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By Dane
Jan 29, 2013
Cham '11
coldthistle.blogspot.com/2013/...

Add to that list Diamox for clients, guides and the idoits on Rainier.

Did it myself on occasion bitd but agreed with Twight on this and would take the label of cheater even further now obviously.

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By Ben Brotelho
From Albany, NY
Jan 29, 2013
Epic free solo with a pack on
Interesting read. It is funny to note that people that are in the spotlight as elite athletes (Lance, for instance), catch a ton of flack for doing something that is no more cheating than using supplemental oxygen is, yet the hordes of people summitting Everest every year basically being dragged by guides receive praise. They are equal forms of cheating if you ask me.

It all comes back to the concept of the "Murder of the Impossible," as well. Mankind as a whole will never take "no" for an answer. That lawyer or doctor from NYC is not going to let the fact that he is fat and out of shape get in the way of 'conquering' the highest peak.

I think it is sad because people who do cheat are getting involved with the sport for such reprehensible reasons, like the attention of their friends or praise from others. I have always felt that there is no "right" reason to climb, and that a lot of people (myself included) enjoy showing off pictures of climbing trips to friends, but I think people who will use anything possible to get to the top and view the summit as the ultimate goal in climbing, are robbing themselves of the beauty of the process.

Not only that, but their actions are self-perpetuating because everyone now sees that any old bag of bones with a big wallet can get to the top of Everest. That is not climbing. That is babysitting at altitude.

Note: highest altitude I've ever been at was the summit of Longs Peak (14,259 ft.), so I am really just talking out of my ass.

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By Ben Brotelho
From Albany, NY
Jan 29, 2013
Epic free solo with a pack on
BTW this might get some more attention if it were placed in a different forum like general climbing or something

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By Avi Katz
Jan 29, 2013
I'm a huge fan of Mark's writing style and brutal honesty. Pick up his book "Kiss or Kill" for more.

While I agree that being coddled up to the top as a client using sherpas, guides, fixed lines, and many many bottles of O2 is far from a solo, oxygen-less ascent, there is a major difference between this and other professional sports-

Climbing Everest is not a competition.

Sure it is dangerous, difficult, and could kill you in far more ways that riding a bicycle around France, but the fact of the matter stands that it is not an organized competition.
The second there was some kind of summit race organized, there would be an upsurge in drug use. Climbers might be caught "pulling a Lance" and doping their blood for extra O2, or maybe using roids in training.

All we need is more publicity and a prize.

Who is to say this doesn't happen at competitive climbing comps already? While I'm personally all for anarchy and Darwinism, I would be interested to see what turns up in the blood of elite climbers. Not to say roids... but maybe some other fun stuff.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Jan 29, 2013
El Chorro
The state of the Everest region from an environmental standpoint alone should be enough to ban bottled oxygen in the Himalaya. How many empty bottles are up there? Thousands? Tens of thousands? It's a disgrace.

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By The Stoned Master
Administrator
From Pennsylvania
Jan 29, 2013
Day Lily.
+1 what ryan says. Human glutony.

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By JCM
From Seattle, WA
Jan 29, 2013
Ryan Williams wrote:
The state of the Everest region from an environmental standpoint alone should be enough to ban bottled oxygen in the Himalaya.


An aesthetic issue, yes. A clutter issue, yes. But an environmental issue? Seems like a stretch...and an overuse that dilutes the meaning of the term "environmental issue. These countries have vastly greater environmental issues to worry about: air pollution, access to clean drinking water, proper waste management, etc.. Few people other than us self-righteous climbers care a thing about a few hundred empty metal canisters on a desolate mountainside.

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By Dane
Jan 29, 2013
Cham '11
"But an environmental issue? Seems like a stretch"

Not at all. Eliminate O2 from the mountain and the crowds instantly are gone. Enviromental impact drastically lessened.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Jan 29, 2013
El Chorro
Dane wrote:
"But an environmental issue? Seems like a stretch" Not at all. Eliminate O2 from the mountain and the crowds instantly are gone. Environmental impact drastically lessened.


This ^^^

The fact that this mountain range lies in developing countries that have problems with pollution in their cities doesn't change the fact that humans are ruining the Everest for personal gain. When a piece of the natural environment on this planet is being destroyed, I call it an environmental issue.

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By bearbreeder
Jan 29, 2013
never happen ... those nepalese need the money ...

the milking works both ways ;)

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By Tico
Jan 29, 2013
Screw those brown people and their third world problems. We're debating mighty conqueror dick swinging white man ethics here.

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By TWK
Jan 29, 2013
I'm not sure why this bothers so many people so deeply.
While Twight is both respected and accomplished, what authorizes him or any other individual to make rules or define "cheating"?
Maybe the term "cheating" applies mainly if you lie about the means and profit from it?
Why is only canned O2 cheating?
What about modern, enhanced, nutrient rich food and supplements? We put those in our bodies, too, and many leave the packaging and fecal waste of that behind.
What constitutes "cheating" can be very hard to define and may depend more on who's the most vocal about it. If Twight doesn't want to use O2, great, but I'm not sure he can make the rules for everybody else.

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Jan 29, 2013
Bocan
Ryan Williams wrote:
The state of the Everest region from an environmental standpoint alone should be enough to ban bottled oxygen in the Himalaya. How many empty bottles are up there? Thousands? Tens of thousands? It's a disgrace.


Totally agree...of course I'm a person that will never climb everest, but in general the state of the peak and the certain type of people that climb it make me not want to. I don't even find literature or film on the subject interesting anymore. Although an incredible mountain, humans of course have just turned it into a dump for their own egos.

It was pretty cool however the art that was recently made out of the junk from Everest.

Off topic of course...

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Jan 29, 2013
El Chorro
Tico wrote:
Screw those brown people and their third world problems. We're debating mighty conqueror dick swinging white man ethics here.


What are you talking about? The destruction of a mountain would be no more or less of a tragedy in the US or France. And I'm sure you could find plenty of Nepalese people who would rather us all stay away. Many of the environmental problems in the cities and areas around Everest are actually due to the swelling population during peak climbing and trekking seasons. There is no infrastructure to handle the waste that humans create in Kathmandu during peak seasons. Some villages experience rolling blackouts because of the influx of visitors that require 24 hr electricity.

I'm glad that some of the locals see a smidgen of the money that white people spend to get to the top of the world, but if you really think that the Everest guiding industry is a good thing for Nepal or China then you are sorely mistaken. They bring in a lot of money through permits, but that money is seen by a teeny tiny percent of the population. The rest is down to how much money people spend in the local economy, and sadly enough, that just isn't much in the grand scheme of things.

I could care less about whether bottled o2 is cheating or not. If I was going to do Everest I'd try it w/o o2, but that doesn't mean I know what I am talking about. All I am saying is that the region is being destroyed and it's a sad thing. Disallowing the use of o2 would certainly decrease the amount of people on the mountain, therefore alleviating the stress put on the environment.

In 1998 a team removed 1.2 TONS of waste from Everest, mostly from base camp. How much do you think has been left up there since then?


Trash
Trash

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By MojoMonkey
Jan 29, 2013
Ben Brotelho wrote:
It is funny to note that people that are in the spotlight as elite athletes (Lance, for instance), catch a ton of flack for doing something that is no more cheating than using supplemental oxygen is


You clearly don't understand all that Lance did - that is understandable though he has/had a huge PR machine.

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By TWK
Jan 29, 2013
The "rules" are arbitrary. The only real rule should be not to lie about your accomplishments.

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By Mark E Dixon
From Sprezzatura, Someday
Jan 29, 2013
At the BRC
IIRC, Twight's marketing angle has always been "I'm more extreme and purer than anybody else" and this just seems like more of the same to me, now attempting to capitalize on Armstrong's recent negative publicity.

Not sure why you all are so eager to declare the 'right way' to climb Everest. If oxygen is out, maybe plane flights should be too, and all of us need to sail to the greater ranges like Shipton. That would really cut down the numbers!

As for guided ascents being easy, I call bullshit.

Trash on any mountain (including litter on Boulder Canyon mini-crags) disgusts me. But Nepal has much bigger environmental issues.

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By Dane
Jan 29, 2013
Cham '11
the article was first published months ago...

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By CJC
Jan 29, 2013
except for the OP who cross-posted this to the taco and who knows where else

who gives a flying fuck what this guy thinks?

shut up and climb

the 80s called. they want their self-flagellating uber-sensitive drama queen back

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By coppolillo
Jan 29, 2013
Difference is, everyone who enters the Tour declares they will not use PED's. It's a prerequisite for entering the race.

There's no equivalent rule within alpinism (if we call what those folks do on Everest alpinism) to climb Mount Everest.

Apples to oranges.

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By Stone Nude
Jan 29, 2013
When dumb people have disposable income, hilarity ...
CJC wrote:
the 80s called. they want their self-flagellating uber-sensitive drama queen back


Twight's writing is a big reason I found connection to climbing in the first place. That said, BAM! Funny stuff, man, nailed it.

I wonder how much more armchair this discussion could get. "If *I* was going to try to break the Huber speed record on Zodiac (sub-2 hrs?), I would NOT preplace birdbeaks, because, ethically...."

Blah, blah, blah. If you had to do a pushup for every word posted on this site, some of us would be twice as diesel as Dwayne Johnson in a week. Food for thought. Now, back to the fray..

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By divnamite
From New York, NY
Jan 29, 2013
Does Cesare Maestri consider as a cheater as well?

People are just butt hurt because their hero Lancelot turned out to be a big fucking lie. Now they don't have an example to look up and jerk off to anymore. Big fucking deal!

If we have anything to complain about Everest is the environmental impact, not supp O2.

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By coppolillo
Jan 29, 2013
exactly--Everest is a recreational activity, undertaken by affluent white people....there's no competition, hence no "cheating," by definition.

the trash, shit on the other hand...that's an ethical/moral issue, not how one walks to the top.

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By Ben Brotelho
From Albany, NY
Jan 29, 2013
Epic free solo with a pack on
MojoMonkey wrote:
You clearly don't understand all that Lance did - that is understandable though he has/had a huge PR machine.


No, I really have no idea what I'm talking about to be honest. Elucidate me!

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By TWK
Jan 29, 2013
CJC wrote:
except for the OP who cross-posted this to the taco and who knows where else who gives a flying fuck what this guy thinks? shut up and climb the 80s called. they want their self-flagellating uber-sensitive drama queen back

Hilarious! And spot on!

coppolillo wrote:
Apples to oranges.

Not even--more like fruits to nuts.

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By Dane
Jan 30, 2013
Cham '11
I cross posted to a number of web sites..3 or 4, don't remember without looking.

The idea was to start a conversation. Agree or disagree on the topic it seems to have done that.

Gandi once said...
first they ignore you
then they laugh at you
then they will fight you
then you win

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