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NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 1997 August Greg Child, Kitty Calhoun, Jay Smith Climbing Thalay Sagar Indian Himalaya (Multiple copies available)
By Child, Greg, Kitty Calhoun, Jay Smith
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A VERY NICE COPY OF THIS CLASSIC MAGAZINE:
 
Articles in this magazine are as follows
 

Greg Child, Kitty Calhoun, Jay Smith: The Frozen Face of Thalay Sagar.

 
No one has reached the summit of this 22,650-foot Himalayan peak by its north face. Two American climbers find out why.
 
The real climbing in the Himalaya is not on the 8000 meter peaks, it is on lower, harder and less travelled peaks like Thalay Sagar in the Indian Himalaya.

Thalay Sagar is a mountain in the Gangotri Group of peaks in the western Garhwal Himalaya, on the main ridge that lies south of the Gangotri Glacier. It lies in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand, 10 kilometres (6 mi) southwest of the Hindu holy site of Gaumukh (the source of the Bhagirathi River). It is the second highest peak on the south side of the Gangotri Glacier (after Kedarnath), but it is more notable for being a dramatic rock peak, steep on all sides, and a famed prize for mountaineers. It is adjacent to the Jogen group of peaks, and has the lake Kedartal at its base.

The obvious difficulty presented by Thalay Sagar's consistently steep profile prevented any attempts at climbing the peak until the late 1970s, when hard technical rock climbing began to be practiced at high altitude. Unusually for such a hard peak, the first attempt was actually successful. It was first climbed on June 24, 1979 via the northwest couloir and ridge, by an Anglo-American team comprising Roy Kligfield, John Thackray, and Pete Thexton.

Since the first ascent, many other routes have been climbed on the peak, some of which have been testpieces of modern mountaineering. There have been at least 15 ascents by at least 9 different routes. The north face of the peak, in particular, has been climbed by 5 different routes, some more direct than others. The key difficulty in the direct routes is a notorious band of shale near the summit, which presents rotten and dangerous rock. The first route to climb directly through the shale band, instead of finishing on one of the ridges, was the Australian Route done by Andrew Lindblade and Athol Whimp; it involves 1,400 m (4,600 ft) of climbing and is graded VII 5.9 WI5. Their climb was awarded the Piolet d'Or in 1998.
 
Other articles:
 
  • Islands at the Edge. Shifting slivers of sand, the barrier islands that protect the Atlantic and Gulf coasts lure beach lovers into a losing battle with nature.
  • A New Light in the Sea. Red Sea corals explode with fluorescent colors under the glow of ultraviolet light.
  • Roman Legacy. Fifteen centuries after the fall of Rome the empire’s influence still pervades our culture in law, language, architecture, and government.
  • A Special Place: Oregon’s Outback. In the state’s rugged southeast corner the wind is a constant companion and water is as rare as a neighbor.
  • Malaysia: Rising Star. After 40 years of independence this Southeast Asian nation has achieved peace and plenty, at a cost.
  • Malaysia’s Secret Realm. Mists wreathe Sabah on the northern tip of Borneo, where virgin rain forest shelters fragile treasures.

 


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