62. Reading Skills Comprehension: Mt. Everest

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Read the following passage carefully.

1  Mt. Everest has continued to attract ever since June 8, 1924, when two members of a British expedjt0 George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, had first attempted to climb the summit. The two men were last spotted “going strong” for the top, until the clouds perpetually swirling around Everest, engulfed them. They then vanished.

2 Mallory’s body was not found for another 75 years, in May 1999. Ten more expeditions were to follow before the historic climb of Everest for the first time, by Edmund Hillary, a New Zealand beekeeper, and Tenzing Norgay, an acclaimed Sherpa climber. The news of the climb reached England at the time of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth U and Hilary became famous overnight, in all of the British Empire. Tenzing, on the other hand, became a symbol of national pride across both Nepal and India.

3 Today, Mt Everest is drawing attention for all the negative reasons. The entire route that the climbers follow to reach the top is littered with rubbish and in sore need of cleaning up. The rubbish strewn all over the mountain includes oxygen cylinders, human waste, and even climbers’ bodies which do not decompose in the extreme cold.

4 Under the new regulations passed by the Nepalese government, climbers scaling Everest will have to bring back eight kilograms of garbage. This amounts exclusive of the climbers own garbage weight. This measure is taken to restore the pristine nature of the peak.

5 The rule will be applicable to those climbers of Mt Everest who will ascend beyond Everest’s base camp, from April onwards. Climbers who fail to comply with this new rule are likely to be charged and legal action would be taken against them. The action would involve the paying of a fine, or another penalty.

6 Expeditions returning back to the base will have to submit their trash at an office to be set up in the precincts of the Everest Base Camp.

  1. Answer the following questions briefly.

(a) When was the first attempt to scale Mt Everest made and by whom?

(b) What was the outcome of the first expedition?

(c) What was the climbing record before the first successful attempt?

(d) Who were the first successful climbers of Everest?

(e) Why is Everest drawing attention today?

(f) What is the nature of the waste littering the mountainside?

(g) What is the nature of the new regulation?

(h) How were the first climbers of Everest rewarded?

Answers

1 (a) The first attempt to scale Mt Everest was made on 8 June 1924, by two members of a British expedition, namely George Mallory arid Andrew Irvine.

(b) The two men were spotted going ahead to reach the peak when they were engulfed by clouds and were never seen or heard since. Mallory’s body was discovered 75 years later.

(c) There were ten unsuccessful attempts before the first successful climb of Everest.

(d) The first successful climbers of Everest were Edmund Hilary a New Zealand beekeeper and Tenzing Norgay. a Sherpa who was acclaimed by both Nepal and India.

(e) Everest is drawing attention today because the entire route of the climb is strewn with rubbish left behind by expeditions.

(f) The waste littering the mountain trait consists of used oxygen cylinders, human waste, and the dead bodies of climbers that have not decomposed due to the extreme cold.

(g) Under the new regulation, climbers are required to bring back 8 Kilograms of garbage, excluding their own and deposit the same at the office at the Base Camp. Defaulters would be fined or would face the penalty.

(h) As their feat coincided with the coronation of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, Hilary’s feat was acknowledged all across the British Empire and Tenzing was acclaimed by India, Nepal and Tibet.

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