May 29, 2015
Today marks the 62nd anniversary of the first successful ascent of
Here are some things you may not have known about the
First: The 1953 British expedition was under tremendous pressure to
succeed. The French and Swiss had received approval to try to climb
Everest in 1954 and 1955, respectively. The next opportunity for
the British would have been 1956 at the earliest.
Second: Edmund Hillary did not command the expedition. In fact, he
wasn’t even on the expedition leader’s first choice of teams to
attempt the summit. Tom Bourdillon and Charles Evans reached the
south summit, about 300 feet short of the ultimate summit on May
Third: Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the summit at 11:30 a.m.
and buried some candy and a cross in the snow. The news was relayed
by coded telegraph, which reached London on June 2, the morning of
Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation.
Our question: What is the second-tallest mountain in the
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