The Mount Everest Reconnaissance Expedition 1951
- Eric Shipton
- 29 Nov 2013
In 1953, Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the summit of Mount Everest. They climbed from the south, from Nepal, via the Khumbu Glacier – a route first pioneered in 1951 by a reconnaissance expedition led by Eric Shipton.
Everest 1951 is the account of this expedition. It was the first to approach the mountain from the south side, it pioneered a route through the Khumbu icefall and it was the expedition on which Hillary set foot on Everest for the first time. Everest 1951 is a short but vitally important read for anybody with any interest in mountaineering or in Everest.
The 1951 Everest Expedition marked the public highpoint of Shipton’s mountaineering fame. Key information was discovered and the foundations laid for future success. Despite this, Shipton’s critics felt he had a ‘lack of trust’ and thus failed to match the urgent mood of the period. Despite having been on more Everest expeditions than any man alive, he was ‘eased’ out of the crucial leadership role in 1953 and so missed the huge public acclaim given to Hillary, Tenzing Norgay and John Hunt after their historic success.
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Eric Earle Shipton (1907-1977) was one of the great mountain explorers of the 20th century. He climbed extensively in the Alps in the 1920s, put up new routes on Mt Kenya in 1921 and, in 1931, made the first ascent of Kamet with Frank Smythe – the highest peak climbed at that time. Shipton was involved with most of the Everest expeditions in the 1930s, reaching a highpoint of 28,000 feet in 1933. He went on to lead the 1951 expedition, which was the first to approach Everest from the north (Nepalese) side, which pioneered the route through the Khunbu icefall and on which Edmund Hillary first set foot on the mountain.
- Title: Everest 1951
- Sub-title: The Mount Everest Reconnaissance Expedition 1951
- Author: Eric Shipton
- Imprint: Vertebrate Digital
- ISBN: 978-1-906148-83-6
- Publication date: 29 November 2013
- Price: £4.99