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Showing posts from February, 2011

Disney Celebrates Mount Everest

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Walt Disney World celebrates Mount Everest with its passholders on March 5th, 2011. Thrill seekers will be able to recognize the fifth birthday of the Expedition Everest ride at Walt Disney World. Expedition Everest riders will be sent forwards and backwards before they encounter a Yeti!

Pre-registered passholders will have the chance to experience Expedition Everest from 6 to 9 pm on Saturday, March 5 at Disney's Animal Kingdom. The theme park is actually scheduled to close at 6 pm that day, meaning this is a special after hours event.

Interested patrons have been able to sign up beginning February 8th at disneyworld.com/passholder. To be able to sign up you must be registered on the site and have your passholder ID.

Dupre Abandons Solo Mt McKinley Climb

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After seven days and six nights at 17,200 feet, spent mostly inside a 3x3x6 foot snow trench, Lonnie Dupre was depleted of his strength and was forced to turn back from being the first person to summit Mt. McKinley in January alone. Extreme weather was the reason Dupre found himself trapped in a snow trench and forced to turn back.

With winds up to 100 mph, temperatures reaching -50 degrees and a 5.4 magnitude earthquake, the weather was too uncontrollable and dangerous for Dupre to continue to the summit. Dupre has been on numerous polar adventures, including several to Alaska. If he had been successful, Dupre would have been the first person to summit Mt. McKinley alone in January. In Alaska during the month of January, there is very limited sunlight.

The first successful winter climb of Mt. McKinley came in 1967. Ray Genet, Dave Johnston and Art Davidson reached the summit in February of 1967.

Seven Summits: Kilimanjaro

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Kilimanjaro, with is three volcanoes, Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira, is considered an active volcano. Rising 19,341 feet above sea level in the north-eastern part of Tanzania and is the highest mountain in Africa.

The meaning and origin of the name Kilimanjaro is unknown, but is thought to be a combination of the Swahili word Kilima and the Kichagga word Njaro. Kilima in Swahili translates to "mountain", while Njaro in Kichagga translates to "whiteness" or in some instances "our". European explorers adopted the name by 1860.

In the 1880s the mountain was called Kilima-Ndscharo, and became a part of German East Africa. Karl Peters had persuaded local chiefs to sign treaties. In 1889 the peak of Kibo was named "Kaiser-Wilhelm-Spitze" by Hans Meyer. He named the peak on the first ascent to the summit. This name was used until 1918, when after World War I the German colonies were given to Great Britain. The British renamed it "Uhuru Peak"…

Seven Summits: Vinson Massif

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The highest mountain in Antarctica, Vinson Massif, stands 16,050 feet above sea level. It lies in the Sentinel Range of the Ellsworth Mountains. The massif extends between several glaciers, the most well known being the Hinkley Glacier to the east. Vinson Massif comprises both the high central Vinson Plateau and several side ridges.

Vinson Massif was first seen in 1958 and first climbed in 1966. The current height, 16,050 feet, resulted from a GPS survey by the 2004 Omega Foundation team. The team was led by Australian Damien Gildea and comprised of two Chilean climbers, Rodrigo Fica and Camilo Rada.

The climate on Vinson Massif is mostly controlled by the polar ice cap's high pressure system and creates reasonably stable conditions. As in all arctic climates, high winds and snowfall are still a possibility. Traditionally, the annual snowfall on Vinson Massif is low. The summer season of Vinson Massif is during the months of November through January and there are 24 hours o…