POWELL, Wyo. - Mark Jenkins, an international alpinist and field staff writer for National Geographic magazine, will discuss his ascent of Mount Everest in a 4 p.m. presentation Friday, March 8, in Room 70 of the Fagerberg Building at Northwest College.
The program is titled “Climbing Everest: the Myths, the Macabre and the Madness.”
Jenkins spent two months in the spring of 2012 climbing Everest to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first American ascent of Everest. He and his mountaineering partners from The North Face summited Everest despite accidents, illness, bitter cold and ferocious winds. Tragically, 10 people died on Everest during that same season.
The most iconic mountain on earth, Everest has been the scene of triumph and tragedy for almost a century. From the first attempt on the mountain in 1922, when George Mallory and Sandy Irvine died, to the first ascent by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay in 1953, the world’s highest peak has represented chance and challenge, controversy and contradiction.
Jenkins’ climb was in recognition of the first American ascent of Everest made by Jim Whittaker and Sherpa Nawang Gombu in 1963.
Three weeks later in 1963, four more Americans summited: Tom Hornbein, Willi Unsoeld, Lute Jerstad and National Geographic photographer Barry Bishop. They were forced to bivouac at high altitude and between them lost 19 toes and 2 fingers to frostbite.
A critically acclaimed author, Jenkins covers the globe writing about adventure and geopolitical issues, from landmines in Cambodia to mountain gorillas in the Congo, mountaineering in Pakistan to canyoneering in Australia.
He is the author of four award-winning books and has appeared on Anderson Cooper 360, Good Morning America, CNN, PBS and countless radio programs.
Jenkins appearance in Powell is sponsored by the University of Wyoming Academic Affairs and the Northwest College International Studies Program as part of the World to Wyoming Lecture Series.
Admission is free.