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Everything You Need to Know About Ulsan

Much Ado about Climbing

The Korean news outlets are all buzzing with the news that Korean Oh Eun-Sun is the first woman to climb all 14 of the world’s highest peaks.  KBS and Yonhap boldly claim she’s done it and bother not at all to mention any controversy.  But the BBC claims she hasn’t and is calling BS on her efforts in climbing 8,586m peak Kangchenjunga.

The only record keeper of the climbing of Nepal’s mountains, Elizabeth Hawley, and 86 year old grannie who lives in Kathmandu has classified the attempt as “disputed.”  Here’s five reasons why she might go ahead and classify as “unrecognized:”

  1. The summit photos don’t show diddly – too snowy and blurry to prove a thing
  2. The Sherpas who carried her stuff disagree with each other about whether or not she finished.
  3. The photo shows a rope going up that the Spaniards claim was theirs and was far below the summit.
  4. The Korean flag was found planted far below the summit
  5. The timing of her claim of final ascent during a white-out (and lack of photos from below) is suspect and would have “been, at the least, a brisk pace for anyone climbing without bottled oxygen.”

Meanwhile, the most telling bit of information in the BBC article is the fact there really are no official records of who climbs what where and how fast. Why is that, one might wonder?

Records kept by governments are not regarded as authoritative.

I’ve been saying that about the US government for years – ever since GW Bush became president.