If you die while climbing Mount Everest your frozen body might just be turned into a mile marker for future climbers. More than 200 people have died on the frozen slopes of the world’s most revered mountain and in some cases their bodies have remained on the mountainside, a constant reminder of the summits sheer power and unforgiving conditions.
One of the most widely known landmarks is Green Boots, an Indian climber who froze to death near a mountain cave in 1996. Climbers attempting the summit use Green Boots’ body to determine exactly how far they have climbed.
The Smithsonian notes that Green Boots was joined one decade later by David Sharp, an English climber who stopped at the cave near Green Boots where he literally froze in place. Sharp did not die immediately but instead 40 climbers passed by his body, mistaking him for Green Boots. By the time climbers heard his quite moans of pain it was too late to save him.
The website Altered Dimensions has cataloged the deaths of Everest climbers. Some deaths are unusual, some are scary and others are unbelievable.
Long considered the Holy Grail of mountain climbing for many adventure seekers, Mount Everest leaves remainders of its power behind, not only by the bodies that are never recovered but also by the bodies that market its slopes.
The lesson? If you don’t want to become a mile market along the treacherous slopes you either need to fall to your death somewhere remote or make it up and back down the summit.
Are you a little creeped out by Mount Everest’s human mile markers?