An Everest Survivor
Reaching the summit of Everest is a great achievement; getting down safely is even greater. Hugo Rodriguez Barroso proudly waved the Mexican flag on the top of the world on May the 23rd of 1997, at 2:12 p. m., then got stranded above 28,000 feet. He climbed down next morning to become the only individual ever surviving a night in the open at such altitude and -49 °F. More
Reaching the summit of Everest is a great achievement; getting down safely is even greater.
Until 1996 one climber would die out of six, most of the time during their descent.
Hugo Rodriguez Barroso proudly waved the Mexican flag on the top of the world on May the 23rd of 1997, at 2:12 p. m. Hugo became at that moment the first athlete in the world to accomplish the huge challenges of long distance swimming and mountain climbing: the solo swim of the English Channel and the summit of Mount Everest, a conqueror of both sea and land.
After reaching the summit Hugo faced an unpredicted situation of extreme survival under difficult circumstances: with no oxygen, no tent, no sleeping bag at 28,000 feet caught in a storm that would take the temperature down to 49 °F below zero. From Camp Four the news spread across the mountain all the way down to Base Camp and to the world; Hugo had perished, no one had ever survived a single night at such altitude under such conditions. Back in 1996 several climbers had been trapped in South Col to die in an event still considered the greatest tragedy in History of Everest.
But the unthinkable happened, something never ever seen before. In a journey into himself that at times verged on delirium, Hugo not only survived one whole night above 28,000 feet in Everest but, near dawn, he climbed down to Camp Four, which for any other individual would have been impossible to perform after being at extreme altitude for more than 34 hours.
Was it his willpower, his determination or his impeccable training? Or was it an exercise of certainty? Perhaps none of the above would have occurred if at the time he hadn’t managed to become one with the mountain.
While Hugo, a brave Mexican and human being, goes on the tale of his climb to the highest mountain in the world, we will be led along an experience that for sure will invite us to reflect, and certainly, to make us become one with Everest.
Available ebook formats: