Mount Everest Ladder Rung - 9" Long, 1" Diameter
Mount Everest Ladder Rung - 9" Long, 1" Diameter
The Mount Everest Ladder Rung made its debut in the First Edition of the Mini Museum. We are proud to offer it once more as a stand-alone item. A significant portion of the proceeds from this specimen will be passed on to local communities in Nepal to help fund additional cleanup efforts on Mount Everest. Details below!
This specimen is a complete ladder rung from the Khumbu Glacier on Mount Everest. It measures 9" long and is 1" in diameter. It includes an individual, signed certificate of authenticity, noting the size and location.
As with all ladder rungs, this item with have signs of wear from crampons and exposure. Some will also show signs of stress (i.e. bent).
📸 Mount Everest as seen from an aircraft from airline company Drukair in Bhutan. The aircraft is south of the mountains, facing north.
Mount Everest (Nepali: Sagarmatha सगरमाथा; Tibetan: Chomolungma ཇོ་མོ་གླང་མ; Chinese: Zhumulangma 珠穆朗玛) is the tallest mountain in the world. The peak lies directly on the border of Nepal and China, rising 8,848 m (29,029 ft) above sea level.
📸 Above: Crossing a wide crevasse on an aluminum ladder (Source: BBC "Crossing Everest’s deadly slopes").
Those who would ascend those heights face many dangers along the way, including the Khumbu glacier and its treacherous icefall.
Khumbu is the highest glacier in the world; its altitude ranges from 4,900 m (16,100 ft) to 7,600 m (24,900 ft).
Aluminum ladders play a crucial role in the traversal of the deep and wide crevasses that cut into the glacier surface, as well as tricky ascents over ridges of ice.
📸 Macro image of crampon marks.
Marks of Adventure
Yet, after supporting the weight of thousands of people each year and taking enormous punishment from sharpened steel crampons, the ladders eventually reach the point of fatigue. The rungs bend and break and the ladders are replaced.
📸 Examples of Complete Everest Ladder Rungs
Complete Ladder Rungs
Note that all rungs will have signs of wear from crampons and exposure. Some will also show signs of stress (i.e. bent). Individual pictures appear on the site for each specimen. These specimens receive individual certificates of authenticity.
📸 Also Available!
Precision-cut ladder rung slices
In addition to full ladder rungs, we also offer precision-cut segments of ladder rung from the Khumbu Glacier on Mount Everest, roughly 2mm thick.
The specimen comes in a classic, glass-topped riker display box measuring 4 1/2" x 3 1/2". A small information card is also included, which also serves as the certificate of authenticity.
📸 Panorama of Mount Everest and surrounding peaks with the Khumbu Glacier in the foreground.
HOW TO CLEAN THE TALLEST MOUNTAIN IN THE WORLD
~ Hans Fex, Creator and Chief Curator of the Mini Museum
📸 Images from Kathmandu (2019)
Traveling to the Mountain
It seems like a simple thing, but the removal of a ladder or any equipment from the slopes of the tallest mountain in the world is a monumental task.
Each year more than 40,000 people visit Mount Everest, and hundreds go on to the summit. In their wake, they leave behind many thousands of pounds of refuse and discarded equipment.
The cleanup task rests on the backs (quite literally) of the local Sherpas who personally carry each load down and trek it on to local villages for storage and eventual removal. However, keeping up with this endless wave is nearly impossible due to a lack of funds and the physical task of hauling it all down.
During the summer of 2019, I traveled to Nepal in search of new specimens for the collection, including the Tethys Ocean specimen in Age of Dinosaurs.
📸 Images from my trek to Khumjung.
While in Kathmandu, I was fortunate to make the acquaintance of Dawa Steven Sherpa, managing director of the legendary mountaineering firm Asian Trekking. Dawa Steven told me about the challenge the Sherpas face and encouraged me to travel to the remote village of Khumjung to see for myself.
📸 The truly amazing Pasang Sherpa. We did the 110km roundtrip in just a few days.
With Dawa Steven’s invaluable assistance and support, I traveled from Kathmandu to Lukla by plane and then on by foot, trekking 55 km (34 mi) one-way to Khumjung. I made the roundtrip journey with the amazing Pasang Sherpa, and I am forever grateful for both his kindness and companionship on the trek.
📸 Images of Khumjung from my trek. Capturing the scale of anything in the Himalayas is almost impossible.
At 3,790 m (12,430 ft), Khumjung is just a few kilometers from Mount Everest, making it an ideal collection point for equipment brought down from the mountain. But, as Dawa Steven said, getting it out of Khumjung is another matter entirely.
📸 Digging In
I went to Khumjung hoping to procure a few simple items we might offer in a future Mini Museum. Yet, at that moment, standing there in that beautiful village, I knew that we could help in a way that no one else could. So that’s exactly what we’re setting out to do.
As noted above, a significant portion of the proceeds from this specimen will be passed on to local communities in Nepal to help fund additional cleanup efforts, including bringing the material all the way down.
Thank You for Your Support!
We may not be able to remove all the debris from the mountain but we can make a real difference. In many ways, this is why I started Mini Museum in the first place and we are happy and grateful to continue that journey with your support!
Front of the Specimen Card
Back of the Specimen Card
Graydon, Don., and Kurt. Hanson. Mountaineering: the Freedom of the Hills / Editors, Don Graydon and Kurt Hanson. 6th ed., Mountaineers, 1997.
Hunt, John, and Edmund Hillary. "The Ascent of Mount Everest." The Geographical Journal 119.4 (1953): 385-399.
Krakauer, Jon. Into Thin Air: a Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster / Jon Krakauer. 1st ed., Villard, 1997.
Mitchell, Ian R., and George Rodway. Prelude to Everest: Alexander Kellas, Himalayan Mountaineer. Luath Press Ltd, 2014.
Ortner, Sherry B. Life and Death on Mt. Everest: Sherpas and Himalayan mountaineering. Princeton University Press, 1999.
Sherpa DM. Living in the Middle: Sherpas of the Mid-Range Himalayas. Waveland Press; 1994.