International Mountaineering Day is celebrated annually on 8 August. It was on this day in 1786 that two Swiss, Michel-Gabriel Packard and Jacques Balma, conquered the highest peak of the Alps - Mont Blanc. A quarter of a century before this event, the famous Swiss scientist and mountaineer Horace Benedict Saussure tried to conquer Mont Blanc. After unsuccessful attempts, Saussure announced that he was ready to pay a substantial reward to whoever reached the summit of Mont Blanc.
The conquerors of the highest peak in the world, Everest, always use the services of the Sherpas. Representatives of this ethnic group live in Eastern Nepal. Doctors have found that Sherpas have faster blood circulation than the average inhabitant of the Earth. Thanks to this, Sherpas are not susceptible to altitude sickness and are ideal guides in the highlands.
There are fourteen mountain peaks in the world, the height of which exceeds 8, 000 meters. Ten of them are located in the Himalayas. Conquering all eight-thousanders of the planet is the dream of any climber. But, there are only 41 such people in the world, moreover, including 4 women.
In Russia, the Russian Mining Society was established on December 24, 1900. The initiator was the well-known businessman Alexander Karlovich von Meck, who at that time held the post of director of the Moscow-Kazan railway. Note - the name of the society does not contain the word "mountaineering". And this is no coincidence. Von Meck himself stated that there are no Alps in Russia, therefore, one cannot be called an "Alpine" society.
The first eight-thousander that man was able to conquer is Mount Annapurna, whose height is 8091 meters. A French expedition conquered this peak on June 3, 1950. But, this does not mean at all that climbing Annapurna is much easier than climbing other eight-thousanders. It is Annapurna who is the culprit of numerous victims. According to statistics, every third climber dies on the way to the highest point of Annapurna. And this despite the fact that only the most experienced climbers decide on the assault.
On May 25, 2008, Nepalese Min Bahadur climbed Mount Everest at the age of 76 years and 340 days. It would seem a record for centuries. But Bahadur soon had a worthy rival - the Japanese climber Yuichiro Miura. He conquered Everest on May 23, 2013 at the age of 80. Interestingly, Yuichiro had fallen downhill skiing a few years earlier, fracturing his pelvis and hip. To the surprise of the doctors, six months later the veteran climber resumed training.
Interestingly, the Nepalese climber Min Bahadur did not give up and decided to regain the title of the oldest conqueror of Everest again. He planned the ascent for May 2017 at the age of 85. But, it all ended tragically - during the expedition, Bahadur died of heart failure.
In the Soviet Union, a climber who conquered the most inaccessible peaks of the country received a special token - "Conqueror of the highest mountains of the USSR." In the language of the climbers themselves, such masters were called "Snow Leopard". Legendary Boris Korshunov fulfilled this standard 9 times.