Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
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Re: Circumnavigators vs Mt Everest climbers
Both adventures (circumnavigating & Mt. Everest) require and reward self-sufficiency. Cruising many miles from land on a sailboat, you have nothing except the wind, the waves and that which you brought oboard. So it is with mountaineering in the wilderness. All you have is the weather, the rocks and that which you have in your pack.
Good offshore, bluewater sailors know that they must be competent in many skills. On a long passage you need to be your own mechanic, navigator, doctor, chef and any number of other professions. Again, when you're on a long wilderness trek or summit attempt you have no one to rely on except yourself. Even experienced Sherpas and a well-stocked base camp can't save you from yourself.
While I personally haven't attempted either feat, I've often thought about the parallels. There's something special to me about self-sufficiency. I like the idea of being able to survive off the land (food, water, shelter) and go as far as my own feet will take me. I also cherish the dreams I have about the wind carrying me to far away places and my sailboat serving as home. Self-sufficiency is simple and complex at the same time. The contrast between the two is what I find so fulfilling.
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