EXPEDITION NEWS is a monthly review of significant expeditions, research projects and newsworthy adventures. It is distributed online and by mail to media representatives, corporate sponsors, educators, research librarians, explorers, environmentalists, and outdoor enthusiasts. This forum on exploration covers projects that stimulate, motivate and educate.
Here are highlights from our June issue. To receive the complete version each month - by mail or e-mail - see subscription information below.
ARCHAEOLOGISTS STUDY NORMANDY WRECKS
What Really Happened Off-Shore on "The Longest Day"?
On a cliff overlooking Omaha Beach in Normandy, France, lie the remains of
more than 9,000 Americans killed when the Allies invaded France on D-Day,
June 6, 1944. In a corner of this cemetery, a semicircular wall lists the
names of 1,557 soldiers whose remains were never found and who are listed as
Missing In Action.
While family members may never learn the fates of their missing relatives, these soldiers likely died in the naval action called Operation Neptune that ferried troops and equipment across the English Channel to Normandy's landing beaches - Gold, Juno, Omaha, Sword, and Utah.
Fifty-seven years after the invasion, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA) at Texas A & M University, and the Discovery Channel, are examining those hallowed beaches using state-of-the-art remote sensing detection and imaging equipment to find out what happened to soldiers who lost their lives before reaching shore.
FAMOUS QUOTE INSPIRES AFRICAN EXPEDITION
It's arguably one of the expedition world's most famous quotes - ranking right up there with "Because it is there," and "One small step for man." The 2001 Stanley Livingstone Expedition will retrace on foot the route taken by Henry M. Stanley (1841-1904) during his famous 1871 search for "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" Starting this month, the expedition team will hike 1,000 miles across the breadth of Tanzania from the Indian Ocean to the shores of Lake Tanganyika. A film crew will document the team's adventure along the same footpaths Stanley trod 130 years earlier traveling from one village to the next.
This month Expedition News takes its annual look at the spring climbing season on Everest and finds more attention than usual on this fifth anniversary of the 1996 tragedy. It was on May 10, 1996, that eight climbers from three expeditions were killed during descents not far below the summit when blizzards struck the Himalayan peak. Adding to the attention last month was unfortunate news about two of the mountain's most revered climbers.
At press time, 77 climbers and their Sherpa guides have reached the peak on the Nepalese side of the mountain. Four climbers have died, including a well-known Sherpa.
There was a calm, yet powerful presence about Babu Chhiri Sherpa when he walked the aisles of the Outdoor Retailer trade show last year. There on behalf of his sponsors, he was proud to hand over a business card that listed his impressive climbing feats. Chhiri, 35, who set a record last year by climbing Everest in 16 hours 56 minutes, died Apr. 29 after falling into a crevasse on the mountain while on his 11th Everest ascent.
Erik Weihenmayer, 32, of Golden, Colo., became the first-ever blind climber to reach the summit of Everest. Weihenmayer reached the peak with Eric Alexander, 31, of Vail, Colo., Luis Benitez, 28, of Boulder, Colo., and Jeff Evans, 31, of Denver. Minutes before they summitted, Chris Morris, 33, from Wasilla, Alaska, with Bradford Bull, 33, of Denver, and his father, Sherman Bull, M.D., 64, of New Canaan, Conn., also reached the 29,035-foot peak with eight Nepalese Sherpa guides. The climbers were part of the National Federation of the Blind Allegra 2001 Everest Expedition.Weihenmayer, 32, lost his sight at age 13 due to retinoschesis, a degenerative disease that detaches and splits retinas.
Surgeon Sherman Bull, M.D., at 64, has become the oldest person ever to stand atop Everest. He surpasses two other "youngsters," Georgian climber Lev Sarkisov, who reached the summit May 12, 1999, at 61, and Toshio Yamamoto who summitted last year at 63.
On May 22, a 15-year-old Sherpa boy became the youngest climber to reach the
summit. Eighth-grade student Temba Tsheri - who lost five fingers from
frostbite during an attempt to climb Everest last year - succeeded in
reaching the top. Tsheri broke the record set by another Nepalese climber,
Tamang, in 1973 when he climbed Mount Everest at the age of 17.
According to Everest historian Elizabeth Hawley, a total of 986 people have climbed the 8850m (29,035 ft.) high mountain by press time, and 168 have died while scaling the peak.
Sir Edmund Hillary was struck with altitude sickness while doing charity work in the Himalayan mountains. Hillary, 81, who flew back to New Zealand to recuperate, said that recurring bouts of altitude sickness won't stop him from working in the Nepalese mountains he loves.
Gore Unveils 2001 Shipton/Tilman Awards - One of the major award programs outlined in the May issue of EN has just announced its 2001 grant recipients. For the eleventh year, the Shipton/Tilman Grant awards a total of $30,000 to expeditions that embody the philosophies of Eric Shipton and Bill Tilman, world-class explorers who were big advocates of small expeditions. The winners are included in the June issue of Expedition News.
The Boston Museum of Science ad campaign for the film, "Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure," calls the 1914 ill-fated expedition, "The Greatest Survival Story of All Time." But it's the headline that got our attention. It reads: "His Expedition Failed. He Abandoned His Ship. He Left His Crew Stranded. He is One of the Greatest Leaders That Ever Lived." The film is presented by Morgan Stanley Dean Witter and is a production of White Mountain Films and NOVA/WGBH Boston.
Kanchenjunga, Ama Dablam, plus trekking peaks. Kilimanjaro, Mt. Kenya Rock Climb. Low Prices. All Abilities.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
is published by Blumenfeld and Associates, Inc., 28 Center Street, Darien, CT 06820 USA. Tel. 203 855 9400, fax 203 855 9433, firstname.lastname@example.org. Editor/publisher: Jeff Blumenfeld. ©2001 Blumenfeld and Associates, Inc. All rights reserved. ISSN: 1526-8977. Subscriptions: US$36/yr.; international postal rate US$46/yr. Highlights from EXPEDITION NEWS can be found at www.expeditionnews.com.