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Description

Climbing Mount Everest

Fine map of the area around Mount Everest, published by the Royal Geographical Society Mount Everest Committee and the Alpine Club.

Drawn from the first mapping of Mount Everest by Major Oliver Wheeler, who participated in the British Expedition in 1921 the map illustrates the topographical features of the area around Mount Everest, along with the route from the base camp at the top of the map to the summit (red dashed lines), including the 6 camps, marked with roman numerals.  Neighboring glaciers are also shown, along with elevations in feet and meters. The map also notes the locations where cameras were set up for photography on the route to the summit.

In 1921, the British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition made a careful study area around Mount Everest, searching for prospective routes to the summit.  Because Nepal was still closed to foreigners, a route from Tibet in the north was required.  The expedition found a feasible route from the east up the Kharta Glacier and then crossing the Lhakpa La pass north east of Everest, followed by a descent to the East Rongbuk Glacier before climbing again to Everest's North Col, where the 1921 expedition was forced to conclude its trek.  In 1922, a second expedition was able to climb beyond the North Col, but was not able to reach the summit.  In 1924, an unsuccessful second attempt was made to reach the summit, which ended with three unsuccessful attempts to reach the summit, the last of which ended with the the disappearance of George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, the two climbers.

Following the 1924 attempt, the British were banned from further attempts until 1933, when a fourth expedition was made, which resulted in the establishment of new camps.  Subsequent attempts would be made in 1935, 1936, 1938, 1951 and 1952 (Swiss), before Mount Everest was finally submitted in 1953 by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, and again in 1956 by Ernst Schmied, Jurg Marmet, Dolf Reist, and Hansruedi von Gunten.

This the second state of the map, which was first published in 1925.  The map was published from information drawn from the 1921 and 1924 expeditions to climb the mountain.  This new edition is the first to includes the locations of 4 camps from the 1933 expedition and the route to the summit of Mount Everest.

Rarity

The map is apparently rare.  OCLC locates 1 copy (Stanford), as well as 2 examples of the 1925 edition (Oxford University and Zentralbibliothek Zurich).