy Birthday, Mr. Hahn! #liveyouradventure #malloryandirvine #chooyu #gyachungkang #mounteverest #everydayasia #everydaynepal #everydaytibet

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