Fact: my boyfriend looks more like Benedict Cumberbatch than anyone I know.
seriously jealousy is the worst emotion
you’re not only really sad but you’re really annoyed and helpless at the same time
and you feel pathetic like you’re ruining people’s fun but don’t want to be left out so you just sit around quietly annoyed
forever paranoid that people hate me and just aren’t saying anything
I am excited for this episode!
Cory Monteith, Mark Salling, and Jenna Ushkowitz head to the set of Glee in Los Angeles on Monday, April 16. The co-stars sported themed wardrobe with Mark covering up his signature Puck mohawk with a wig.
Cory always needs to dress like this.
That awesome moment when my great uncle is referred to as “famous” …Yeah. Just shamelessly bragging, here.
The 1975 New Zealand Jannu expedition was a trip very much in the modern mould, as its objective was a route up the steep North Face of Jannu, a 7710 m peak near Kangchenjunga in eastern Nepal. The expedition marked the entry into Himalayan climbing of a new generation of New Zealand mountaineers, following about 10 or so years after a number of Sir Edmund Hillary-led expeditions had made first ascents of several smaller mountains in the Everest region. The Jannu team, led by veteran guide Peter Farrell, comprised many of the best young New Zealand climbers. One of these was Geoff Wayatt, who, despite having lived in New Zealand for a number of years and having been closely associated with New Zealand mountaineering, was in fact an Australian.
Born and raised in Tasmania, Wayatt got his start in climbing on the Organ Pipes, a rock outcrop high on the slopes of Mt Wellington overlooking Hobart. The mid-1960s found him in New Zealand, where he teamed with some other Tasmanians to climb the north buttress of Mt Darwin, a big-rock route in the Mt Cook region. After his first New Zealand trip, however, Wayatt did not retreat to the warm Australian rock, as did many of his countrymen, but rather stayed on more or less permanently and quickly established himself in the Mt Cook climbing scene.
In the late 1960s, he worked as a guide for Alpine Instruction Limited Mt Cook, one of the first of the professional mountaineering schools and guiding services that were being established in New Zealand. Even in those days, Wayatt took a keen interest in skiing and anticipated by several years the acceptance of ski-mountaineering as a sport in its own right in New Zealand. By 1973, he had established his own school, Mountain Recreation, based in Wanaka and operating in the Mt Aspiring region. He did not, however, confine his activity to New Zealand. He also worked as a heli-ski guide in Canada, picking up valuable experience in judging snow conditions and the susceptibility of slopes to avalanche, and also made the first ascent of the east face of Nevado Huascaran, the highest mountain in the Peruvian Andes. By the time the Jannu team was selected, Wayatt had become so well known as one of New Zealand’s leading alpinists that hardly anyone suspected him of being an Australian!
The Jannu team had certainly taken on an enormous task with the North Face route: two vertical kilometres of steep, dangerous and difficult climbing. The bottom section up the face—a rock buttress dubbed the ‘Wall of Shadows’—was difficult enough, but above it lay extensive fields of steep ice and snow, interrupted about halfway by a line of ice cliffs that frequently sent blocks of ice crashing down the face. The danger was severe enough that some climbers decided not to go above the buttress and in fact the whole expedition reached something of an impasse as the team’s morale plummeted when faced with the ice cliffs.
Wayatt and partner Jim Strang broke the crisis by making an ‘alpine-style’ push virtually all the way up the North Face. Alpine-style climbing—rapidly increasing in popularity in the Himalaya—is the antithesis of the siege-style attacks used in earlier Himalayan expeditions. In an alpine-style ascent, climbers simply put everything they need—tents, food, fuel, clothing and climbing gear—on their backs and set out from the bottom of the mountain to push for the summit in one concerted effort. It is much quicker and requires much less gear and supplies than the siege approach, but it also means that there is no string of camps already set up in case something goes wrong high on the mountain. It therefore places much more emphasis on the skill, determination and stamina of the individual climbers.
An alpine-style approach to Jannu’s North Face made sense. Wayatt and Strang were both very strong climbers and making a single push for the top meant that they would have to pass under the menacing ice cliffs only once on the ascent and once on the descent, rather than having to make repeated carries under them. Despite some dangerous moments, the tactic nearly worked. The pair reached a point near the bottom of the cliffs the first day and traversed under them as quickly as they could on the morning of the second (see image 3.5). By the end of that day, they were well above the cliffs and onto the upper part of the face. On the third day, Strang made a solo climb to within 100 m of the summit ridge but, with Wayatt still back in the tent suffering from fatigue and a sleepless night, Strang wisely backed off and the pair descended.
Although Wayatt and Strang did not reach the summit, they had broken the psychological barrier. A second team then made an attempt, taking a somewhat different line up the face, but they ran out of steam on the summit ridge as cold wind threatened them with frostbite, so they retreated. The New Zealanders did not reach the summit of Jannu, but they had shown plenty of courage and determination in scaling the North Face.
Geoff Wayatt’s climb on Jannu was harder, steeper and more dangerous than any Himalayan climbing previously undertaken by Australians. It marked Australia’s first link with the new style of severe technical climbing in the Himalaya. In many other respects, however, it followed the earlier pattern of Australian involvement in the Himalaya, particularly that of George Finch: a climber of Australian birth who lived and climbed in another country and who was the lone Australian in a foreign expedition.
If Wayatt’s only contribution to Australian climbing in the Himalaya had been his participation in the Jannu expedition, he would have had no more impact than Finch or Peter Taylor. Through the training of many novice Australian climbers in his Mountain Recreation School in Wanaka, however, Wayatt was to have an important influence on Australian Himalayan mountaineering.
On the North Face of Jannu
Jim led the way, clawing up steep gullies of ice and endless ridges of powder snow. The wind gusts would pin us to the face, then after a momentary lull it would swing and attempt to whip us away. Our faces were continually battered by ice pellets. It was 4.30 p.m. when we hauled ourselves onto the first flat spot in nine hours ( see image 3.6). We’d eaten nothing all day and were exhausted. With a lot of effort we levelled a site, pitched the tent and stumbled inside. Jammed inside our sleeping bags and cramped by equipment, we found our stove failed to ignite. Brand new and tested 750 m lower, the faulty stove now meant we were without hot liquids. We drank some water which we had carried, ate some sardines and dozed off to sleep. The night for me was sleepless, resulting from fatigue, the altitude and the strong winds battering our tent.
In the morning, all I could think of was more sleep, so I swallowed two sleeping tablets. Disturbed by my snoring, Jim decided to look for a better campsite. Six hours later he returned after a solo climb to within 100 m of the summit ridge. While he was away, I spent two hours fiddling with the primus and managed one and a half cups of warm water. Our dehydration was becoming serious, for without liquid we could eat no food.
That night the storm increased in intensity and threatened to collapse the tent. The air space became so restricted I was forced to sleep with my head in the tent entrance; in the morning I was covered with snow.
It was suicidal to remain high on the face any longer. We had to retreat.
Getting dressed for temperatures of –20 degrees C was an ordeal, and I eventually had to wait outside the tent for Jim. Already my hands were becoming numb; the delay was unbearable but I resisted hurrying him. Finally, stiff with cold, I led off, trailing the rope. Three metres from the tent I tripped and plummeted towards the valley. Jim had yet to tie on and watched me slide helpless through our toilet area down the steepening snow slope. Suddenly my leg jammed in a crevasse and I was spun headfirst downhill, screaming in agony and struggling to relieve the tension from my leg. Jamming my ice axe into the slope for balance I regained my footing then without hesitation I turned and clambered out of sight around a steep ice bulge. Thinking that I’d become deranged, and that I might trip again, Jim thrust his ice axe into the slope and belayed me.
For the first few rope lengths we moved singly until our muscles had loosened. We only had one set of mitts each. Jim’s had become wet, so I lent him my spare pair. We backed down the face steadily, gripping the axes firmly while the ever-present wind poured snow onto our hands, feet and faces. Two hours later we ran the gauntlet under the ice cliffs to the sunny calmness of the crevasse camp.
From ‘Then the mountain took control…’,New Zealand Alpine Journal, vol. 29 (1976), pp. 16–17.